Amazon's Kindle Fire HD upcoming specs may validate business model

Amazon's Kindle Fire HD upcoming specs may validate business model

Summary: Amazon has reportedly nailed the high-end specs for its latest Kindle Fire HD devices. Rest assured the company will make money off you elsewhere.

TOPICS: Tablets, Amazon, Mobility

Amazon is reportedly prepping its next batch of Kindle Fire HD tablets and the tech ecosystem is again drooling over specs for the money. The real win for Amazon is that it can offer strong specs at a good price because it'll make plenty of money off you elsewhere.

BGR reports its latest tidbits on Amazon's Kindle Fire HD tablets, which may launch in September. The key takeaways from the report, which could barely contain its glee:

  • The 7-inch Kindle Fire HD tablet will be powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 chip, which is top of the line.
  • Pricing will be roughly in the current ballpark.
  • More RAM and storage options.
  • The 8.9-inch Kindle Fire HD will have a 2,560 x 1,600-pixel high-definition display and front and rear cameras.
Fall is almost here so it must be time to start talking new Kindles.

BGR is betting that Amazon can stand out with its tablets since Google's Nexus 7 is nice, but can't hold your attention for too long. Apple's iPad mini may get an incremental upgrade. And Samsung's tablet line up is a yawner.

Perhaps the biggest takeaway here is that Amazon's business model for tablets may be superior to its rivals. First, Amazon can subsidize the hardware. Then, Amazon turns the Kindle into a shopping kiosk on the go. And Amazon will sell some Prime subscriptions too along with movies and e-books.

The only other company that can play the cloud and services game as well as Amazon is probably Google. Then again, Google isn't up to par on commerce and content selection. Apple has the hardware and content, but has to prove itself on the cloud services front.

In any case, should subsidized hardware win out in the tablet wars---and it's already looking that way---Amazon's army of Kindle Fire devices are going to be in good shape.

Topics: Tablets, Amazon, Mobility

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  • Not according to their financial statements.

    "The real win for Amazon is that it can offer strong specs at a good price because it'll make plenty of money off you elsewhere."

    I think their earnings reports over the past few years would suggest that they won't be making any money off you elsewhere.
    • They make a lot of money off of me

      Like many males I hate shopping. I get about 5 packages per week from Amazon. The selection is better than the stores. Prices are competitive. Ordering is easy. Service is safer and better than most web outlets. The adds are well targeted. I find them useful rather than annoying like random e-mails and phone calls. And the Kindle tablets without question are technically better than almost all others at price that can not be beat.

      Sorry I sound like an Amazon advertisement. Maybe the have acquired my soul.
      • You alone do not a market make, and you alone will not make Amazon

        very successful.

        The person above you made a very salient point, but it flew way above your head.

        Amazon can't make money by just giving stuff away and hoping to make it up with other sales. That doesn't work too well in most cases. Amazon has been in the tablet market for a couple of years with cheap (but good) tablets, but their bottom line doesn't reflect a great success story.
  • Apple, google, and MS all have their 30% app cut and huge profits on

    content rental and purchases to subsidize the hw just like amazon does. When consumers shift more to content obtained that way versus cable we may see really rather large subsidies on the hw just like carriers do on cellphones with yes even free ones.
    Johnny Vegas
  • Nah

    As long as they are using their App store with no access to Google Play, they are fighting a losing battle. I am not giving up my Google purchases so I can use their poorly designed front end on an older revision of Android.

    Side loading the play store isn't all that easy and some apps have extra content they can't reach when side loaded
    • In Amazon's favor ...

      Has Amazon had to implement anything like Google's Bouncer for Google Play in an effort to keep malicious Android apps out of the Amazon App Store? Have they had to implement a kill switch to remove malicious Android apps from their customers devices that somehow found their way into Amazon's App Store? Now that Barnes & Noble has switched it's Nook tablet users over to Google Play, Amazon's App Store is the safest option for Android device users. Plus, you can pay $15 U.S. to Amazon when purchasing your device and not have to deal with advertisements.

      Side-loading Android apps via enabling the installation of apps from unknown sources is what gets the vast majority of Android device users in trouble with malware to begin with. Best to live in the app store that one's device defaults with.

      Finally, most, and I mean most, Android device users aren't tech spec freaks so an older version of Android running on their device goes unnoticed. For tech spec freaks, there's always Android mods (e.g., CyanogenMod) that can be installed on Amazon's Fire HD tablets.
      Rabid Howler Monkey
      • Many people use Android phone anyway

        Your point is therefore invalid. If people don't think this "malicious Android apps" is a problem on their Android phone, why should they think this is a problem on tablet?
      • No Sale

        Even though I use Amazon for a lot, I will not use Fire.
        Better some freedom than looking through the bars of a cage.
        Then again, I have my tablet(s) to use a number of services, not just Amazon.
      • Wow really?

        That's your take on this? I've used Android for the past 4 years and have never gotten a piece of malware for the system. So, I Will take the superior Play Store over your poor logic that you need to be protected from yourself and the boogeyman!
  • Play Store

    I seriously doubt that Amazon gives a hoot about the play store. Am sure that was thrown in to appease the masses.

    The Kindle is a direct link to the Amazon store. Books, appliances, tools, clothes, you name it they sell it and it can all be ordered from the Kindle.
    • And

      From every other phone / tablet / computer / SmartTV I own.
      Actually, I lose very little using another device when it comes to Amazon but I gain more by doing so.
      • Make that

        you gain nothing....
    • Yes but...

      As a consumer, we do care about the play store so, they had better start our their market cap will come fast. Their tablets are already just average overall.
    • Direct Link?

      "The Kindle is a direct link to the Amazon store. Books, appliances, tools, clothes, you name it they sell it and it can all be ordered from the Kindle."

      The Kindle and Amazon apps installed on my Nexus7 are also a direct link to The big "A"...But they are not in my face every moment my tablet is on.
  • Nook HD+

    I bought a Nook HD+ 9" and loaded full Jelly Bean. Awesome. Even works with Amazon Prime - had to side load Flash and use Firefox, but no big deal.
  • I suggest that Amazon will make the most money...

    not from the design of the device, but rather from shoppers who are either lazy, careless or have too much disposable income (or all of the above). While I do patronize Amazon, I must admit I do NOT do so with my Kindle - all purchases are carefully considered (after all, we are on a small, fixed income) and done with a PC. We steadfastly refuse to be duped into touching a "buy" button on a Kindle.
    As usual, it appears that lots of shoppers opt for convenience over other principles, and there are a number of (somewhat shady) merchants very willing to take advantage of that.
  • Software needs improvement more than hardware

    I have a 7 inch fire HD. I like the hardware, especially the micro HDMI port. The killer app for Amazon in the free content if you have prime and the fact that you can output to your TV. The limitation on Amazon is the mediocre software and lack of access to all apps in the Google play store. I hate the carousel. It looks pretty but I won't let anyone look at my tablet because it broadcast what you have been looking at as soon as you turn it on. The web browser is mediocre at best. It is still a hell of a deal for under $200. I have probably gotten $100 in free media from prime so this thing is a good value. I have spent an extra $40 on a case and $30 on extra power cords. I will look at the new Mini and Nexus as I like having a tablet, but I want one with 4G LTE. I would consider a new Kindle if they fix the software.
    KLS 12.5
  • Skeptical

    ZD Net's editorial (IMHO) policies do not make for a reliable source of information. Go ahead, prove me wrong. Not from Missouri, but 'Show Me'.
    Leo Regulus