Great Debate: Kindle Fire or iPad: Which one should you buy?

Moderated by Lawrence Dignan | November 28, 2011 -- 07:00 GMT (23:00 PST)

Summary: Tablets from Apple and Amazon are competing for our attention this holiday season and beyond.

Violet Blue

Violet Blue

Kindle Fire

or

iPad

Jason Hiner

Jason Hiner

Best Argument: Kindle Fire

The moderator has delivered a final verdict.

Opening Statements

Fire's a tablet for everyone

Violet Blue: The Kindle Fire exceeded everyone’s expectations, making converts out of iPad fans. The Fire is a tablet for everyone; its form factor makes the iPad seem like a dinner plate in comparison –- and you can get two Kindle Fires for the price of one iPad.

Plus, Prime customers can watch streaming movies and TV shows for free, the app marketplace isn’t censored the way that Apple’s is, and it’s also terrific for kids.

The Fire is more durable than the iPad; it easily survives being dropped off a kitchen counter and can’t be scratched with keys.

People will want a Fire in addition to their iPad, and that won’t be true in reverse.

It’s well worth the price. The Fire is a Kindle with benefits. Amazon’s App store is also far more friendly to developers than Apple’s, so the Fire is only going to get more exciting from here on out.

iPad remains best choice for many

Jason Hiner: The iPad has run roughshod over the tablet market for the past two years, despite a steady stream of challengers trying to knock it off its perch. Enter the Amazon Kindle Fire, the first real competitor that is causing anyone at Apple to break a sweat. Amazon is going to sell a lot of Kindle Fire tablets, without a doubt. It won't sell as many as Apple but the Kindle Fire's $200 price tag and solid design will be enough to nab a lot of buyers.

Still, the Kindle Fire is not the tablet for technologists or business professionals. It is the tablet for your grandma, Uncle Ted, or your 12 year old. It's good at two things -- consuming content from Amazon (books, videos, and music) and purchasing products from Amazon. The Kindle Fire does not and will not have the extended ecosystem of the iPad and the Fire's 7-inch screen -- as opposed to the 10-inch iPad -- makes it less of a laptop replacement.
 

Talkback

422 comments
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  • RE: Great Debate: Kindle Fire or iPad: Which one should you buy?

    Kindle Fire I can use without PC, iPad need iTurn
    xu2z
    Reply Vote I'm for Kindle Fire
    • RE: Great Debate: Kindle Fire or iPad: Which one should you buy?

      @xu2z You don't need iTunes anymore with IOS5 its all done over the air. I have both the Fire and iPad...very different with some overlap. Thinking Fire 2.0 could be a real contender. If $'s an issue Fire is a no brainer.
      schuelerd
      Reply Vote I'm Undecided
    • No PC needed...

      @xu2z iOS5 removed the need for a PC. All you need is a free iCloud account and your iPad will be backed up to the cloud and activated there too.
      rfnajera
      Reply Vote I'm for iPad
      • RE: Great Debate: Kindle Fire or iPad: Which one should you buy?

        @rfnajera
        iCloud is not free (you have mixed Apple with Google, Google is the one offering free services...)
        AdnanPirota
        Reply Vote I'm for Kindle Fire
      • RE: Great Debate: Kindle Fire or iPad: Which one should you buy?

        @rfnajera if you buy an iPad today and take it home, charge it up and switch it on you will be confronted with an iTunes logo and a picture of a USB plug. It has to be plugged to iTunes. Probably 'cos it didn't ship with iOS5. So your utopia is not yet here, and frankly I wouldn't be surprised if this situation prevails when iOS5 is pre-installed. 230 MByte download anyone ?
        phil@...
        Reply Vote I'm for Kindle Fire
      • RE: Great Debate: Kindle Fire or iPad: Which one should you buy?

        @AdnanPirota,

        iCloud is indeed free. You are the one that is confused. There is no cost in signing up for an iCloud account. A 5 GB of iCloud storage is included with all accounts. The 5GB storage does not include any content that is purchased through Apple's iTune store. It only cost you money if you want more than 5GB of online storage. All of its syncing services are free.
        makelvin
        Reply Vote I'm Undecided
      • RE: Great Debate: Kindle Fire or iPad: Which one should you buy?

        @makelvin So it's just the rest of the iOS proprietary walled-in ecosystem that routes the Dyson to your wallet. got it.
        At least as long as you have less than 5 gig. Then you still have no choice for cloud service - like it or leave it.
        Ah, America. Our founding fathers would roll in their graves if they saw this kind of "I don't want any choices, or rights, I'll take what you give me, and be oh-so-content.". Land of the free, home of the... no, we won't go there.
        Sigh.

        Enjoy your contentment, for all that it costs you. Justify away.
        geolemon
        Reply Vote I'm for Kindle Fire
      • Amazon's ecosystem is closed, too

        @geolemon: so it is strange that you make an argument of it in favour of Kindle Fire.

        And, despite being "closed", Apple has the biggest media library among any content provider, and both Kindle and Nook media libraries (except for limited exclusives) available for iPad.
        dderss
        Reply Vote I'm for iPad
      • RE: Great Debate: Kindle Fire or iPad: Which one should you buy?

        @adnanpirota Where did you get the idea that it's not free? iCloud is indeed FREE (5GB)!
        Yuniverse
        Reply Vote I'm for iPad
      • RE: Great Debate: Kindle Fire or iPad: Which one should you buy?

        @rfnajera Indeed, you are correct and @AdnanPirota is blowing smoke. iCloud IS free.
        plawler
        Reply Vote I'm for iPad