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Amazon outs high-resolution Kindle Fire HDX models, new Fire OS 3.0

post #1 of 46
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Online retail giant Amazon quietly unveiled new versions of its Kindle Fire line of devices this week, showing off a tweaked form factor and a novel on-screen helpdesk feature that could differentiate the company's lineup from Android tablets and Apple's iPad.

Kindle Fire HDX


The new Kindle Fire HDX devices come in 7-and 8.9-inch models, both featuring a more angular form factor and much higher display resolutions. The 7-inch model sports a resolution of 1920x1200 with a pixel density of 323 pixels per inch, while the 8.9-inch configuration outputs at 2560x1600. Amazon has also built in dynamic image contrast, allowing the device to alter its contrast to enable better reading even as lighting conditions shift.

Amazon has also worked to make the devices as light as possible, with the 8.9-inch version weighing in at 13.2 ounces, or seven ounces lighter than its predecessor. Inside, both devices will have a 2.2GHz quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor and 2GB of RAM, which will likely result in much smoother operation for the devices.

In terms of battery life, Amazon is promising 11 hours of standard use, an increase of one hour over the 8.9-inch model from last year. In the special reading mode, the device will reportedly last for 17 hours on a single charge.

Kindle Fire HDX


As with previous Kindle Fire devices, the new models run Amazon's Fire OS. Dubbed "Mojito," Amazon's latest OS is a forked version of Google's Android operating system, as were its predecessors.

Perhaps the most novel addition to the devices is a 24-7-365 online helpdesk with a video component. Amazon has built a "Mayday" button into Fire OS, allowing users to press it whenever they want and to be connected to a tech advisor. The tech advisor appears in an on-screen video chat box, but the advisor cannot see the device user. Once connected, the tech rep can walk a user through the steps of using a device, drawing help steps onto the user's screen.

Amazon has a goal of keeping wait times for this service down to 15 seconds or less. To that end, the company has reportedly brought on thousands of technical reps, and it can supposedly bring on more if necessary.

The retailer also refreshed last year's Kindle Fire HD device and dropped its price. The new Kindle Fire HD packs a 1.5GHz dual-core processor and the same display as last year's model, but Amazon remade the device's form factor to match this year's high-end models. It also runs Fire OS 3.0 Mojito, but without access to the helpdesk function, which requires a microphone that the older model lacks.

Kindle Fire HDX


Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos revealed the new devices in a much more reserved fashion than he did with last year's Kindle Fire devices. Instead of renting out an airplane hangar, Bezos showed off the devices to members of the media in an Amazon conference room.

"Today, we're going to show you the third leg of our device business strategy," Bezos said, according to Engadget. Before showing off that third feature ? the new Kindle Fire HDX devices ? he named the first two. "One: premium products at non premium prices. Two: make money when people use our devices, not when they buy our devices."

The 7-inch and 8.9-inch models of the Kindle Fire HDX are currently available for pre-order starting at $229 and $379 respectively. The new Kindle Fire HD is also available for preorder starting at $139. The HDX models will begin shipping on October 18, while the new Fire HD will begin shipping on October 8.
post #2 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Amazon has a goal of keeping wait times for this service down to 15 seconds or less. To that end, the company has reportedly brought on thousands of technical reps, and it can supposedly bring on more if necessary. .

Let's see if we can understand this business model:

- Sell the hardware at cost.
- Add tens of millions of dollars in new employees to support the buggy hardware.
- Sell popular ebooks below cost.

Not clear how they're going to make money with that.

Oh, wait. They're not making money. 1smoking.gif
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Gatorguy 5/31/13
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post #3 of 46
I think not making money is a great business strategy. No wonder the Analysts all love Amazon.

You just have to rename losing money a business strategy. And voila!
post #4 of 46
The specs are nice, but the interface is still just terrible. I am assuming the low res icons will now look even worse when in the carousel on these HD screens. On the other hand, the "mayday" button, if it works as advertized, seems to be very cool idea. I am guessing that since they cater to a non enthusiast crowd, this will actually save them man hours over having tech support try to explain things over the phone.
post #5 of 46
Amazon has the price a features right in this one! I make a popular iPad app and Amazon Kindle is the only Android device if recommend. Easy to use and great hardware. Good job Amazon!
post #6 of 46
The analysts covering AMZN were reported to have been extremely excited when Bezos showed them his third leg. Price targets were raised.
post #7 of 46

Does anyone care about this Kindle?

