Thoughts on Amazon’s Kindle Fire: You Get What You Pay For

The tablet market looks like it finally has some competition — or so it seems. With the announcement of Amazon’s Kindle Fire, due out sometime before the holiday shopping seasons starts, it appears that the iPad and Barnes & Noble’s NOOK are both going to be threatened by the new, low-priced tablet. At only $199, this 7″ tablet with a dual core processor looks enticing at first glance. But consumers should be wary that, like with all products and services, you get what you pay for.

Thoughts on Amazon's Kindle Fire: You Get What You Pay ForThe Amazon Kindle has a price point that is affordable for those considering a tablet. However, consumers should note what the Kindle Fire does not have: access to the Android Market (it’s stocked with the Amazon Marketplace), a camera (either front or rear facing), MicroSD slot, HDMI, GPS or 3G capability, and it only comes with 8 GB of storage. The Amazon Kindle Fire has no way to store much data, as it is designed to rely on the cloud. Will the average consumer be so savvy to utilize cloud storage? (Don’t believe me? Take a second and call your parents and ask them what they do in the cloud. Instead of talking about Amazon EC2 or even Dropbox, most will probably instead mistake your question for their “hobbies” in the ’60s and ’70s).

For consumers who are more concerned about basic functionality at an affordable price, the lack of features on Amazon’s Kindle Fire should be enough to force consumers to compare basic specs necessary for usability of a tablet. Without a camera, GPS, HDMI, or even MicroSD slot, the Kindle Fire is clearly not designed to create content, let alone share it with others. With the dual core processor you can more easily watch and listen to media, but not much else. You also don’t have access to the Android Market, which is essential for getting the most use out of an Android tablet. (Of course, you could root the Fire, as you can with the NOOK, and enjoy the full features of an Android OS, but most consumers would never do that.)

So what is $199 getting you? A Kindle with the ability to use the Internet and watch movies, basically. For much less you can get a fully functional Kindle, or for a little more — relative to what you’re already going to spend on the Kindle Fire — purchase an iPad with 3G capability, full access to music and apps in the iTunes store, a camera, GPS, Bluetooth, and a longer running time. For those looking to actually do something with a tablet — you really do get what you pay for.

There’s nothing wrong with choosing a tablet with minimalist functions. But for those looking to spend several hundred dollars on a tablet, consumers should consider what they actually hope to use a tablet for before dropping only the bare minimum for a Kindle Fire.

Would you buy Amazon’s Kindle Fire? Or will the lack of features force you to continue considering other options? Let us know in the comments.

Article Written by

  • Gunsxing

    after read, i confused, maybe the fire is not suite for me

  • Gunsxing

    after read, i confused, maybe the fire is not suite for me

  • Anonymous

    I didn’t know the Kindle fire was an Android device. I can already see people flashing this thing or putting a custom ROM like cyanogenmod when supported.

  • Anonymous

    I didn’t know the Kindle fire was an Android device. I can already see people flashing this thing or putting a custom ROM like cyanogenmod when supported.

  • Anonymous

    I didn’t know the Kindle fire was an Android device. I can already see people flashing this thing or putting a custom ROM like cyanogenmod when supported.

  • Anonymous

    I didn’t know the Kindle fire was an Android device. I can already see people flashing this thing or putting a custom ROM like cyanogenmod when supported.

  • Teh Gay Geek

    Most user of tablets only use them for media, internet and email.  The Fire appears (have not seen or used one yet) to be able to do all those things so it will fulfill most users requirements.  Will the micro-USB allow users to side load apps from the Android Marketplace.  There is definitely a place for both tablets.  It will be interesting to see what Amazon does with the rumored larger (10″) version of the Fire and the price point.

  • Teh Gay Geek

    Most user of tablets only use them for media, internet and email.  The Fire appears (have not seen or used one yet) to be able to do all those things so it will fulfill most users requirements.  Will the micro-USB allow users to side load apps from the Android Marketplace.  There is definitely a place for both tablets.  It will be interesting to see what Amazon does with the rumored larger (10″) version of the Fire and the price point.

  • Teh Gay Geek

    Most user of tablets only use them for media, internet and email.  The Fire appears (have not seen or used one yet) to be able to do all those things so it will fulfill most users requirements.  Will the micro-USB allow users to side load apps from the Android Marketplace.  There is definitely a place for both tablets.  It will be interesting to see what Amazon does with the rumored larger (10″) version of the Fire and the price point.

