Amazon's New Kindle Fire: Ultra Cheap, Color, WiFi, and More

Dennis Faas's picture

According to a new report, Amazon's highly-anticipated Kindle Fire tablet (which offers full color, a 7" multi-touch display, and Wi-Fi access) could take a big bite out of Apple's iPad sales. A leaked chart shows that Amazon has already received more than a quarter of a million pre-orders for the device.

For those that missed it, last week Amazon unveiled its 7-inch WiFi-enabled Kindle Fire tablet, originally designed to view eBooks. The latest Kindle offering is much more than an eBook reader, however. The latest version of the Kindle (Amazon's page) states that the Kindle is now much more of a multi-media device than a designated eBook reader.

From Amazon's web site:

  • Movies, apps, games, music, reading and more, plus Amazon's revolutionary, cloud-accelerated web browser
  • Access to 18 million movies, TV shows, songs, magazines, and books
  • Uses Amazon Appstore - thousands of popular apps and games
  • Ultra-fast web browsing - Amazon Silk
  • Free cloud storage for all your Amazon content
  • Vibrant color touchscreen with extra-wide viewing angle
  • Fast, powerful dual-core processor
  • Amazon Prime members enjoy unlimited, instant streaming of over 10,000 popular movies and TV shows

The best part is the fact that the online retail giant says the device will sell for just $199, less than half of the lowest-priced Apple iPad.

It's since been reported that Amazon will lose about $10 on every unit sold, suggesting the company is ready to go in the hole in order to get a fast start on Apple. (Source:

2,000 Kindle Fire Tablets Sold Every Hour

The strategy appears to be working.

Tech blog 'Cult of Android' reports that it recently acquired a leaked table from Amazon showing that the firm had received more than 254,000 pre-orders for the Kindle Fire in just the first five days since it was unveiled. Doing the math, that means people are ordering Kindle Fire tablets at a rate of 2,000 per hour. (Source:

Cult of Android believes that if such a trend continues, Apple could be in for a pounding.

"If this level of consumer demand for the Kindle Fire continues, Amazon will have 2.5 million preorders for the device before it officially goes on sale on November 15th," the site said. (Source:

Analysts Stop Short of Predicting iPad Demise

Industry analyst Neil Mawston agrees that the uber-cheap Kindle Fire will probably weaken Apple's hold on the nascent tablet market. However, he stopped short of predicting the iPad's demise.

"We expect Amazon's Fire to put a sizeable dent in Apple's armor, but it will not be an iPad killer," Mawston said.

Of course, the real test for Amazon will come after the Kindle Fire's release in mid-November. Whether this device can truly challenge the iPad will largely depend on critic and consumer reviews this holiday season.

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