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Old 09-25-2013, 03:48 AM   #16
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Very good hardware at excellent prices. Shame about the forked version of android though.
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Agree.
It's a bit odd to see Amazon incorporate the sort of decision I'd expect from HTC. Customizing the Android OS to the point it's unrecognizable seems like a fun idea until development of the primary OS overtakes and supplants the customizations, which will also render hardware designed for the modified OS less adaptable.

Companies can't rely on the idea that people will constantly buy new hardware. They have to respect the customer's faith that, in the event the next two iterations are unaffordable or unavailable, the customer's previous purchase will be fully functional for years.

That's why so many of us still own a Kindle Keyboard: Its feature set is unique and its functionality is unimpaired.
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Old 09-25-2013, 03:56 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by Prestidigitweeze View Post
It's a bit odd to see Amazon incorporate the sort of decision I'd expect from HTC. Customizing the Android OS to the point it's unrecognizable seems like a fun idea until development of the primary OS overtakes and supplants the customizations, which will also render hardware designed for the modified OS less adaptable.

Companies can't rely on the idea that people will constantly buy new hardware. They have to respect the customer's faith that, in the event the next two iterations are unaffordable or unavailable, the customer's previous purchase will be fully functional for years.
The Fire is not sold as a "generic" Android tablet, but as a device for the consumption of Amazon content. Why do you believe that the fact that it has a forked o/s means that it will not be fully functional for the purpose for which it's designed? I mean, do you care (or even know) what version of Linux your Kindle Keyboard is running?
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Old 09-25-2013, 04:26 AM   #18
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I have no intention of upgrading to this model. A lack of key hardware features and Amazon's forked Android make it overpriced compared to the Nexus 7. Compared to last year's Fire HD, it's still overpriced for my intended use. I was able to get a new Fire HD and Otterbox case for $158. Couldn't even begin to approach that pricing with the new model.

Bottom line - I'm very happy with my current Fire.
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Old 09-25-2013, 04:30 AM   #19
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I have no intention of upgrading to this model. A lack of key hardware features and Amazon's forked Android make it overpriced compared to the Nexus 7. Compared to last year's Fire HD, it's still overpriced for my intended use. I was able to get a new Fire HD and Otterbox case for $158. Couldn't even begin to approach that pricing with the new model.

Bottom line - I'm very happy with my current Fire.
I have the very first Fire so you bet I am upgrading!
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Old 09-25-2013, 04:34 AM   #20
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The Fire is not sold as a "generic" Android tablet, but as a device for the consumption of Amazon content. Why do you believe that the fact that it has a forked o/s means that it will not be fully functional for the purpose for which it's designed? I mean, do you care (or even know) what version of Linux your Kindle Keyboard is running?
It doesn't matter how Amazon wants us to see its market placement of the KF. What matters is how the public chooses to use it. If you're spending over two hundred dollars for a tablet, I'd say your uses for it should be as unconfined as possible.

An e-reader running a modified flavor of Linux is a very different thing from a standard multi-purpose Android tablet which deviates from a specific and perpetually developed OS with which many other apps -- and their updates -- must be compatible.

The simplicity of text-based e-books require far less standardization at the software/hardware integration level, and the deliberately limited functionality of e-text-specific hardware/software is a completely different case from that of the tablet. The reason Amazon alone can make the KK relevant is because their variations on a standard are consistently useful. Not so their deviations from Android.

As a tablet user, I want as much functionality as possible. I'm not interested in an attractive content player. Amazon is changing that model as well: They've made OfficeSuite a permanent part of their software and, according to the WSJ, are courting the business market. Business markets value compatibility.

Most people I know who own the original KF either rooted it immediately or bemoaned its limitations. Limiting the OS to an Amazon-specific version of Jellybean which deviates from the original so much that it has its own name will probably limit the KF user's options even more.

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Old 09-25-2013, 04:38 AM   #21
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As a tablet user, I want as much functionality as possible. I'm not interested in an attractive content player.
Would you not be better off buying something like a Nexus tablet, in that case, rather than a Fire? The Fire is really not being sold as a generic tablet, but as an Amazon content consumption device.
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Old 09-25-2013, 04:41 AM   #22
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Would you not be better off buying something like a Nexus tablet, in that case, rather than a Fire? The Fire is really not being sold as a generic tablet, but as an Amazon content consumption device.
My point is that the Fires' sales will be better off -- by Amazon's standards -- if the tablets themselves can be used as either thing.

The fact that Amazon's looking into placing the newest Fires in business environments suggests they're looking at hardware flexibility just as I am (Office Suite = dynamic content creation, not passive content reception), which again makes their decision to deviate even further from Android seem curious.

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Old 09-25-2013, 04:44 AM   #23
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The Fire is really not being sold as a generic tablet, but as an Amazon content consumption device.
That being the case, then why the spec overkill and the resulting increase in pricing?
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Old 09-25-2013, 04:49 AM   #24
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That being the case, then why the spec overkill and the resulting increase in pricing?
More specifically, what about this piece in the WSJ, which outlines Amazon's development/support of software for content creation, as well as its hardware/software implementation of business server/document/email transparency?