  • Teh Gay Geek

    Most user of tablets only use them for media, internet and email.  The Fire appears (have not seen or used one yet) to be able to do all those things so it will fulfill most users requirements.  Will the micro-USB allow users to side load apps from the Android Marketplace.  There is definitely a place for both tablets.  It will be interesting to see what Amazon does with the rumored larger (10″) version of the Fire and the price point.

  • Robert Shaver

    The price is good but I need to know a few more things about it. No hurry, it’s not out for another month or so.

  • Robert Shaver

    The price is good but I need to know a few more things about it. No hurry, it’s not out for another month or so.

  • Robert Shaver

    The price is good but I need to know a few more things about it. No hurry, it’s not out for another month or so.

  • Robert Shaver

    The price is good but I need to know a few more things about it. No hurry, it’s not out for another month or so.

  • Awiseman

    I’d buy one because It’s cheap. I assume I’d use a tablet on the toilet or on the train. I’d rather carry around a $200 dollar tablet aroudn in the toilet or on the train than a $500 dollar or $600 dollar one. Also I’d root the device anyway, so access the the android store would be perfect. I think this is going to sell incredibly well and apple/samsung/everyone else is going to have a lot to answer for.

  • Awiseman

    I’d buy one because It’s cheap. I assume I’d use a tablet on the toilet or on the train. I’d rather carry around a $200 dollar tablet aroudn in the toilet or on the train than a $500 dollar or $600 dollar one. Also I’d root the device anyway, so access the the android store would be perfect. I think this is going to sell incredibly well and apple/samsung/everyone else is going to have a lot to answer for.

  • Awiseman

    I’d buy one because It’s cheap. I assume I’d use a tablet on the toilet or on the train. I’d rather carry around a $200 dollar tablet aroudn in the toilet or on the train than a $500 dollar or $600 dollar one. Also I’d root the device anyway, so access the the android store would be perfect. I think this is going to sell incredibly well and apple/samsung/everyone else is going to have a lot to answer for.

  • Awiseman

    I’d buy one because It’s cheap. I assume I’d use a tablet on the toilet or on the train. I’d rather carry around a $200 dollar tablet aroudn in the toilet or on the train than a $500 dollar or $600 dollar one. Also I’d root the device anyway, so access the the android store would be perfect. I think this is going to sell incredibly well and apple/samsung/everyone else is going to have a lot to answer for.

  • Noonienoonie

    Why use the iPad as the better choice? It doesn’t even have extended storage, nor be able to communicate with other Bluetooth-enabled devices that isn’t “Made for the iPad”. Sure it’s the most popular tablet out there but it hardly excels in its said features aside from being very usable. Its picture quality sucks, the screen is from 2 years ago, and if you want to do more — like hook it up to the TV — expect to pay a premium for the accessories. 

    If you really want flexibility, you know where to go.

    • http://twitter.com/jrinka Jason Rinka

      I can think of 300 reasons I’d use this over an iPad, and they’re all dollars.

  • Noonienoonie

    Why use the iPad as the better choice? It doesn’t even have extended storage, nor be able to communicate with other Bluetooth-enabled devices that isn’t “Made for the iPad”. Sure it’s the most popular tablet out there but it hardly excels in its said features aside from being very usable. Its picture quality sucks, the screen is from 2 years ago, and if you want to do more — like hook it up to the TV — expect to pay a premium for the accessories. 

    If you really want flexibility, you know where to go.

    • http://twitter.com/jrinka Jason Rinka

      I can think of 300 reasons I’d use this over an iPad, and they’re all dollars.

    • http://twitter.com/jrinka Jason Rinka

      I can think of 300 reasons I’d use this over an iPad, and they’re all dollars.

    • http://twitter.com/jrinka Jason Rinka

      I can think of 300 reasons I’d use this over an iPad, and they’re all dollars.

  • Noonienoonie

    Why use the iPad as the better choice? It doesn’t even have extended storage, nor be able to communicate with other Bluetooth-enabled devices that isn’t “Made for the iPad”. Sure it’s the most popular tablet out there but it hardly excels in its said features aside from being very usable. Its picture quality sucks, the screen is from 2 years ago, and if you want to do more — like hook it up to the TV — expect to pay a premium for the accessories. 

    If you really want flexibility, you know where to go.

  • Noonienoonie

    Why use the iPad as the better choice? It doesn’t even have extended storage, nor be able to communicate with other Bluetooth-enabled devices that isn’t “Made for the iPad”. Sure it’s the most popular tablet out there but it hardly excels in its said features aside from being very usable. Its picture quality sucks, the screen is from 2 years ago, and if you want to do more — like hook it up to the TV — expect to pay a premium for the accessories. 

