Damn them. The Kindle Fire is about the same price as the higher end Kindle that I bought Julia just before her trip overseas…. oh well.

The Kindle Fire is an android based tablet designed to be an ebook.

Here’s why I want one: An iPad, which is also an eBook reader but that does a lot more stuff than a Kindle Fire, weighs 1.33 pounds. The Kindle Fire weighs 14.6 ounces. That puts the Kindle Fire just under the threshold for comfortable reading where you don’t have to prop it up. I’d like it to be lighter, but that’s a good start. (The regular Kindle, by the way, weighs about 6 ounces.)

The other nice thing about the Fire is that it does not require a computer to operate. The iPad does, even though it might not seem like it. Eventually, you’re going to want to hook your iPad up to a computer, but the Fire is designed to never need to do that. Since I don’t own a Mac, and my Windows computer that runs iTunes is in the Computer Hospice, that matters. Amanda’s iPad is about to become obsolete just sitting there.

Comments

  1. #1 Robert Thille
    September 28, 2011

    I’ve got a K3 (now K-Keyboard) and I’ve been thinking about getting a cheaper (WiFi only, Ad supported) version to share. Now I’m thinking the $79 version would be great. However, I’ve noticed that despite the supposedly higher-horsepower chip, they dropped support for audio (no speakers, no headphone jack, no support for MP3), so I might stick with the Keyboard version, or get a Kindle-Touch.
    So far, none of the coverage I’ve seen calls out that dropping of audio on the low end.

  2. #2 Greg Laden
    September 28, 2011

    Good point. I had not noticed that.

  3. #3 Left_Wing_Fox
    September 28, 2011

    The iPad should be usable as a stand-alone in a couple weeks; that’s one of the major listed features of iOS 5, which should be out around Oct 4th. You might still need to bring it into an Apple Store to get the update if your current system is hosed though.

  4. #4 Etcetera
    September 28, 2011

    I’m hesitant. They had grand designs, but ended up going with the same company that made RIM’s (Blackberry) Playbook. As it stands, the device is under-powered. Hopefully, that changes with the next generation.

  5. #5 Mark
    September 28, 2011

    Different devices for different uses. I use a Kindle as an e-reader. An iPad, which I don’t have. would probably be used for Web surfing, but almost certainly not for reading a book. Some day, probably soon after we win the lottery, I might buy an iPad. In the meantime, I’m reading more books now than I ever have.

  6. #6 CalderaGal
    September 28, 2011

    What happened to e-reading devices to save money on books? Now we have Nook color, an iPad, a Kindle, and a reader app on iPhone and MacBookPro. We haven’t saved money. Trees, yes, money, no.

  7. #7 Greg Laden
    September 28, 2011

    What happened to e-reading devices to save money on books?

    Hahahahaahahaha!!

    Probably saves on moving expenses.

  8. #8 kevin R
    September 28, 2011

    We have and iPad2 and a Kindle. I can never use the Kindle because it is never out of my wives reach. I do most of my internet reading on my HTC Evo phone. I am away from the house a large part of the day, the phone is always with me, and it is convenient to read sci-blogs and other news sites during breaks, waits, and other downtime during the day.

    the Kindle fire looks promising though

  9. #9 Greg Laden
    September 28, 2011

    Well, then, kevin, your wife will enjoy her new Kindle Fire that you’re getting her for the holidays!

  10. #10 Anonymosity
    September 29, 2011

    No 3-G though. It might not sound like much, but that’s a killer for me. The only “broad band” I get is satellite, which still compares itself to dial-up.

  11. #11 hoogreg
    September 29, 2011

    I went for an Android tablet (ASUS Transformer).

    So far, I’m 93% satisfied. It’s a pretty good computer, there are lots of apps available, and it seems to be quite reliable. I’m glad I spent the extra money for the keyboard, but I hate the fact that Android can’t reliably deliver CTRL+C and CTRL+V service, or even a reasonable facsimile thereof.

    Plus I’m not sure Amazon is such a good corporate citizen any more. HuffPo article.

  12. #12 John
    September 30, 2011

    I was hoping to snatch a $99 HP Touchpad and run Kindle For PC on it. Now there’s this fire thing for twice the money. If Mr. Bezos makes good on his claim of “many millions of these” the price might come down a bit next year. I’m going to wait.

  13. #13 Russell
    October 24, 2011

    There is certainly heavy competition for smaller tablets/e-readers right now but I’m sure that the Kindle Fire will lead the market. I just hope there is a UK release! http://www.kindlefireforum.co.uk

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