Kindle Fire HD and HDX Are Enterprise-Ready

It's very clear the new Amazon tablets are partly designed for content creation, and that Amazon has implemented business-specific features and specs as well.

Businesses and content creators like stability. Stability means fewer deviations from standard software.

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Old 09-25-2013, 05:10 AM   #25
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Nice hardware, but no thanks. Forked Android, no folder organization and most importantly no SD card slot means it's of no interest to me whatsoever. And yes, screen resolution is indeed pointless and overkill for screens of that size. It's a shame, since with standard Android and an SD card slot I'd have jumped on it without delay.
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Old 09-25-2013, 07:28 AM   #26
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And no press conference this time. Not for the Kindle Fire and not for the Kindle Paperwhite. Perhaps Amazon itself doesn't think it's worth a press conference since the upgrade is evolutionary and not revolutionary.
Or, Amazon being cheap, they figure pressers are as effective as the trade shows they don't go to and chose to save their money.

As for screen resolution, it comes in handy for gaming, reading, surfing, etc.
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Old 09-25-2013, 07:30 AM   #27
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My point is that the Fires' sales will be better off -- by Amazon's standards -- if the tablets themselves can be used as either thing.

The fact that Amazon's looking into placing the newest Fires in business environments suggests they're looking at hardware flexibility just as I am (Office Suite = dynamic content creation, not passive content reception), which again makes their decision to deviate even further from Android seem curious.
You are missing the point, I think. Amazon is not interested in selling the Fires as general purpose tablets --- they make little money on them. Now if the tablets cost an extra $100, then it would be worth the effort just for hardware sales.
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Old 09-25-2013, 07:37 AM   #28
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You are missing the point, I think. Amazon is not interested in selling the Fires as general purpose tablets --- they make little money on them. Now if the tablets cost an extra $100, then it would be worth the effort just for hardware sales.
Yes, that was my point. Amazon make little or no money from hardware sales - they essentially give away the devices at cost price, and rely on content sales to make their profit. It's not in their interest to give away a device and make it easy for it to be used for content purchased elsewhere.
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Old 09-25-2013, 08:00 AM   #29
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You are missing the point, I think. Amazon is not interested in selling the Fires as general purpose tablets --- they make little money on them. Now if the tablets cost an extra $100, then it would be worth the effort just for hardware sales.
Hans:

With all due respect (which, contrary to standard sarcastic internet usage, means you're actually due my respect), I think you're wrong this once. See the article to which I linked before.

Here It Is Again

If I'm missing the point, then The Wall Street Journal has missed the point entirely and were misled by Amazon's Vice President of Enterprise and Education, Raghu Murthi. They were also misled by Caroline Brant, Learning Solutions Director at ROI Training, Inc.

Whatever the reason, Amazon has decided to venture into the world of dynamic content creation this time, and to sell tablets for not only media consumption but business use. Up until now, I'd have characterized the KF as an interactive TV designed to cloud-broadcast Amazon-purchased media. If this and other articles are to be believed, that's no longer the only reason to buy one.
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Old 09-25-2013, 08:08 AM   #30
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More specifically, what about this piece in the WSJ, which outlines Amazon's development/support of software for content creation, as well as its hardware/software implementation of business server/document/email transparency?

Kindle Fire HD and HDX Are Enterprise-Ready

It's very clear the new Amazon tablets are partly designed for content creation, and that Amazon has implemented business-specific features and specs as well.

Businesses and content creators like stability. Stability means fewer deviations from standard software.
The Business features are for their Government contracts and for the educational space. I expect their corporate units will ship with Mayday hardwired to a separate call center.

As for the "purity" of the OS, note that Amazon is calling it FireOS, not Android. It is now its own separate entity. Parse the descriptions and you'll see they aren't even claiming full Android compatibility, merely that it can run "most" Android apps.

Amazon is doing the same thing Samsung is doing, only more extensively in de-Googling their system.

Simple rule of thumb: if you want Android, buy Nexus. If you want an appliance and don't care what the plumbing is like, then maybe the Fire's will do.

And, BTW, the tablets are not over spec'd -- there is no such thing as too much RAM, CPU-power, or GPU-power, for *gaming*.

What Amazon is doing is focusing on customer usage profiles (note the plural) and adding features to tickle the fancy of the corporate types, the gamers, the family buyer... Buyers they actually have a chance to persuade. Android purist and iOS fans they never had a chance with so there is no reason to even bother. They have a product and they will sell it to those that want it.

It's a hardcore approach.
It may work or not but nobody can accuse them of doing a me-too generic product. Just as with KF8 vis-a-vis epub3, they are focusing on what is useful to *their* customers and targets instead of trying to be all things to all people.

In the NBCNEWS piece above, Bezos reiterates that they make their money when people use their gadgets not when they buy them. And that they are indifferent to upgrade sales. Which means at least some of the HDX features will be coming to the current HD models. And to their reading and video apps.

The FIRE tablets are appliances, not computers. They are closer to Smart TVs than PCs. And that is the way their customers need it.

There's plenty of generic android tablets out there for those looking for purity. Amazon is looking for content and service consumers, not mobile computing users.
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