Amazon reportedly planning switch to 8.9" display for next-gen Kindle Fire

Posted:
in iPad edited January 2014
Amazon is rumored to be changing its product roadmap for its 7-inch Kindle Fire tablet, with plans to make the second-generation model with an 8.9-inch display.



According to a brief report from DigiTimes, Amazon had originally planned to release a 10.1-inch Kindle Fire next year, but will instead go with the 8.9-inch form factor.



"Amazon's current 7-inch panel suppliers Chunghwa Picture Tubes and LG Display reportedly have begun to prepare production capacities for 8.9-inch displays, added the sources," said the report.



Insiders also hinted that Amazon could follow up the 8.9-inch Fire with "9.7- to 10.1-inch models" later that year.



The 7-inch Kindle Fire was unveiled in September, though it will not hit the market until Nov. 15. Amazon is building "millions more" of the $199 device than originally planned, but the tablet's low margins will take a toll on the company's profitability. It warned during an earnings call last month that fourth quarter earnings could fall as low as a $200 million loss.



The online retailer reportedly tapped Quanta to produce the Kindle Fire because its usual manufacturing partner, Foxconn, was kept busy with Apple's iPad 2 orders.







For its part, Apple has said it is not worried about the Kindle Fire. Apple's top brass reportedly told an analyst recently that the device would only serve to further fragment the tablet market.



Sales of the iPad have continued to surge, with the company selling 11.12 million units in the most recent quarter.



AppleInsider reported in September that Amazon views the Kindle Fire as a device to "test the waters" for next year's tablet lineup. Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of Concord Securities said the company is working on an 8.9-inch tablet with an "amazing form factor," as well as a 10.1-inch tablet, code-named "Coyote."
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 58
    For the sake of competition, I'm glad Amazon is finding success with the Kindle but it makes no sense to produce an 8.9" and a 10.1" tablet. Just choose one, stick with it & improve it over time.



    If were them I'd choose the 10.1". Apple's proven that sweet spot for tablets in terms of delivering mobility and a decent user experience is between around 9.7".
  • Reply 2 of 58
    realisticrealistic Posts: 1,121member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tru_canuk View Post


    For the sake of competition, I'm glad Amazon is finding success with the Kindle but it makes no sense to produce an 8.9" and a 10.1" tablet. Just choose one, stick with it & improve it over time.



    If were them I'd choose the 10.1". Apple's proven that sweet spot for tablets in terms of delivering mobility and a decent user experience is between around 9.7".



    Too early to call the Fire a success since Amazon loses money on each one sold, for now at least.
  • Reply 3 of 58
    So before the first one hits the shelves they are already outdating it. Or at least confusing you with too many options of "things to come". Yeah the Apple people can rest easy, this will be an upgrade for kindle only users(there are a lot of them though) but I don't think it will draw people hunting for real tablets.
  • Reply 4 of 58
    boogabooga Posts: 1,077member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rtapps View Post


    So before the first one hits the shelves they are already outdating it. Or at least confusing you with too many options of "things to come". Yeah the Apple people can rest easy, this will be an upgrade for kindle only users(there are a lot of them though) but I don't think it will draw people hunting for real tablets.



    Hard to tell. I see an awful lot of iPads on the commuter ferry each day. If you have millions of commuters around the world currently buying iPads, I could see a Kindle that could play Angry Birds or crossword puzzles catching on. Of course, it would have to have better internet capabilities to own the market, but it could make some serious headway.
  • Reply 5 of 58
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    For its part, Apple has said it is not worried about the Kindle Fire. Apple's top brass reportedly told an analyst recently that the device would only serve to further fragment the Google Android platform.






    Wrong! Apple did not say Amazon's Kindle Fire would fragment the Google Android platform.



    They said it "...could fuel further fragmentation in the tablet market..."
  • Reply 6 of 58
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tru_canuk View Post


    For the sake of competition, I'm glad Amazon is finding success with the Kindle but it makes no sense to produce an 8.9" and a 10.1" tablet. Just choose one, stick with it & improve it over time.