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https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/09/id854675423?mt=8

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09 - the most interesting puzzle on AppStore

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/09/id854675423?mt=8

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post #8 of 46
Amazon has built a “ ayday” button into Fire OS, allowing users to press it whenever they want

 

Ah. ha. ha ha ha ha ha HA HA HA HA HA HA. Amazon’ll be at the bottom of tablet customer satisfaction charts next quarter.

 
The tech advisor appears in an on-screen video chat box, but the advisor cannot see the device user. 

 

Or so they claim.

 
…drawing help steps onto the user’s screen. 

 

Screen sharing, however, is the one good takeaway from this system. Not sure how it could be used well on iOS yet, but it shouldn’t be ignored.

Originally Posted by asdasd

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post #9 of 46
How bad must this thing be to use when built in, 24hr tech support is a marquee feature?
post #10 of 46

all Kindle suck because the Kindle App store sucks.  So many essential apps are not in that store and need to be sideloaded.  I've owned a Kindle for 2 years and its now my toilet reader.  Even my nephew won't take it from me for free since he wants an iPadMini or nothing. brats. 

 

look at those massive Bezels on the 7, yuk.

post #11 of 46

It looks pretty good, and like that the product is mature enough to not have to bash Apple to make it like Microsoft is doing with the surface.

post #12 of 46

I love Amazon. I own all Apple devices except for a 3rd gen Kindle, but Amazon is one of the few competitors that are pushing Apple to add new features to their products to maintain their target audience and we all end up benefitting. I honestly believe iBooks would never have evolved without Amazon, and I fully expect screen sharing tech support to take off and show up in next year's iDevices. No need to reserve store space for training when virtual tech support and training is available wherever a user has internet access. I can see the user base doubling when the curious but non-tech savvy individuals are given this life-jacket to guide them into the age of infinite connectivity.

 

I am also very curious about this "Bonded glass and nylon" design, and what clarity, weight, and durability it may offer. Amazon is the reason Apple won't even try getting into the bottom budget device market.

post #13 of 46
Amazon will sell "millions*" of these things and Wall Street will go gaga for them.

*actual numbers not needed.
post #14 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


Let's see if we can understand this business model:

- Sell the hardware at cost.
- Add tens of millions of dollars in new employees to support the buggy hardware.
- Sell popular ebooks below cost.

Not clear how they're going to make money with that.

Oh, wait. They're not making money. 1smoking.gif

 

Well, their business model is based on reducing competition by lowering prices below possible profit levels and providing horrendous working conditions(low cost) for very low paid workers. Perhaps in the long run they will make money - as long as this throughly evil business model is financed. 

post #15 of 46

Perfect for when you run out of toilet paper :-Q

post #16 of 46
My GF's sister's stupid BF has a whole bookshelf of Kindles. He's a real d@#k!

He also has the latest and greatest BB, too! 1smile.gif
post #17 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chandra69 View Post
 

Does anyone care about this Kindle?

 

They have 22% of the tablet market, so I'd say yes (source: http://www.theverge.com/2013/9/25/4766878/jeff-bezos-interview-amazon-kindle-hdx)

 

I find the Mayday feature interesting, and something that I thought Apple would have done first, but other than that they don't really interest me. I'm sure millions of people will lap these up, but who am I to judge their decision/needs?

post #18 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mazda 3s View Post
 

 

They have 22% of the tablet market, so I'd say yes (source: http://www.theverge.com/2013/9/25/4766878/jeff-bezos-interview-amazon-kindle-hdx)

 

I find the Mayday feature interesting, and something that I thought Apple would have done first, but other than that they don't really interest me. I'm sure millions of people will lap these up, but who am I to judge their decision/needs?

 

22% is a total BS number.  Total BS.  Amazon has NEVER disclosed offical sales data and now the CEO says they are at 22%? BS.

post #19 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Baka-Dubbs View Post

The specs are nice, but the interface is still just terrible. I am assuming the low res icons will now look even worse when in the carousel on these HD screens. On the other hand, the "mayday" button, if it works as advertized, seems to be very cool idea. I am guessing that since they cater to a non enthusiast crowd, this will actually save them man hours over having tech support try to explain things over the phone.

