Amazon readies press conference: Kindle Fire 2 time?

Amazon readies press conference: Kindle Fire 2 time?

Summary: Amazon plans a press conference for Sept. 6. Could this be a new entry to the 7-inch---or 10-inch---tablet race.

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TOPICS: Tablets, Amazon, Mobility
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Amazon will hold a press conference Sept. 6 in Santa Monica. Could this be the next Kindle?

Probably. Amazon doesn't do many press powwows. When it does Amazon usually has a new Kindle to plug. Historically, Amazon launches new Kindles in the August-September time frame.

The biggest unknown is whether it'll be another 7-inch Kindle Fire tablet or 10-inch. Maybe both. 

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Topics: Tablets, Amazon, Mobility

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  • Specialized

    Amazon could get into the business of private-labeling stuff any time they want. They could have Amazon televisions, Amazon computers, heck they could have Amazon-branded aspirin just like every grocery store and drug store chain has.

    But they don't do that. So they must be viewing this tablet exercise as less of an attempt to compete in the general-purpose 'tablet' space than a way to bring their closest customers closer, and to sell them more stuff.

    So while I'm sure they will have taken advantage of advances in the components that are out there a year later, I doubt we'll see anything that looks like an attempt to compete with the Nexus 7 or the iPad. I think it's more likely to be a better e-reader than either of those, but a little less feature-laden in other areas. Perhaps it will use Qualcomm's Mirasol display technology... or some other way to get e-ink readability in sunlight and still allow full-motion video.
    Robert Hahn
    • That would be what I'm looking for

      I was going to get a Kindle Touch, but they've discontinued the one without special offers. I would like an eInk reader around the 7"+ size with multi-touch capabilities
      grayknight
      • Kindle Touch special offers

        Gray, you are able to get a special offers version of any Kindle and then pay the difference to cancel the ads. However with models being discontinued and an Amazon press conferense in the start of September, it may be best to wait as new ones may be coming out soon! Maybe it will have the Triton color eInk. Maybe it will be front lit... many questions (assuming a new one is even coming).

        If you don't wait, as stated the special offers can be taken off the Kindle. Also another option is the Nook Simple Touch with Glowlight. Personally I actually think that is better hardware wise than the Kindle touch as it has a light and physical page turn buttons (which I like). However it lacks the online lending library (you have to go to a Barnes and Noble to borrow a book or one from a friend), does not have as accurate multi-device synching, and is not linked to Amazon. Of course then there is the fact BOTH eInk readers are only 6" screens. ;)

        Hope that helps, and good luck!
        Shawn Harnden
    • Free Web Access?

      I think we could see a tablet with components in line with those of the Nexus 7. After a year those component costs must have come down quite a bit.

      However, I'm still waiting for them to announce something really new/different. For example, what if they included free internet access (say 200mb/month) with the purchase of the new Kindle Fire. That could be something that would give them a huge leg up on their competitors. It wouldn't be enough to watch videos, but it would be enough to download books, magazines, order products, and generally buy more stuff from Amazon.

      This kind of differentiation could be the thing that will force consumers to overlook the hideous interface and the similar (if not inferior) hardware specs.
      msftds
      • Perhaps but...

        component prices don't actually change by that much in that short a space of time, at least not most of the major ones. Now what does happen is if a new product is released, it might replace and old one for the same amount of money and the old products get scrapped.

        This obviously means that the price point remains similar, but you end up with a little more for your money, but one year isn't a huge amount of time in terms of a lot of the hardware so a change will most likely be quite incremental.

        Amazon would be wise to make a new product with the slightly newer tech, but a very good reason for a release of the K fire mark two would be for it to be accompanied with a world wide release, rather then it only being available in the US. I mean until the amazon tablet is available world wide then it isn't really direct competition for the Nexus7.
        5th element
    • Amazon does private label lots of stuff

      The brand is Amazon Basic. These are usually good quality items with few 'frills'. Sometimes it is all you need, other times you will be willing to pay more to get a better feature set or higher quality. Your choice.
      Jim Johnson
  • @ Robert Hahn

    It is probably about either the new 10" Kindle Fire which makes sense since Apple wants to release a 7" iPad which is Kindle Fire territory or about the new Kindle Phone. Either way Apple, Google, Samsung and Microsoft are in trouble. Especially Apple and Samsung.
    calahan
    • Huh?

      "Either way Apple, Google, Samsung and Microsoft are in trouble. Especially Apple and Samsung"

      How did you come to this conclusion? If Apple does introduce a smaller tablet in the coming weeks, that will suck all the remaining air out from the competition.
      dave95.
      • Nope

        Apple likes their margins from hardware. If Apple does mfr a 7-inch tablet, it will be more of a premium tablet (similar to Samsung's Galaxy Tab 7.*). They will happily let Amazon, Google and Barnes & Noble duke it out at the lower end of 7-inch form-factor tablets.
        Rabid Howler Monkey
        • @ dave, @ Rabid Howler Monkey

          The magic phase is over.

          Are you really telling me that a 7" iPad is new in terms of software or hardware featureset?

          It is not in any manner. It is just like their other mini-iPod or nanoPod devices. It *has* to sell for less. They do not have a choice but to price it proportionally much lower than their iPad cousin device. The average cost of a mini-iPad further has to meet that of Kindle Fire 2 or 3 or even Google Nexus 7 - 1 or Nexus 7 - 2 which will arrive in the next 6 months or more to meet the opportunity cost of choosing one of the other devices. And this average cost is in the $190-$200 range for Amazon and Google too. Excluding Microsoft which does not talk about mini-Surface yet. Or even Samsung.

