Those of you using the Kindle that Amazon is now calling the "Kindle Keyboard," aka the Kindle 3, will be glad to hear that today there's a software update out there that gives you access to Kindle Cloud for your personal documents. This is the same cloud that the Kindle 4 has access to, the one that, as always, you've access to every ebook you've ever purchased from Amazon, complete with all the notes and highlights you've left in them. Now you get your archived personal documents too!
As soon as the Kindle Fire was unveiled, I think we all knew this tablet would be popular thanks to the low price. With that low price, we can also bet that the things will be hard to get with tablets being sold out shortly after launch. Analyst Ashok Kumar is now stating that Amazon may move more tablets than previously thought.
The fine folks at Bookeen have revealed that they'll be releasing an ebook reader with a 6-inch Pearl E-ink display and a lovely 800MHz Cortex A8 CPU for the masses. This device will be Bookeen's fourth ereader device, and it's expected that the display will be the same as what's proven to be ultra-successful on the Sony Reader, Amazon Kindle, Barnes & Noble Nook, and the Kobo, that being the Neonode zForce touchscreen. Welcome back to the pack, Bookeen!
Amazon has launched a French-language version of its Kindle ereader, along with a French Kindle Store to accompany it, the first time the retailer has offered a dedicated language option for the country. Priced at €99 ($133), it's the basic entry-level E Ink Kindle (complete with WiFi but no 3G or touchscreen option) Amazon launched in the US and elsewhere earlier this month.
When the cheaper Amazon Kindle reader came out with a scant $30 discount that was made possible by the ads on the device uses had to put up with, I knew it would never work for me. A savings of $30 isn't enough to get me to put up with ads on anything. Still a bunch of folks did take Amazon up on the discounted price and were ready to endure the ads.
According to some leaked sales data, the total number of Amazon Kindle Fire tablets sold since being launched 5 days ago is hovering just over 250,000 units. Sales may have slowed down a bit since it was last estimated to have reached almost 100,000 units on its very first day, but it's nonetheless impressive, considering how other tablet rivals have fared.
It is according to one digital marketing firm, eDataSource, sales of the cloud-based Amazon Kindle Fire Android-based tablet have reached 95,000 in its first day on the market - all of those sales being pre-orders. That's not quite one-third of the 300,000+ first-gen iPads sold on the first day back when it was released in April of 2010, but 100,000 is no number to scoff at. The Kindle Fire will officially be shipping on November 15th, just in time for you-know-what, and retailers are currently having heart attacks over its low price tag at $199 standard.
Amazon has quietly removed support for general web browsing over 3G on the new Kindle Touch 3G, only allowing the ereader's experimental web browser to use the WiFi connection rather than the bundled cellular data access. "Our new Kindle Touch 3G enables you to connect to the Kindle Store, download books and periodicals, and access Wikipedia - all over 3G or Wi-Fi" an Amazon official confirmed over the weekend, however "experimental web browsing (outside of Wikipedia) on Kindle Touch 3G is only available over Wi-Fi."
There's no doubt the original Kindle, although popular, wasn't all that attractive. It had an angular design with a split keyboard and an odd scroll wheel. And now we know why. According to the NY Times, who spoke with an early Kindle hardware designer, that original version was so ugly because it was modeled after Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos' BlackBerry smartphone.
Analysts and pundits are queuing up to point out the Kindle Fire's shortcomings, and how Amazon's entrant to the tablet market is "not a true iPad competitor." Piper Jaffray's Gene Munster went so far as to estimate Amazon was swallowing fifty bucks loss on each Kindle Fire sold, crossing its fingers that multimedia sales would make up for it, and highlighted the slate's lacking storage, absent cameras and non-existent 3G option. The idea, it seems, is that because Amazon hasn't photocopied Apple's strategy - or, indeed, followed Android tablet manufacturers in trying to compete on specifications alone - and since the Kindle Fire's price is thus less than half that of the iPad, they "target different segments" and the iPad is in the clear. That seems pretty short-sighted.
Amazon's 10.1-inch Kindle Fire tablet is expected to hit production before the end of the year, with shipments potentially in time for the 2011 holiday sales season, according to the latest rumors. Although the larger Kindle tablet was initially tipped for release in early 2012, DigiTimes' sources reckon Amazon is pushing ahead with a more aggressive timescale for the Foxconn-produced 10-incher.