 

Yeah, but the Kindle Fire (and most Kindles in general) are intended for the seniors in your life.  The people that don't understand the difference between an eReader and a tablet and have no clue about technology. Also, Amazon's main customer base are the cheapskates of the world, the people who just want things for free or cheap and don't care about quality.  For those groups of people, the issues you raise are non-existent.  

post #20 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cloud30000 View Post
 

I love Amazon. I own all Apple devices except for a 3rd gen Kindle, but Amazon is one of the few competitors that are pushing Apple to add new features ...

 

A dreamworld.  You are living in, it is. 

 

post #21 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by paxman View Post

Well, their business model is based on reducing competition by lowering prices below possible profit levels and providing horrendous working conditions(low cost) for very low paid workers.

Go to GlassDoor and compare salaries at Apple to those at Amazon. The results may not be what you'd expect.
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post #22 of 46
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Originally Posted by sog35 View Post

22% is a total BS number.  Total BS.  Amazon has NEVER disclosed offical sales data and now the CEO says they are at 22%? BS.

Sheesh, it's just a tablet. Calm down! I swear people here love to get worked up whenever a competitor is mentioned. From the linked article:
Quote:
Amazon said last year that it had nabbed an impressive 22 percent of the tablet market, and analysis from Pew Research and others seems to confirm the footprint, a growing footprint.

So it's not just Bezos rambling off numbers, there's other verification as well.
post #23 of 46

Two things:

 

(1) I have never felt the need for a "mayday" button with my iPad Mini.  It just works and is intuitive so I don't see a need for this feature on an iPad.

 

(2) Bezos' statement that Amazon will "make money when people use our devices, not when they buy our devices" is telling.  That seems to be Google's approach to hardware as well, and is likely a big reason that web activity from Android tablets is well below what it should be based upon their market share.

 

I think most people are like me and do not want to be bombarded with advertisements when using their tablets.  It degrades the experience.  Apple is careful to allow the option to purchase content without pushing it in the customer's face.  Hopefully that does not change.

post #24 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Harmon View Post

Two things:

(1) I have never felt the need for a "mayday" button with my iPad Mini.  It just works and is intuitive so I don't see a need for this feature on an iPad.

I've never felt the need either, but can't say the same for relatives with iPhones and iPads. I'm always the one that gets called when they have an issue with something. Nothing is more infuriating than trying to troubleshoot with a tech novice over the phone when you can't see their screen.

This feature is more for the technically challenged than AI readers.
post #25 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mazda 3s View Post

Sheesh, it's just a tablet. Calm down! I swear people here love to get worked up whenever a competitor is mentioned. From the linked article:
So it's not just Bezos rambling off numbers, there's other verification as well.

I'm sure the kindle is doing well. Just tell Jeff to release some numbers.
post #26 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mazda 3s View Post


Sheesh, it's just a tablet. Calm down! I swear people here love to get worked up whenever a competitor is mentioned. From the linked article:
So it's not just Bezos rambling off numbers, there's other verification as well.

 

I'm mad because you mentioned as if its a FACT.  And its far from it.  For every 'research publication' you mention that confirms the number there are 4 others that dispute it.  Just look at the data usage numbers for the Fire, its laughable.  As long as Bezos is hiding behind the curtain with tablets sold its not a FACT.  And any analysis can make up numbers also if it fits their needs. 

 

Look at IDC

http://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=prUS24253413

 

Fire does not even make the top5 worldwide. #5 only has a 3% share. 


Edited by sog35 - 9/25/13 at 1:30pm
post #27 of 46

Come get your new Kindle Fires!!!   .......crickets....

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post #28 of 46
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post
The HDX models will begin shipping on October 18, while the new Fire HD will begin shipping on October 8.

 

The two models have already rocketed to the top of Amazon’s Best Selling items list.

 

When asked how this was possible, Amazon referred to the number of them that had sold.

When asked for the number sold, Amazon referred to the placement of the two Kindle models at the top of the chart for evidence that they were selling well.

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post #29 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by sog35 View Post

I'm mad because you mentioned as if its a FACT.  And its far from it.  For every 'research publication' you mention that confirms the number there are 4 others that dispute it.  Just look at the data usage numbers for the Fire, its laughable.  As long as Bezos is hiding behind the curtain with tablets sold its not a FACT.  And any analysis can make up numbers also if it fits their needs. 

Look at IDC
http://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=prUS24253413

Fire does not even make the top5 worldwide. #5 only has a 3% share. 

