Amazon’s tablets have been a boon to budget-conscious consumers. Their tablets have boasted impressive specs from the introduction of the first Kindle Fire, at the time a tablet with less of the Apple iPad’s cachet, but with most of its functionality, for a fraction of the cost. Last year’s Fire HD updates brought improved speeds and graphics and inevitable comparisons to the iPad which, at that time, Amazon exploited in their advertising.
Even though Amazon has acknowledged that their Kindle Fire line costs more to make than their selling price, Amazon has used the Fire to vector customers to their store and media services, selling many Prime memberships along the way.
The new Kindle Fire HDX lines are more than just updated. The displays sport near-Retina resolutions and now offer 4G connectivity, for much less outlay than an iPad with similar features. What’s more, there’s a “Mayday” button that connect the user, free of charge, to support for their Kindle, 365 days a year, 24 hours a day. So, there’s no chance that Grandma will be calling you at midnight to help her figure out how to access “On Golden Pond” on Netflix. Put it on the Christmas list!
It’s true that Amazon’s version of Android is a custom flavour, but this should be a concern only to Android purists. For the average user, the newly-redesigned interface is even more straightforward and intuitive than before and is clearly in tune with media-centric consumers.
Apple has always had the edge in terms of design bling. Is that enough to fight off the competition? It’s looking close: very close.