Kindle Fire HD now runs Ice Cream Sandwich, unlike some ‘traditional’ Android tablets

by: Chris SmithSeptember 7, 2012

Amazon likes Android, we know that much as Jeff Bezos himself, the retailer’s CEO, said it in a recent interview. But one can argue that Amazon also hates the default, Google-approved version of Android because it has a different agenda than its own.

Although, when you come to think of it, each company tries to use Android in a way that would lock more customers into an ecosystem. Whether you choose the forked Android version Amazon is offering, or whether you want the “traditional” Android version that comes from Google, you’d still getting in bed with one of the two giants – not that there’s anything wrong with that. But we’ll talk about ecosystem integration at a later date.

What interests us is that Amazon has confirmed it made the jump to Ice Cream Sandwich, an Android version that’s almost one year old, but one that’s a long way from being ported to plenty of compatible devices out there. At least the Kindle Fire HD versions are running an Android 4.0-based OS – that includes the 7- and 8.9-inch models – but it’s yet to be determined whether the 2012 7-inch Kindle Fire has an ICS-based OS or not.

It’s worth arguing that Amazon is updating its Android OS version to ICS faster than, or at least at the same time with, other Android OEMs that have just recently updated some of their devices to Google’s 2011 OS or that are yet to offer the update.

That’s not so bad and one can only wonder how fast a Jelly Bean-based version will make it to the current Kindle Fire HD versions, or whether only next year’s Kindle Fires are going to come with a forked Jelly Bean version.

Let us hear from Android tablet owners out there, are you still waiting for an ICS update for your device? Would you consider getting an ICS-based Kindle Fire HD?

  • ickyfehmleh

    How drastically did Amazon modify Android? It seems they could have just put a new launcher app on an otherwise stock Android installation and, for the most part, called it a day. Skinning some of the setting screens was probably also in order, but that’s all fairly minor stuff.

    Anyone know?

    • Brandon Pearse

      So much that you cant even tell its android, unless your told it is. You can sideload apks (thankfully) but the whole ui, besides the launcher will look nothing like android. Best bet, is to install a rom like cm10

  • BoGoWo

    can’t imagine why anyone would want to tie them selves to a one trick pony; it’s almost like buying an apple iProduct; you can’t move in any direction but ‘blah’.
    Anything new is out side your ecosystem, and even though you get to buy two products, when you want to read a book, what you get is a nested “drm” lockBox.