    If you really want flexibility, you know where to go.

  • Anne Thomas

    I have the ipad2, I would have picked up the hp touchpad firesale for a college tablet for my daughter. Unfortunately…

  • Anne Thomas

    I have the ipad2, I would have picked up the hp touchpad firesale for a college tablet for my daughter. Unfortunately…

  • Anne Thomas

    I have the ipad2, I would have picked up the hp touchpad firesale for a college tablet for my daughter. Unfortunately…

  • Anne Thomas

    I have the ipad2, I would have picked up the hp touchpad firesale for a college tablet for my daughter. Unfortunately…

  • Newton Smartt

    “Don’t believe me? Take a second and call your parents and ask them what they do in the cloud.” That’s not fair. Usage of this device (I assume) will not require you to understand the concept of the cloud or anything like that. Instead, users will be told that deleting their content will remove it from their device but that it will be available in (whatever time they specify) if they want it back. It’s not cloud storage to your parents; it’s temporary deletion. If I’m wrong, I’ll be disappointed.

    That said, I definitely intend to get one. I’ve wanted a kindle for a while now, and I’m looking forward to ordering.

  • Newton Smartt

    “Don’t believe me? Take a second and call your parents and ask them what they do in the cloud.” That’s not fair. Usage of this device (I assume) will not require you to understand the concept of the cloud or anything like that. Instead, users will be told that deleting their content will remove it from their device but that it will be available in (whatever time they specify) if they want it back. It’s not cloud storage to your parents; it’s temporary deletion. If I’m wrong, I’ll be disappointed.

    That said, I definitely intend to get one. I’ve wanted a kindle for a while now, and I’m looking forward to ordering.

  • Newton Smartt

    “Don’t believe me? Take a second and call your parents and ask them what they do in the cloud.” That’s not fair. Usage of this device (I assume) will not require you to understand the concept of the cloud or anything like that. Instead, users will be told that deleting their content will remove it from their device but that it will be available in (whatever time they specify) if they want it back. It’s not cloud storage to your parents; it’s temporary deletion. If I’m wrong, I’ll be disappointed.

    That said, I definitely intend to get one. I’ve wanted a kindle for a while now, and I’m looking forward to ordering.

  • Newton Smartt

    “Don’t believe me? Take a second and call your parents and ask them what they do in the cloud.” That’s not fair. Usage of this device (I assume) will not require you to understand the concept of the cloud or anything like that. Instead, users will be told that deleting their content will remove it from their device but that it will be available in (whatever time they specify) if they want it back. It’s not cloud storage to your parents; it’s temporary deletion. If I’m wrong, I’ll be disappointed.

    That said, I definitely intend to get one. I’ve wanted a kindle for a while now, and I’m looking forward to ordering.

  • http://twitter.com/wetcloud Kathleen Kiser

    ummm I might be wearing down – The more I think about it…

  • http://twitter.com/wetcloud Kathleen Kiser

    ummm I might be wearing down – The more I think about it…

  • http://twitter.com/wetcloud Kathleen Kiser

    ummm I might be wearing down – The more I think about it…

  • http://twitter.com/wetcloud Kathleen Kiser

    ummm I might be wearing down – The more I think about it…

  • Gabriel Flores

    I am not sure I’d buy one of these devices… especially since the books aren’t included LOL!  I am not really into 2-dimensional book reading yet!  

  • Gabriel Flores

    I am not sure I’d buy one of these devices… especially since the books aren’t included LOL!  I am not really into 2-dimensional book reading yet!  

  • Gabriel Flores

    I am not sure I’d buy one of these devices… especially since the books aren’t included LOL!  I am not really into 2-dimensional book reading yet!  

  • Gabriel Flores

    I am not sure I’d buy one of these devices… especially since the books aren’t included LOL!  I am not really into 2-dimensional book reading yet!  

  • http://twitter.com/GayeCrispin Gaye Crispin

    Cool and shared:)

  • http://twitter.com/GayeCrispin Gaye Crispin

    Cool and shared:)

  • http://twitter.com/GayeCrispin Gaye Crispin

    Cool and shared:)

  • http://twitter.com/GayeCrispin Gaye Crispin

    Cool and shared:)

  • Greengaloup

    Considering Amazon is not shy to share their kindle content with any other OS, and considering i already have a Kindle 2, I see no need to invest in a Kindle with collor. I would ratter buy a asus eee pad transformer, for the sharing capacity and extra sd/usb port, and download the free amazon kindle app on the android market to have full access to my kindle content. As for the cloud, it is the same. It is not exclusive to the kindle fire and can be accessed with other devices. 

