- Great display for videos, games, apps and books
- Notable Amazon’s content
- Great Price
What we don’t like
- No charger
- Missing some important apps
- Need to pay for ads free version
Kindle Fire HD 8.9” tablet is really getting a lot of love from its users. And it deserves the love. It arguably gives more value for your money than any other tablets on the market, plus it’s a great device. “We made the best tablet at any price,” said Jeff Bezos, CEO and founder of Amazon. Maybe not for every Kindle Fire variants but this particular tablet is surely a winner. Let’s find out the details with our Kindle Fire HD 8.9” 4G LTE Wireless review.
The Reason Why Kindle Fire HD 8.9 4G LTE Wireless Shines
Apple reinvigorated the tablet computer market in 2010 with the introduction of iPad. It’s a device that breaks it own record of groundbreaking innovations every year, leaving its competitors way behind. Usually, there is no problem saying iPad is overall the best tablet if you have the cash. But with this Kindle Fire HD 8.9, you seriously want to know where you are spending your money.
Kindle Fire HD 8.9” 4G LTE Wireless review from various sources would confirm that it’s one of the best tablet and shares parallel hardware configurations and technology with the top players. In fact, there are some significant advantages of Kindle 8.9”over other top rated tablets.
The Spectacular 8.9” HD Display and Dolby Sound
Apple’s iPad has a better resolution of 2,048 × 1,536 pixel resolution at 264 ppi as against 1920×1200 at 254 ppi of Kindle 8.9”. In fact, technically, the display resolution is better with other tablets like Asus Transformer Pad, Google Nexus, Archos 97 Titanium HD and others. But in reality it’s so hard to make out the difference even when you do a side by side comparison. It’s a mere 10 fewer ppi (pixels per inch) than Retina Display of iPad 4. Moreover, it’s not the only factor that influences the quality of display.
Kindle 8.9” uses IPS LCD capacitive touch-screen with 16 million colors just like the latest iPad with Retina display (iPad 4) and the other tablets. This IPS (In-plane switching) technology is great to view from any angle with the same deep contrast and rich color.
The loudspeaker of Fire HD 8.9” is awesome with stereo speakers on both sides of the device. It’s hard to find tablets with such high quality sound. It’s not just loud but very clear and crisp. This is mainly the work of Dolby Digital Plus technology incorporated with Kindle 8.9”.
Light Weighted, Slim and Portable – Great Going So Far
It is slightly thinner and slimmer than iPad 4. The new iPad has a slightly larger screen size (9.7”) but the difference is negligible. Kindle 8.9” weighs 567 g while iPad weighs 652 g (Wi-Fi only) and 662 g for 3G+Wi-Fi, which can make a difference while holding long form.
The new Kindle tablet is beautiful and sturdy. I like the soft touch feel while holding it. The table is sleek and sexy but it’s hard to find the power and volume buttons, especially the power button.
Features, Software and Performance – How Things Actually Works
It runs on higher processor Dual-core 1.5 GHz TI OMAP4 4470 as compared to 1.4 GHz dual-core Apple A6X SoC of iPad 4 while it runs on equivalent Graphics Processing Unit (PowerVR SGX544) and RAM of 1GB. For web, Kindle Fire HD offers Amazon Silk (HTML 5), a cloud accelerated browser. It also includes gyroscope and Ambient light sensors, and messaging service like Email, Push Email and IM.
It works on Android OS (v4.0) but it’s a customized OS to serve more of Amazon’s content. It’s not as user friendly as the standard Android OS that we found on Google Nexus or other Android OS based tablets.
Basically, you’d be impressed if you like Amazon and grumble if you don’t like Amazon. What I mean is that Kindle HD is more a device to access Amazon content. You’d love Kindle Fire HD if you like shopping from Amazon for video, audio, e-book or buy physical products because they offer better price.
Well, Amazon is actually a great pace for shopping and I think Amazon Prime is an excellent service. Apart from the ‘Free 2 day shipping’ for millions of items you can borrow one book (any title) a month from the Kindle Owner’s Lending Library feature. Moreover, Amazon Prime members can watch unlimited, commercial-free streaming of over 35,000 popular movies and TV episodes for free. Amazon content is impressive, and one can access over 23 million movies, TV shows, songs, magazines, books, and audio-books from the Kindle device.
The default home screen is a carousel of your recently used content and apps. This can be annoying. To customize it you need to fill up your favourite section with your most used apps.
The X-Ray feature is a nice thing to have. Just tap and you’ll have information about actors and characters for movies and TV, tap on books to find details about characters, places, ideas or to access info from Shelfari and Wikipedia.
Amazon apps store is good but far from being like the App store of Apple. Amazon still lacks some important apps though you will find the most popular ones. For apps, Amazon ecosystem is weak compared to Google too. However, for movies and books Amazon is way ahead of its competitors.
Camera and Battery
There is no rear camera with Kindle Fire HD except for the 1.3MP (720p) front camera. You won’t miss the rear camera so much as anyone hardly uses a tablet to take pictures or videos. The front camera is good one for a video chat with any app.
The battery life is good and it should give around 7 – 8 hours of continuous use for usual activities that includes web browsing, messaging, some video streaming and listening to music. If you decrease the brightness the uptime may stay for over 10 hours as Amazon claimed.
Why is Amazon Selling Kindle Fire HD 8.9” Cheap?
Amazon is not an electronics manufacturer, but its Kindle devices are outstanding and overwhelmingly popular in the market. This is because they are not just great devices but cheap too. “Basically, we sell the hardware at our cost, so it’s break-even on hardware,” said Jeff Bezos in an interview with BBC.
Sales of Kindle devices doesn’t render any direct profit to the company, rather they hope to make profits selling content. Amazon is primarily a content company and a retailer. And perhaps this is why they can cut so much on the price.
Should You Buy Kindle Fire HD 8.9”?
Clearly, Kindle Fire HD is not a device to replace your laptop or an alternative to iPad for those who love apps. In fact, iPad is overall a better tablet any day. However, Kindle Fire HD is the best device to access Amazon content for an unbeatable price. And if you prefer you can buy most of the content for your device from Amazon with over 1.2 million books, 400 magazines, 20 million songs, 15000 audio titles, 150,000 movies and TV shows.
Kindle Fire HD 8.9” cost (16GB WI-Fi + Cellular) less than iPad 4. It’s even (16GB WI-Fi only) less than iPad mini though it has much bigger display and almost double resolution. If you think Amazon content has most of what you are looking for, then this is the best value tablet on the market.
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|Kindle Fire HD 8.9" 4G LTE Wireless, Dolby Audio, Dual-Band Wi-Fi|
|Kindle Fire HD 8.9", Dolby Audio, Dual-Band Wi-Fi|