We've been talking about the Amazon Kindle Tablet for what feels like forever, but now that someone has had a hands-on with this device, the reality of just how toxic this could be to other Android tablets is sinking in.
7-inch full-color screen, no eInk (10-inch coming in 2012)
Two-finger multitouch support
Runs a version of Android that's older than 2.2 but it's been heavily customized
UI looks and feels like Amazon's iOS Kindle app
6GB of storage
The killer - $250
A few things stand out here. First is the price. $250 is a little bit higher than some people were expecting ($199 was touted as the sweet spot). $250 will wipe the floor with tablets from other makers. Seriously. Amazon has huge market reach and this will have a huge effect on other tablets ... even possibly the iPad.
Another interesting point is that Amazon has decided to go it alone with a pre-2.2 version of Android, which means that Google will have to come to terms with a major fork in the Android code. The fact that Amazon didn't go with 'Honeycomb' or 'Ice Cream Sandwich' (and that the Kindle Tablet will never get either of these) will be a major blow to both Google and OEMs who have been putting a lot of effort (and faith) in these releases.
Amazon also has no shortage of content, both free and paid for, on offer for tablet users. Aside from ebooks, Amazon has a music service, a video service, an Android app store, a games and software downloads service, cloud services and audiobooks (Amazon owns Audible.com). Integrating these services into a single device would make a Kindle tablet compelling for hardcore Amazon users … and in my experience there are a LOT of hardcore Amazon users out there.