The new Kindle Fire HD tablets from Amazon have good hardware and software technology inside that belies the low pricing. It turns out that pricing is low due to the inclusion of ads on the Fire HD lock screen and home screen.
These ads will be on all Kindle Fire HD models according to Amazon, without the ability to opt-out. Ads on Kindles are nothing new as Amazon has offered models of the ereader with ads at a lower price for some time.
Kindle buyers have the option to pay a little more for models sans ads or go cheap and put up with the ads. To be fair the Kindle ads have never been obtrusive.
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The ads on the new Kindle Fire HD tablets will be on the lock screen that is displayed every time you turn the device on. These ads will include "sponsored screen savers" according to Amazon. The lock screen disappears as soon as you unlock the display so this may not be an issue with most users.
The other ads will be on the lower left corner of the home screen. Amazon insists they will not interfere with the normal use of the tablet, but that will be up to each user. It cannot be turned off so it's there to stay.
Amazon took this ad-supported route no doubt to keep the prices of the Kindle Fire HD as low as possible so it may be an acceptable trade-off for most. At least that's the case in the US, as the info screen above details.
It turns out the ads will only "be available in the US". Folks outside the US won't get the ads which is a plus to most folks. Unless it causes the Kindle Fire HD to be priced higher than it would be with ads, in which case buyers will paying for lack of the feature.
Update: Amazon has confirmed to CNET UK that Kindle Fire HD tablets in the UK will also enjoy the ads.
Update 2: Amazon is now stating that no-ad options will be available for the Kindle Fire HD for $15.