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Amazon Kindle Fire HDX Breaks Tablet Ground

Third-generation Kindle sports a Mayday button, to call for tech support.

Three storage configurations -- 16 GB, 32 GB and 64 GB -- are available. Support for 4G LTE wireless networks is also an option. The 7-inch model is available with or without a front-facing HD camera. The 8.9-inch model comes with a front-facing HD camera and with or without a rear-facing 8MP camera.

Amazon claims the Kindle Fire HDX's battery lasts for up to 11 hours of mixed use or 17 hours of reading. It notes that the 8.9-inch model weighs 13.2 ounces, making it 34% lighter than its predecessor. The email and calendar apps have been revised, as has Amazon's Silk browser. The device has also been made more business friendly with support for hardware- and software-based encryption, Kerberos Intranet, secure Wi-Fi connections, VPN integration and wireless printing.

Prices range from $139 to $579, depending on options.

The Kindle Fire HDX runs on a version of Android that Amazon has taken to calling Fire OS 3.0, although there doesn't appear to have ever been a public Fire OS release from Amazon designated 1.0 or 2.0. The operating system even has its own codename, "Mojito," not to be confused with Yahoo's JavaScript framework called "Mojito."

Amazon Kindle VP Dave Limp says what makes Fire OS different as a platform is its focus on making customers' recently viewed content and media libraries immediately accessible on the home screen and its integration of Amazon services such as the Mayday button, Second Screen and X-Ray for Movies, TV and Music. Nonetheless, it's not too different: Mike George, VP of Amazon's Appstore insists developers can adapt their Android apps to Fire OS "with little to no work."

Even so, comparatively few developers have undertaken the ostensibly minor chore of making their Android apps available on the Amazon Appstore: Google Play has about 600,000 apps compared to over 100,000 in the Amazon Appstore. Yet, in revenue, Amazon's Appstore is far closer to Google Play than can be measured in app counts. Metrics firm Distimo said in April that the top 200 paid apps in Google Play during the month of March earned $5.1 million, compared to $3 million for the top 200 paid apps in the Amazon Appstore.

Amazon is now accepting orders for its new devices. The 7-inch Kindle Fire HDX is scheduled to ship Nov. 14. The 8.9-inch model will ship Dec. 10.

9/26: Corrected Appstore figures

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User Rank: Apprentice
9/27/2013 | 12:38:16 PM
re: Amazon Kindle Fire HDX Breaks Tablet Ground
Yeah, the idea is intriguing, but 15 seconds during peak times?! C'mon, that's just not realistic.
User Rank: Apprentice
9/26/2013 | 8:08:11 PM
re: Amazon Kindle Fire HDX Breaks Tablet Ground
If they had the HDX six weeks ago, I would have purchased it. Instead I purchased a Google Nexus 7 and I have been quite happy with it. It is good to see them upping their game a bit.
Thomas Claburn
Thomas Claburn,
User Rank: Author
9/26/2013 | 7:26:49 PM
re: Amazon Kindle Fire HDX Breaks Tablet Ground
I'll be interested to see if Amazon can dispense help efficiently at scale. I suspect response times may get longer than 15 seconds over the holidays.
User Rank: Apprentice
9/26/2013 | 7:03:11 PM
re: Amazon Kindle Fire HDX Breaks Tablet Ground
My mom would like the Mayday button. And by "my mom" I mean me.
User Rank: Apprentice
9/25/2013 | 10:18:03 PM
re: Amazon Kindle Fire HDX Breaks Tablet Ground
Another Android tablet also launching this week with some great features is the new Ramos i-8($199) -- which is the worldGăÍs thinnest 8-inch tablet -- offering a 7.9-inch HD-screen and aluminum-nickel frame for a sleek design... and similar in size to the mini iPad and easy to carry... almost as compact as a 7" tablet, such as the new Kindle Fire, but with 40% more screen space -- which makes a significant difference in viewing tablet content (a key reason the iPad mini is 8")-- the new Ramos i-8 also matches most features of the Nexus 7 G㢠plus MicroSD storage...

This new Android model also offers one of IntelGăÍs newest processors with solid performance for a mid-range device. Ramos Technology has partnered with Intel to introduce the i-Series with 8", 9", 10" and 12" models ($199-$299) -- and all feature HD displays along with a processor with Hyper-Threading technology, which runs four threads simultaneously and outscores many mainstream quad-core tablets in benchmark testing --

More details at--T ab l e t Sp r i n t-
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