    If were them I'd choose the 10.1". Apple's proven that sweet spot for tablets in terms of delivering mobility and a decent user experience is between around 9.7".



    Amazon is probably forced to make a 7" tablet because of cost and parts availability considerations. It is clear that non-iPad tablets are not able to hold their own at iPad price points. In order for iPad competitors to find a foothold, it appears that they need to hit a certain price point well below that of a comparably equipped iPad. The easiest ways to do this are to reduce the cost (the display panel is the most expensive part of a media tablet) and to squeeze profit margins.



    A 10.1" panel would not be any cheaper than the iPad's 9.7" panel, especially since Apple is getting better pricing by purchasing tens of millions of units per quarter. Remember that the Motorola Xoom only sold about 100,000 units the last quarter whereas Apple sold 11+ million iPads during the same timeframe.



    Despite the fact that the 7" form factor has been a failure in for media tablets, Amazon is probably gambling on the hope that consumers won't see the Kindle Fire as a competitor to the iPad, but more of a "color Kindle with benefits," a blinged-out e-book reader.
  • Reply 7 of 58
    jd_in_sbjd_in_sb Posts: 1,483member
    Apple is selling 5,000+ iPads an hour, 24 hours per day. It will be difficult to match that.
  • Reply 8 of 58
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rtapps View Post


    So before the first one hits the shelves they are already outdating it. Or at least confusing you with too many options of "things to come". Yeah the Apple people can rest easy, this will be an upgrade for kindle only users(there are a lot of them though) but I don't think it will draw people hunting for real tablets.







    Will Apple drop their 15" MBP because they also sell a 17" version? No. They both have their own market.
  • Reply 9 of 58
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Realistic View Post


    Too early to call the Fire a success since Amazon loses money on each one sold, for now at least.



    I should've made myself more clear. When I meant success, I meant in terms of units sold, not profitability.
  • Reply 10 of 58
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tru_canuk View Post


    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Realistic View Post


    Too early to call the Fire a success since Amazon loses money on each one sold, for now at least.



    I should've made myself more clear. When I meant success, I meant in terms of units sold, not profitability.





    Fire's success isn't measured by how much money Amazon makes on each one sold, nor the number sold, it's measured by how much money it brings in after it's sold.
  • Reply 11 of 58
    tylerk36tylerk36 Posts: 1,037member
    I wonder is Amazon is trying to get a feel for which size and type will sell the most. Then they will go with that one. We will have to see.



    For the most part I see this as good competition. We need this in the market. It creates better products in the long run.
  • Reply 12 of 58
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Russell View Post


    Will Apple drop their 15" MBP because they also sell a 17" version? No. They both have their own market.



    Tablet market and laptop market are two entirely different things. Also I did not say drop I said outdate two different things.



    That being said. I hope the Fire sells well. It looks to be an excellent addition to the e-reader market with a few nice extras. i just don't see it as a real competitor in the full tablet market.
  • Reply 13 of 58
    daharderdaharder Posts: 1,580member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tylerk36 View Post


    I wonder is Amazon is trying to get a feel for which size and type will sell the most. Then they will go with that one. We will have to see.



    For the most part I see this as good competition. We need this in the market. It creates better products in the long run.



    More like... They just realize that the world's not 'one size fits all' and want to offer the Fire in a choice of sizes.



    Not unlike Apple does with the iMac and MacBook-series, or Amazon already does with the current Kindle-series.
  • Reply 14 of 58
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tru_canuk View Post


    For the sake of competition, I'm glad Amazon is finding success with the Kindle but it makes no sense to produce an 8.9" and a 10.1" tablet. Just choose one, stick with it & improve it over time.



    If were them I'd choose the 10.1". Apple's proven that sweet spot for tablets in terms of delivering mobility and a decent user experience is between around 9.7".



    Apple has proven no such thing.



    Success based on a 9.7" screen is correlation not causation, i.e., Apple have shown that they can successfully sell the iPad which has a 9.7" screen, that doesn't mean the iPad is successful because it has a 9.7" screen.



    The Xoom and Galaxy Tab sales are a case in point. You think Samsung and Motorola would would have suddenly sold millions of tablets if they had built them with 9.7" screens instead of 10.1"?



