When the Amazon Kindle Fire tablet was announced, I was intrigued. A small 7 inch tablet sold by Amazon.com for $199? Was the hardware any good, and is a 7 inch screen sufficient for a tablet? I already have a 10 inch Acer A500 Android tablet (which works great, by the way), so do I really need a 7 inch tablet also? Luckily, my intrigue and an October birthday made it an easy choice to pre-order the Kindle Fire which I received the 2nd week of November.
My big justification for getting a Kindle Fire was to test Android apps which I current develop for the Android smartphones and tablets. However, my plan would be to use the Kindle Fire as a personal tablet, as my larger Acer A500 tablet is a bit too bulky to tote around with me on trips to Starbucks or Panera Bread. So here’s my personal review after owning the Kindle Fire for about three weeks.
First, the Fire is well built and constructed of good components. The unit looks like a generic black-slab tablet with a very nice 1024×600 color screen. The device uses a variation of the Android OS, and runs very smoothly. As an average consumer, you’d never know it was running Android under the hood as Amazon has placed a nice, easy-to-use layer between the user and the OS. It can be limiting for advanced Android users, but works great for the general population to make the Fire much easier to use. As an advanced user, I have no complaints, as you can easily “side load” Android apps on the Fire with very little difficulty (and no need to root it). Read the rest of this entry »