          The BOM cost for mini iPad cannot exceed $150 for Apple with their supplychain optimizations compared to Amazon, Microsoft or Google. Each of these other three will barely breakeven when they sell a similar 7" device due to lack of supplychain cost control and lack of negotiation advantages at this moment. But not Apple.

          So a $150 BOM mini iPad device can really sell well and profitably at $199. And if it can, it does mean two things - they will cannibalize their own bigger iPad device sale and that they will make lesser margin on each sale.

          Sure. They will have the same marketshare growth rate in terms of additional units shipped like in the most recent quarter but no, they will not make the same total profit any more per quarter from the Pad business since the average cost and average profit are both lesser.

          I will br proven right when numbers come out for Q4 calendar year 2012. Let us talk about it in Jan 2013.
          calahan
          • You said ...

            ... "It is not in any manner. It is just like their other mini-iPod or nanoPod devices. It *has* to sell for less. They do not have a choice but to price it proportionally much lower than their iPad cousin device."

            And this is exactly WHY Apple will not introduce a 7" tablet. Costs of these devices are NOT proportionally smaller and Apple cannot afford to cut it's profit margins.

            If they DO introduce an iPad mini, it will be at $399. IMO, such a move would be a disaster. Chasing Android down to $199 is just plain dumb with Microsoft at your heals at $499 and up!
            M Wagner
      • Depends on the price-point.

        Amazon has staked out the $199 price-point and the rest of the Android guys are racing to the bottom. I believe that Microsoft and Apple are perfectly content to let Android have that $199 to $299 Window. Apple is not likely to go below $399 for an iPad mini (if one really exists, which I doubt). (This would mean the demise of the iPad 2, which seems ill-advised to me.
        M Wagner
    • Amazon needs a 10-inch tablet independent of a possible Apple 7-inch iPad

      Why? eTextbooks and the education market and large-format magazines, cookbooks, etc. in the consumer market.
      Rabid Howler Monkey
      • @ Rabid Howler Monkey

        Agreed. The need for 10" is inspite of the 7" mini iPad but has the iBookstore even kicked off yet in terms of revenue growth? The Justice department is after Apple and its publisher ecosystem and not after Amazon's. So I do not see a need for Amazon to panic yet. It will be another two years before Justice department settles everything down for Apple. By then, Amazon will surely lead the ebook publishing market with all of its existing but improved deals with publishing houses which all will surely occur. So the motive and need exists for Amazon to stay on its existing Kindle Fire marketshare and mindshare and start to tickle Apple where its 2nd growth strategy exists (after iPhone which is the first).
        calahan
      • Apple isn't the only game in town by a LONG shot

        Not to mention that there are a number of us who have both the iPad and an a Android device (I have 3 of those) and PREFER the Androids over the iPad stuff. I had an Apple I and an Apple II and that was about as much Apple as I needed. I prefer the open and easy access to software and additional hardware that Apple will just never allow. That's the main reason the PC over took the Apple II. Developers. MS was friendly to them, Apple was not. Same story now. Sure, there is a FIXED percentage of the market that likes and wants Apple products, but there is a much larger (80%?) that does not and those numbers are not going to change any time soon.

        If I were a HW manufacturer, Apple wouldn't worry me at all. Not when I have 80% of the market not married to my "competition".
        ccs9623
      • I agree with this but Android buys are too price-conscious

        They will not accept a more expensive device even with a larger screen. Android has driven itself into a $199 to $299 price range and that's it!
        M Wagner
    • In Touble? According to whom?

      Apple has 68% of the tablet market and has never acknowledged that they are working on an iPad mini.

      Depending upon who you talk to, Amazon or Samsung is #2

      More likely than not, Samsung is making the "Surface RT" tablet for Microsoft.

      The "Surface RT" is being positioned as an "iPad Killer".

      This is a battle for market dominance between Apple and Microsoft.

      In this race, Android is the "also ran" candidate.
      M Wagner
  • Too Many Cooks = Spoiled Soup

    Android, Apple, MS, Amazon, B&N...
    The tablet market MUST settle out, soon, or it will implode.
    Amazon and Barnes & Noble have decreed that their formats (and the other manufacturers that support one or the other), along with Adobe's device-independent PDF, ARE the eBook future. Apple and MS are going to have to bow to those two and adopt one or the other, or fall by the wayside. Microsoft's .lit format is going to find itself niche'd out of existence (anyone besides me and my kid sister still remember the NuvoMedia Rocket?) because it loses support and share. Android, MS, Apple, and just about every other OS have a Kindle Reader application available (FREE) and I think the same holds for the Nook reader. If not, Calibre will convert Nook books to just about any of the other formats. And vice versa. But somehow, I don't see B&N being stupid, so I'm comfortable that they have a Nook reader app for all the biggies, too.
    Apple's iPublisher is going to fall off the face of the desktop - and the tablet; unlike a LOT of their software and hardware (which is good, no argument) it just is coming in too late, too restrictive - and too expensive. And too unsupported by anyone.
    Give it up, Apple. Move on to something else that will work.
    MadYank
  • Kindle Fire 2

    Amazon Fire Dept. has already notified its customers that there are going to be 4 new models to choose from . 3 of them 7 inch, 1 8.9 in. no prices & limited info.
    1- 7" no camera
    1- 7' w/ camera
    1-7' w/camera and 4G
    1-8.9' w/o camera or 4G BUT with HIGH RES. screen. .. so not an IF.. They even have a new sweepstakes running. . no word on operating system, mic, or card slot. or prices.
    sleasum