Amazon is looking to spread its ereader wings even further, promising to launch tablet-centric versions of its Kindle app for Android and Windows based slates in 2011. The announcement follows the release of the Kindle for iPad app in 2010, which tailored the ereader software's UI to suit the larger display of the Apple tablet.
Amazon has quietly announced that ex-Palm CEO and current HP SVP Jon Rubinstein has joined as a director. The news, part of a security and exchange commission filing, does not suggest that Rubinstein's role as director will include, but it's possible that he could assist in Amazon's development of a Kindle-brand tablet to better compete with the iPad and Barnes & Noble NOOKcolor.
Speculation regarding an Amazon tablet has been circulating for some time, though the company has resolutely stuck to the party line that it is focused on its Kindle range of dedicated ebook readers. Nonetheless, the Kindles have become more functional as the line has matured; Amazon now offers third-party applications, and the most recent Kindle has a WebKit based browser like the latest smartphones.
Amazon is tipped to be preparing its own Android marketplace, challenging the official Android Market with their own developer offering and hoping to lure in coders with the possibility of being features on the retailer's well-trafficked site. Meanwhile there's also talk of an Amazon tablet, produced alongside rather than replacing the Kindle, and itself running Android.
Research In Motion has officially unveiled the brand new PlayBook, the company's first tablet device, and they're pulling out all the stops. For fans of the BlackBerry lineage, getting the Amazon Kindle application on their device was a good day, and for those already thinking about picking up the tablet device with the BlackBerry logo on there, you'll be happy to know that Amazon is planning on releasing the Kindle application for the tablet device.
Remember that eLocity A7 Android tablet I talked about last month that we were supposed to get more details on shortly after it was announced? The tablet is now officially available for pre-order an Amazon with all the hardware details in tow.
Elonex's 7-inch ereader tablet, the 710EB, has shown up for preorder on Amazon UK. Based around a 7-inch LCD TFT display, rather than the more common E Ink panel, the Elonex 710EB is still a mysterious beast in terms of specs; we know it's ARM based, has a quoted 8hr battery life and wireless connectivity, but beyond that Elonex are tight-lipped.
After beginning to ship out on Friday, Amazon have frozen deliveries of the Archos 5 160GB Android Internet Tablet. According to the product listing, the touchscreen device is "under review", which Amazon explain could mean anything from shipping errors (wrong device, missing accessories, etc), incorrect item descriptions or, more worryingly, "something wrong with our inventory of the item", i.e. a problem with the Tablet itself.
Archos' Android Internet Tablet, the Archos 5, has shown up for preorder on Amazon in at least three of its forms. The 32GB flash model, together with the 160GB and 500GB hard-drive versions, are all listed, with prices at $379.99, $329.99 and $429.99 respectively.
A new service has been introduced by Amazon that'll bring on Pandora-like music streaming stations to the masses. This service works on the iOS app Amazon Prime Music app for iOS devices. This service works with an advertisement-free presentation with "unlimited skips" of music tracks. Each user will have personalized recommendations on Prime songs, playlists, and albums. This update for Amazon Prime Music also includes a new design made for easier browsing and exploration of music tracks, all in your Amazon Prime Music library.
Amazon has introduced its new Kindle Textbook Creator, a tool that lets users create digital textbooks and related materials that include educational elements, not the least of which are flashcards. Students will then be able to access this content on the same devices other Kindle content can be accessed on, including their Fire tablets. The tool is currently in a beta stage, and as with the Kindle Direct Publishing platform, those interested are able to directly upload their content for others to enjoy.