Amazon Shows Off Two New Kindle Tablets
Amazon has announced the expected upgrades to its Android OS based Kindle Fire tablet, with a HD variant. The Kindle Fire HD now comes with LTE support, for all 10 radio spectrum bands, as well as an upgraded Wi-Fi connection with dual antenna, dual-band, and MIMO where supported by the hotspot.
There are two versions, an 8.9" display and a 7" display model. The 8.9" display on Kindle Fire HD features 254 pixels per inch with a resolution of 1920x1200, with pixels that are indistinguishable to the human eye. The 7" Kindle Fire HD features a display with 1280x800 resolution.
Most tablet displays are made up of two pieces of glass -- an LCD on the bottom and a touch sensor on the top, separated by an air gap. This air gap allows light to come through the touch sensor and reflect off the LCD, which causes added glare for the user. Amazon said that the Fire HD solves this air gap problem by laminating the touch sensor and the LCD together into a single layer of glass, creating a display that is easy to view even in overhead light, and reducing glare by 25% relative to the latest generation of Apple's iPad.
The tablets also come with Skype support built-in, along with a front facing camera for video calls.
The 8.9" Kindle Fire HD is powered by an OMAP4 4470 processor and Imagination SGX544 graphics engine capable of over 12 billion floating point operations per second -- 50 percent more than Tegra 3, and both Kindle Fire HD 7" and 8.9" come with higher memory bandwidth than Tegra 3.
"We're taking on the most popular price point for a tablet, $499, but doubling the storage and incredibly, adding ultra-fast 4G LTE wireless," said Jeff Bezos, Amazon.com Founder and CEO. "Kindle Fire HD is not only the most-advanced hardware, it's also a service. When combined with our enormous content ecosystem, unmatched cross-platform interoperability and standard-setting customer service, we hope people will agree that Kindle Fire HD is the best high-end tablet anywhere, at any price."
Amazon is also introducing an upgraded version of the existing Kindle Fire with a faster processor, twice the memory and longer battery life, and a lower US$159 price tag.
The new Kindle Fire HD 7" model will sell for $199, while the 8.9" screen model will sell for $499.
Sales start on the 20th November.