At first glance, the Amazon Kindle Fire doesn’t appear to be an iPad killer. When you compare the hardware and technical specs of the new Amazon tablet next to those of the Apple tablet, there doesn’t seem to be much of a comparison: Apple’s 10-inch, 16GB iPad is a far cry from the 7-inch, 8GB first-generation Kindle Fire.
And yet the fact is that, at the end of the day, they’re both tablets, which means that consumers will probably be choosing between one or the other when it comes time to get a tablet. Unless you’re doing really well this recession, it would be hard to justify shelling out money for both an iPad (starting at $499) and a Kindle Fire (which costs $199, less than half of what it costs for Apple’s tablet).
How do you choose between them? Given everything we already know about the iPad (which has been out for 18 months), and all the also-rans that could not dethrone the iPad, here are the biggest advantages the Kindle Fire has over the iPad:
- It Runs Flash - Jeff Bezos confirmed in his speech that the Kindle Fire will indeed support Flash, a much-requested feature for the iPad and iPhone that Apple has shown little interest in including (neither the iPad nor iPhone support Flash) . We should also note that the Kindle Fire will also apparently beat all of the upcoming Windows tablets in this area too, as Microsoft has indicated that Windows 8 Metro will not run Flash.
It Costs Less - The cheapest model iPad 2 (that isn’t just a block of wood): $499 (that’s without 3G). The cheapest Kindle Fire: $199 (that’s also without 3G, and there is no amount of money you can pay to get 3G on your Kindle Fire, because a 3G Kindle Fire does not currently exist).
Still, the Kindle Fire beats the iPad by $300; now consumers must decide whether or not a WiFi-only iPad is worth $300 more than the new Amazon tablet.
- It Fits In Your Hand - Just like Android tablets have been offered for $200 before, so too have they been 7-inches. The Kindle Fire copies the poor-selling BlackBerry PlayBook‘s form and screen size: At 7-inches, the Kindle Fire can easily be held in one hand. The iPad 2, with its 10-inch screen can probably only be comfortably held in one hand by certain humongous basketball players.
- It Weighs Less - Along with having smaller dimensions than the iPad, the Kindle Fire is also lighter than its Apple competitor. At 14.6 ounces, it is significantly lighter than the 21.3 ounce iPad, making it, in all senses, more portable.
If all this stuff works like it should, it’s going to make browsing on WiFi on the Kindle Fire (especially to full web versions of webpages) very, very fast.
- It Has Both Wireless Mirroring And Native Streaming Media - Granted, the upcoming update to Apple’s mobile operating system iOS 5 will add wireless mirroring(the ability to transmit what is on your screen onto a connected TV or monitor without an accessory), but juuuust in case: Bezos showed off the Kindle Fire’s wireless mirroring at his keynote, and it looked pretty good. Add to that the option to add on Amazon Prime for Amazon’s streaming library, and you have a pretty powerful home entertainment hub that doesn’t require third-party apps or on-demand purchasing of video media.
- Kindle Fire: New Amazon Tablet Fires a Shot at Apple iPad | Search Engine Journal (seome.me)
- Kindle Fire: New Amazon Tablet Fires a Shot at Apple iPad (searchenginejournal.com)
- Can Kindle Fire match the iPad? (guardian.co.uk)
- Amazon Unveils Kindle Fire – WSJ.com (policyabcs.wordpress.com)
- Digits Live Show: Amazon’s Kindle Fire Takes Aim at Apple Ipad (blogs.wsj.com)
- Amazon Kindle Fire: It’s a Tablet for the Masses, not an iPad Killer. (slate.com)