    Also, I have bought books from the amazon kindle store, but also the kobo store (which is also free on the android market) so invest in a tablet/ebook reader who do not have access to android market would cut me from almost 1/4 of my virtual library. 

    In my opinion, the I pad have nothing to fear. The kindle fire is a direct competition to only ebooks readers. Kobo, nook and barns & noble will fells more the bite of amazon’s new gadget than tablet with more than minimum features. 

  • Greengaloup

    Considering Amazon is not shy to share their kindle content with any other OS, and considering i already have a Kindle 2, I see no need to invest in a Kindle with collor. I would ratter buy a asus eee pad transformer, for the sharing capacity and extra sd/usb port, and download the free amazon kindle app on the android market to have full access to my kindle content. As for the cloud, it is the same. It is not exclusive to the kindle fire and can be accessed with other devices. 

    Also, I have bought books from the amazon kindle store, but also the kobo store (which is also free on the android market) so invest in a tablet/ebook reader who do not have access to android market would cut me from almost 1/4 of my virtual library. 

    In my opinion, the I pad have nothing to fear. The kindle fire is a direct competition to only ebooks readers. Kobo, nook and barns & noble will fells more the bite of amazon’s new gadget than tablet with more than minimum features. 

  • Greengaloup

    Considering Amazon is not shy to share their kindle content with any other OS, and considering i already have a Kindle 2, I see no need to invest in a Kindle with collor. I would ratter buy a asus eee pad transformer, for the sharing capacity and extra sd/usb port, and download the free amazon kindle app on the android market to have full access to my kindle content. As for the cloud, it is the same. It is not exclusive to the kindle fire and can be accessed with other devices. 

    Also, I have bought books from the amazon kindle store, but also the kobo store (which is also free on the android market) so invest in a tablet/ebook reader who do not have access to android market would cut me from almost 1/4 of my virtual library. 

    In my opinion, the I pad have nothing to fear. The kindle fire is a direct competition to only ebooks readers. Kobo, nook and barns & noble will fells more the bite of amazon’s new gadget than tablet with more than minimum features. 

  • Amill

    “Will the average consumer be so savvy to utilize cloud storage?”…Go ask the same thing to parents with iPads. The point for cloud storage is that the user shouldn’t have to worry about it, be it on Kindle Fire or iPad iCloud.

  • Amill

    “Will the average consumer be so savvy to utilize cloud storage?”…Go ask the same thing to parents with iPads. The point for cloud storage is that the user shouldn’t have to worry about it, be it on Kindle Fire or iPad iCloud.

  • Amill

    “Will the average consumer be so savvy to utilize cloud storage?”…Go ask the same thing to parents with iPads. The point for cloud storage is that the user shouldn’t have to worry about it, be it on Kindle Fire or iPad iCloud.

  • Devcott

    I’ve been waiing to purchase a Kindle until they were available in color.  But I have not yet read enough about the Kindle Fire to know if it will work in sunlight like the older Kindles.  Since I only rarely use a cell phone ( I keep one in the car for “emergencies”), I don’t think I really care that the Kindle does not do everything a full tablet does — although maybe GPS would be nice.  Has anyone actually purchased a Kindle Fire and tried it out in the sun? I’d be interested in knowing.

  • Devcott

    I’ve been waiing to purchase a Kindle until they were available in color.  But I have not yet read enough about the Kindle Fire to know if it will work in sunlight like the older Kindles.  Since I only rarely use a cell phone ( I keep one in the car for “emergencies”), I don’t think I really care that the Kindle does not do everything a full tablet does — although maybe GPS would be nice.  Has anyone actually purchased a Kindle Fire and tried it out in the sun? I’d be interested in knowing.

  • Devcott

    I’ve been waiing to purchase a Kindle until they were available in color.  But I have not yet read enough about the Kindle Fire to know if it will work in sunlight like the older Kindles.  Since I only rarely use a cell phone ( I keep one in the car for “emergencies”), I don’t think I really care that the Kindle does not do everything a full tablet does — although maybe GPS would be nice.  Has anyone actually purchased a Kindle Fire and tried it out in the sun? I’d be interested in knowing.