Amazon Kindle Fire to be Unveiled Tomorrow

September 27, 2011
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Amazon is going to hold an event tomorrow, and all rumors point to them announcing and showcasing their upcoming Android-based tablet, the Amazon Kindle Fire. The latest rumors about the specs of this tablet are very contradicting, with some saying the tablet will sport a dual-core OMAP 4 processor, while others are saying it will have an older OMAP 3 processor (much like the original Nook Color).

I don’t think Amazon should be fighting to have the best specs in this tablet, but it all depends on what kind of tablet they want to have in the first place. An OMAP 3 single core processor should be more than enough for what is basically still a reader. And it remains to be seen what display it will have to see if they really focused on the reader aspect of the tablet. Some rumors say it will have a hybrid e-ink/LCD of some sort. You don’t need a very powerful CPU to read books. Plus, it all depends on the pricing. If it’s under $200, then it should be a great value for a reader/tablet hybrid.

On the other hand, if it’s $300, I don’t think those kind of specs will be excusable. If they are going to sell it for $300, then they are making it a full media consumption device, being able to play HD video, to play more advanced games, and so on. It would also be great if it had an HD or 1280×800 resolution on that 7″ display, too. You’d get higher PPI for sharper fonts, and HD videos will be played at their natural resolution, too.

The tablet design and manufacturing has been “outsourced” to Quanta, the same company that made the Playbook, which is why it’s no coincidence the Kindle Fire will look almost the same as a Playbook. My only concern is with the weight, and thickness of the device. The Playbook is pretty thick and heavy, significantly more so than a Kindle 3 for example.

The tablet is actually rumored to be more of a stop-gap device that was intended to be available during the holiday season, which is why it was outsourced to Quanta and not designed in-house, and probably why it’s only based on Android 2.1, which is almost 2 years old OS, and lacks significant performance improvements from Froyo (JIT) and even Gingerbread (better garbage collection).

You won’t be able to recognize the Android interface, though, since Amazon has built their own user interface on top of Android, and they’ve completely customized the experience so you only have to use Amazon’s products and services, which might not be a bad thing if you actually want that and the tablet comes at a great price. However, it might affect your decision if you want the full and latest Android software and experience. But if the specs are good for the price, I figure some will get it anyway and put a custom ROM on it.

Would you consider the Kindle Fire because it would be a great reader/tablet hybrid or because it’s a cheap Android tablet that you could also root?

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