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A review of the Amazon Kindle Fire HD

If you're thinking of getting a tablet, you might be considering the Amazon Kindle Fire HD. But is it worth purchasing or are there better options out there? With the battle of tablets getting fiercer, Amazon steps up the game and came up with an upgraded Kindle where you can do more than reading books.

What is possible on the Kindle Fire

As a short intro, the Amazon Kindle Fire HD boasts of a 7-inch HD display screen, Dolby stereo, Wi-Fi, and front-facing HD camera. The real drawer is the large selection of media files with access to over 23 million shows, movies, books, games, and apps available in the Amazon Marketplace.

Review

1. Screen . For starters, the HD screen has a resolution of 1280x800 with 216 ppi pixel which translates to sharp and crisp images. It's pretty great for watching videos and reading books where images often become blurry like in other tablets.

2. Performance. Its processor is powered by a 1.2GHz dual-core TI OMAP 4460 CPU. However, pages take too long to load and lag time is sometimes annoying.

3. User interface. Let us face it, Apple has an outstanding UI which is top notch. The Kindle Fire IU although responsive enough does not measure to that of the Mini, for example.

4. Weight. The Kindle Fire HD weighs at 395g, 90 g heavier than the Mini. As such it has a chunkier feel to it but it still is a reasonable weight to lug around.

5. Price. At an entry price of £159, the Kindle is very competitive compared to Apple products. Amazon is selling this at cost price hoping to cash in with sales of videos and books.

6. Apps. The Kindle Fire runs on an Android 4.0 platform for its OS but you'll hardly feel it because Amazon modified a lot of things. It sorely lacks in both apps and games compared to the competition even if major players are there such as FB, Twitter, Skype and Evernote. You also get familiar titles like Angry Birds and Plants vs. Zombies. In this aspect, Apple and Google still are way ahead.

7. Battery. Battery life is supposed to last for 11 hours, and when tested seems true to its claim.

8. Connectivity. Amazon boasts of ‘dual –band’ ‘dual-antenna’ Wi-Fi for faster connectivity, stability, and increased bandwidth, but it's not really noticeable. In its grace, it has a micro-B USB port and a micro-HDMI out port.

Our take

The new Amazon Kindle Fire HD is a pleasant surprise and has many things going for it. Its main strengths lie in its neat 7-inch HD screen, a powerful processor and really, a great range of media files you can peruse. And, with such a competitive starting price, it can be a great option if you’re seeking your first new tablet. It is easy to use and its Dolby speakers sound great. You can browse the web, send emails, download videos, books and more on this reasonably-priced tablet.

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