And then there's the whole lumping all kindles together BS. Some Kindles are tablets, the others aren't.
post #30 of 46
Wow that is powerful hardware and high-end specs on the display...
post #31 of 46

Have you seen the TV ads (on the Amazon Web site) featuring the Mayday feature.  The woman you get to video chat with is really cute and perky, so I think it's going to be a great hit.  (I wonder if there will be a class action law suit if the cuteness and perkiness of the actual mayday drones don't measure up.)

post #32 of 46
Originally Posted by malax View Post
Have you seen the TV ads (on the Amazon Web site) featuring the Mayday feature.  The woman you get to video chat with is really cute and perky, so I think it's going to be a great hit.  (I wonder if there will be a class action law suit if the cuteness and perkiness of the actual mayday drones don't measure up.)

 

As advertised:

 

As received:

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post #33 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by jkichline View Post

Amazon has the price a features right in this one! I make a popular iPad app and Amazon Kindle is the only Android device if recommend. Easy to use and great hardware. Good job Amazon!

Is your app a spell-checker by chance?
post #34 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Amazon has a goal of keeping wait times for this service down to 15 seconds or less. To that end, the company has reportedly brought on thousands of technical reps, and it can supposedly bring on more if necessary. .

Let's see if we can understand this business model:

- Sell the hardware at cost.
- Add tens of millions of dollars in new employees to support the buggy hardware.
- Sell popular ebooks below cost.

Not clear how they're going to make money with that.

Oh, wait. They're not making money. 1smoking.gif

 

I could care less if "they" are making money. I don't have Amazon stock. All I care about is if they give me decent hardware for the right price. This is on target. Hopefully it pushes Apple to not be so damn greedy on their prices for tablets and especially memory upgrades.  Laugh all you want they are going to gain marketshare and customers.

post #35 of 46
Since when is shoving more and more pixels per inch in each update good? 1) double the battery eaten 2)screen distortion 3) software not truly updated 4) to much bang, not enough buck for that 5) who is really going to notice difference between HD and HD(X-if I understand right) 6)they must loose more money have more trouble building such a thing
There 6 reasons why no company should try to do it, but apple is the only company with since "we are the first to deliver perfect resolution" take apples now cheapness and add a 50 percent increase and were so perfect its impossible to notice.
post #36 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by jungmark View Post

Amazon will sell "millions*" of these things and Wall Street will go gaga for them.

*actual numbers not needed.

 

Actual numbers not preferred to prevent yet more internet debates. Apple releases some numbers and how does that resolve anything? People simply use the numbers in any perverse, irrational ways to support their perverse, irrational narratives.

 

Apple announces that they have sold n millions of iPhones. Fans and detractors will respectively find the up and down sides of this figure, regardless of n is. Actual numbers not needed because there are plenty of other misleading facts to fight over.

post #37 of 46

I don't understand all the criticism of Amazon - I admire them. As a customer they give me good service and huge choice; their prices are competitive too which is nice.

 

They have a business strategy of making money by selling content, not devices, so Kindles go at something close to cost. That's entirely logical when they are primarily a content provider (lots of books and stuff). We have yet to see how good a model it is but Amazon does make money, they just plough most of it back into the business - it costs money to diversify from books to, well, almost everything and from the US to most of the world. Don't forget that they're still a young company (eg compared to Apple).

 

I also don't get the comparison with Google: Amazon sells content and takes a profit from that, Google sells advertising and takes a profit from that. Let's not talk about which might be more noble but they are quite different. Apple, of course, sells devices (and gives away content, like iWork for iOS, to make them more attractive) which is different again.

 

My wife has an original Kindle as well as an iPad. The Kindle does just one thing, it lets you read books (ones without pictures). So on versatility it sucks but, in doing what it does, it blows the iPad into the weeds: try reading in bright light (like outdoors) or compare battery life, for example. It's dangerous to write off a device just because of what it can't do (my iPad has yet to make me a decent cup of tea ;) ).

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post #38 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Command_F View Post
 

I don't understand all the criticism of Amazon - I admire them. As a customer they give me good service and huge choice; their prices are competitive too which is nice.

 

They have a business strategy of making money by selling content, not devices, so Kindles go at something close to cost. That's entirely logical when they are primarily a content provider (lots of books and stuff). We have yet to see how good a model it is but Amazon does make money, they just plough most of it back into the business - it costs money to diversify from books to, well, almost everything and from the US to most of the world. Don't forget that they're still a young company (eg compared to Apple).

