Amazon announces slew of new Kindle tablets

At a live event today, Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos announced new products at at Barker Hangar in Santa Monica, California.

Bezos unveiled the Kindle Paperwhite, a smaller, thinner Kindle Touch which will retail for $119, with 3G, it’s $179. Pre-orders begin today and the product ships on October 1.

The current Kindle Touch will remain on the market with a $10 price decrease from $79 to $69. It ships September 14th.

The Kindle Fire, with double the current RAM and claimed to be 40% faster with longer battery life gets a $40 price cut from $199 to $159. It also ships on September 14th.

Bezos then announced the “Kindle Fire HD” in two sizes:

• 8.9-inch (1920 x 1200, IPS, 254 ppi) display (iPad’s Retina Display is 9.7-inch IPS @ 2048 x 1536, 264 ppi) with dual stereo speakers (the first tablet with Dolby Digital Plus) and dual-band 2.4 and 5 GHz Wi-Fi with dual antennas. 8.8mm thick. (iPad with Retina display is 9.4 mm thick.) HD front-facing camera. with “Kindle FreeTime,” multi-user support (think kids) with time limits that can be set for various functions (TV, apps, etc.) HDMI out. Bluetooth.
– 16GB Wi-Fi-only – $299
– 32 GB with 4G LTE – $499 (Users get 250MB per month data, 20GB of Amazon cloud storage, and a $10 app store credit for US$49.99 per year)

• 7-inch, dual stereo speakers (the first tablet with Dolby Digital Plus) and dual-band 2.4 and 5 GHz Wi-Fi with dual antennas. HD front-facing camera. Multi-user support with time limits that can be set for various functions (TV, apps, etc.) HDMI out. Bluetooth.
– 16 GB – $199

8.9-in Kindle Fire HD ships on November 20th. 7-inch Kindle Fire HD ships September 14th.

MacDailyNews Take: Mr. Cook, the ball’s in your court.

46 Comments

    1. You’re not the target demographic. My wife has a $10 data plan. 100MB of data on her iPhone. Rarely does she go over it. She only uses it for email and occasional surfing. Wifi is used elsewhere. Usually google maps is the biggest data suck… iOS 6 Maps will reduce that, being vector-based.

      MOST people can survive with 500MB of data and 250MB if they don’t watch video.

  1. They are selling these at cost to make money from the sales of content.

    Excellent way to undercut the competition. These devices look to give Apple a run for the money. This is going to be great 🙂 Competition forces innovation.

  2. I’d say the likes of Google, Samsung, Microsoft, Asus, etc. are more concerned about Amazon than Apple is. Although Apple clearly competes with Amazon in a certain segment of the market (mainly content distribution), I think they have a complementary and symbiotic relationship in that they share many of the same customers – such as myself and the family.

    Amazon is carving out a niche (albeit a big one) for itself as it has a business model that’s very unlike that of the aforementioned tech companies including Apple. It’d be amusing to sit in on a Samsung or Microsoft meeting about this Amazon announcement. They keep seeing the entry into the tablet market getting smaller and smaller. The thing is, they’ll have to beat Amazon first before challenging Apple and I just don’t see how they could do it.

    After Apple’s ecosystem, the one that I frequent the most is definitely Amazon. For the family members that order everything from cooking wares to toys for the kids, Amazon means even more. I have an old Kindle that I still use frequently – especially for reading outdoors. I use the Kindle app frequently on the iPad as well although I’m about 50/50 between that and iBooks.

    I’m an Amazon Prime member and I think Amazon offers a great value-filled ecosystem that no one else can match. For me, Amazon is very complementary to all the things that Apple offers. It sure beats having to rely on Google or Microsoft for anything and I’m glad that Amazon is keeping them at bay.

    Apple could still dominate the tablet market while Amazon plays a secondary role of keeping virtually everyone else out. That being said, Amazon really needs to figure out on how to further expand in the international markets. That’s their key weakness. Apple could continue holding onto the great majority of the market share while Amazon serves a strong niche market while throttling the likes of Google, Samsung and Microsoft.

    I don’t think Apple needs to match Amazon down to the dollar and every spec. They offer two different types of ecosystems. I’m sure Apple is observing Amazon very carefully, but Amazon can be more of an ally than a foe when they both consider Google a bigger and more important enemy to fight.

  3. Amazon’s tablet lineup is impressive no matter how you look at it. Hope the reviews are positive. Well done Amazon!

    Samsung, HP, Dell and all the other hardware makers are doomed. Microsoft is in trouble, unless they get more contents lined up (books, textbooks). Google is also in trouble, Amazon is only using the open source Android if I’m not mistaken, and not touching any of Google’s eco system.

    Apple will be fine, but they need to step to the plate quickly with some really exciting hardware, pricing, contents and service. This is what competition is about! Not the Samsung copy at all cost mentality.

    Exciting times.

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