Amazon Kindle Fire HD refresh to mix high-end specs, affordable price

By on July 30, 2013, 4:00 PM

Amazon’s next-generation Kindle Fire tablets are set to arrive this fall. But whereas past devices have focused primarily on value, with mid range internals capable of handling most tablet-centric tasks, this time around the company is pulling the big guns. According to a report on BGR, Amazon is going for three times the performance of the current lineup, and has enlisted Qualcomm’s top-tier Snapdragon 800 SoC to achieve this.

The site previously reported preliminary details on three upcoming devices. The first is a replacement for the entry-level 7-inch Kindle Fire tablet, which currently sells for $159, with a resolution bump to 1,280 x 800 pixels. The other two will be the Snapdragon 800 packing replacements for the current 7- and 8.9-inch HD models.

Prototype models of both the 7- and 8.9-inch Kindle Fire HD are said to have their processors clocked at 2GHz. They also share most other specs, including 2GB of RAM, a front-facing camera, Wi-Fi, optional LTE connectivity, as well as 16GB, 32GB and 64GB storage options. The larger model adds an 8-megapixel rear camera and a 2,560 x 1,600 resolution display, up from 1,920 x 1,200 on the 7-inch Kindle Fire HD.

In terms of software, internal test units are currently running Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean with Amazon’s heavy customizations, and BGR speculates this will remain unchanged given Amazon’s target launch window.

Compared to the new Nexus 7, which will likely end up its closest competitor, specs such as screen resolution and RAM are pretty much on par, but Amazon would certainly have the upper hand when it comes to graphics and processing power. It still misses out on the latest Android release and rear camera on the 7-incher, though.

BGR also claims  the new tablets are expected to be more comfortable and lighter than the current generation of Kindle Fires, and though pricing remains unknown, Amazon is said to be trying hard to maintain the same $199 and $299 starting price points of its current Kindle Fire HD lineup.




User Comments: 4

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Guest said:

I don't get why is hard to mantain that price when you can get 9.7 inch chinese tablets with specs like those for less than 230 dollars.

JC713 JC713 said:

I think I would go for a Nexus 7 over this. I hope they dont screw up.

ET3D, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I usually go for small and light devices, and I love my Nexus 7, but a recent encounter with a Nook HD+ made me feel that the larger screen does have its advantages for content consumption. I'll be waiting to see how the 8.9" Kindle turns out, in particular in terms of size and weight.

tipstir tipstir, TS Ambassador, said:

These are made for the Amazon Prime Services to use with Kindle so these tablets are not like your Clone Android tablets or Nexus 7 (ASUS) tablet. Can't really compare they all run Android so. I have Amazon Prime but won't buy this tablet since too me my Toshiba Thrive ICS with Tegra 2 inside still does a great job. Battery life is excellent with the IPS 10.1-inch panel. If you attach Microlab B51 made for Tablets boost the audio output to 4 watts = 2x 2 watts.

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