 

I also don't get the comparison with Google: Amazon sells content and takes a profit from that, Google sells advertising and takes a profit from that. Let's not talk about which might be more noble but they are quite different. Apple, of course, sells devices (and gives away content, like iWork for iOS, to make them more attractive) which is different again.

 

My wife has an original Kindle as well as an iPad. The Kindle does just one thing, it lets you read books (ones without pictures). So on versatility it sucks but, in doing what it does, it blows the iPad into the weeds: try reading in bright light (like outdoors) or compare battery life, for example. It's dangerous to write off a device just because of what it can't do (my iPad has yet to make me a decent cup of tea ;) ).

 

I'll tell you why there is a ton of criticism about Amazon:  Their bubble will burst in less than a decade a millions of middle class families will lose a TON of money of their stock.  An absolute ton.  We are talking 2000 bubble amounts.  I can see Amazon's value get cut by 75%.

 

Its a total scam by Amazon and Wall Street.  Mr Bezo's and his Wall Street partners are laughing all the way to the bank.  He frequently is selling the stock he owns and Wall Street is making a ton on options also.  When this whole thing blows up Bezo's will have several hundred million in the bank and so will Wall Street.  It will be the middle class guy holding the shares that will be shafted.  The analysist continue to preach Mr Bezo's pipe dream of growth then profits.  His dream that once he captures market share they will raise prices.  BS.  Once they raise prices people will leave Amazon as fast as they joined Amazon. 

 

Another reason why people hate Amazon is because of their anti-competitive practices.  They are literally selling goods at a loss.  Why?  The simply plan to run smaller business to bankruptcy.  It's evil that a company will do such disgusting things.  Imagine if you were one of those small to medium business that work hard to provide a good product at a reasonable price?  They a large company simply undercuts with price.  Imagine if you owned a resturant.  Then someone else opened a resturaunt across the street and started selling Dinner plates for $1.  You would be run out of business.  That is EXACTLY what amazon is doing.  They are like a massive parasite killing of thousands of companies each year, while making zero profit.  At least Walmart actually makes profits and prices things reasonabily.  So who is picking up the tab?  The small time investor.

 

And if Amazon does achieve its goal?  Then they WILL be able to raise their prices MASSIVELY since there won't be any competition in their way.  The last thing we need is another Monopoly.

post #39 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Command_F View Post

I don't understand all the criticism of Amazon - I admire them. As a customer they give me good service and huge choice; their prices are competitive too which is nice.

They have a business strategy of making money by selling content, not devices, so Kindles go at something close to cost.

Not quite. Their business strategy seems to be "we don't make significant profit on anything, but we'll make it up in volume". Growth for growth's sake is not turning out to be a winning strategy. Year after year after year, they keep telling investors "look at how much we've grown. Now that we've grown so much, we'll start making money next year". And year after year after year, the profits are disappointing (they're actually losing money now).

It is totally unfathomable how they were getting P/E ratios of several thousand last year - and the stock hasn't suffered much even when their profits disappeared entirely. Why in the world would you pay a massive premium for a company which has nice revenues, but has never figured out how to make a profit on them? And what little advantage they have is going away - as more and more states are taxing Internet sales.
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post #40 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Command_F View Post

I don't understand all the criticism of Amazon - I admire them. As a customer they give me good service and huge choice; their prices are competitive too which is nice.

They have a business strategy of making money by selling content, not devices, so Kindles go at something close to cost. That's entirely logical when they are primarily a content provider (lots of books and stuff). We have yet to see how good a model it is but Amazon does make money, they just plough most of it back into the business - it costs money to diversify from books to, well, almost everything and from the US to most of the world. Don't forget that they're still a young company (eg compared to Apple).

I also don't get the comparison with Google: Amazon sells content and takes a profit from that, Google sells advertising and takes a profit from that. Let's not talk about which might be more noble but they are quite different. Apple, of course, sells devices (and gives away content, like iWork for iOS, to make them more attractive) which is different again.

My wife has an original Kindle as well as an iPad. The Kindle does just one thing, it lets you read books (ones without pictures). So on versatility it sucks but, in doing what it does, it blows the iPad into the weeds: try reading in bright light (like outdoors) or compare battery life, for example. It's dangerous to write off a device just because of what it can't do (my iPad has yet to make me a decent cup of tea 1wink.gif  ).

As a customer, I use Amazon all the time. Mostly because of Prime shipping.

I do have a problem with how their stock is valued, and how they use political methods to protect their monopolistic practices.
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