    I would argue that a price point which gives a good sense of "value" is actually more important.



    The HP TouchPad is a good example of this. At $500 it was perceived to be a "bad value" purchase and didn't sell well. At $99 the same tablet was seen as very "good value", and was stripped from the shelves in a day.
  • Reply 15 of 58
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Firefly7475 View Post


    I would argue that a price point which gives a good sense of "value" is actually more important.



    The HP TouchPad is a good example of this. At $500 it was perceived to be a "bad value" purchase and didn't sell well. At $99 the same tablet was seen as very "good value", and was stripped from the shelves in a day.



    ?and then discontinued, because that was less than half what HP paid to make them?



    Great value for consumers, maybe. Terrible value for the manufacturer.
  • Reply 16 of 58
    tylerk36tylerk36 Posts: 1,037member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by DaHarder View Post


    More like... They just realize that the world's not 'one size fits all' and want to offer the Fire in a choice of sizes.



    Not unlike Apple does with the iMac and MacBook-series, or Amazon already does with the current Kindle-series.



    True.
  • Reply 17 of 58
    Well, we'll never know if Kindle Fire ever outsells the iPad cuz Amazon ain't talkin'.
  • Reply 18 of 58
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rtapps View Post


    That being said. I hope the Fire sells well. It looks to be an excellent addition to the e-reader market with a few nice extras. I just don't see it as a real competitor in the full tablet market.



    I think this is an interesting enough concept to warrant exploration.



    What feature-set do you believe justifies classification as a "full tablet".



    Do we start drawing the lines between "content creation" and "content consumption" again?



    There are a number of basic "content consumption" tasks that both the iPad and the Kindle Fire will perform well. For example reading email, news or a book, checking Facebook, watching a TV show or movie or playing a game.



    Then there are more complex "content creation" tasks like researching a paper, writing a report, designing a presentation or creating a spreadsheet. These are things that an iPad can do, but only poorly. A Kindle Fire will perform them even worse.



    Then there are more advanced "content consumption" tasks such as phone to tablet gaming, connecting a remote desktop to a PC, or AirPlay gaming that the iPad can do very well but the Kindle Fire cannot.



    It would seem to me that handling the basic "content consumption" tasks would justify classification as a "basic tablet".



    Classification as a "full tablet" appears to be far more difficult.



    Focusing on the ability to perform advanced "content consumption" tasks, however poorly, seems like an odd thing to do. This area will become increasingly messy as more tablets are released that are designed specifically toward advanced "content consumption" tasks. For example, it will be hard to classify an iPad and an x86 Windows 8 tablet as the same thing.



    However this leaves us with the features that exist on the iPad that don't exist on the Kindle Fire as being the definition of a "full tablet", which seems kind of arbitrary.



    Thoughts?
  • Reply 19 of 58
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Firefly7475 View Post


    Apple has proven no such thing.



    Success based on a 9.7" screen is correlation not causation, i.e., Apple have shown that they can successfully sell the iPad which has a 9.7" screen, that doesn't mean the iPad is successful because it has a 9.7" screen.



    The Xoom and Galaxy Tab sales are a case in point. You think Samsung and Motorola would would have suddenly sold millions of tablets if they had built them with 9.7" screens instead of 10.1"?



    I would argue that a price point which gives a good sense of "value" is actually more important.



    The HP TouchPad is a good example of this. At $500 it was perceived to be a "bad value" purchase and didn't sell well. At $99 the same tablet was seen as very "good value", and was stripped from the shelves in a day.



    I agree that it's not yet proven but given apples success it's at least a good indicator and one which other tablet manufactures are paying attention to closely I'd guess. It may be that motorola and samsung were close enough in size but were lacking in other areas.



    The hp touchpad isn't a good example of anything except the fact that people like things that are nearly free.
  • Reply 20 of 58
    cpsrocpsro Posts: 2,432member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of Concord Securities said the company is working on an 8.9-inch tablet with an "amazing form factor," as well as a 10.1-inch tablet, code-named "Coyote."



    bow, wow
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