Apple is expected to announce its new iPhone later today, but Amazon already announced a number of new low-cost Kindle ebook readers last week, but they’re a bit different to the models with black-and-white screens that have so far been available in the UK.
The new models are called the Kindle Fire HD and Kindle Fire, and they’re updates to a Kindle that has been available in the US for some time.
Both models have full-colour touch-screens and work much like any Android tablet — in fact both models use the Android operating system, albeit a special version developed by Amazon.
The Kindle Fire HD has a 7” screen with a 1280 x 800 resolution, 1.2GHz dual-core processor, 16GB storage capacity and a claimed 11-hour battery life.
The Kindle Fire also has a 7” screen, but with a lower resolution of 1024 x 600, a single-core 1.2GHz processor, and 8GB of storage and a 9-hour battery life.
Both the Kindle Fire HD and Kindle Fire use Android 4 and should be able to run the same apps as other Android tablets.
The real selling point of both models, however, is their price — the Kindle Fire HD costs £159 and the Kindle Fire just £129. Both will be available in the UK from 25th October and Amazon is taking pre-orders now.
Amazon also launched a Kindle Fire HD model in the US with an 8.9” screen for $499 (around £312), but there’s no news about if or when this might be available in the UK.
The same applies to Amazon’s new Kindle Paperwhite. This is a more traditional ebook reader with a black-and-white screen, but the screen technology has been updated for faster page-turning and much better contrast compared to current models. US prices start at $119 (around £74).