Stop Thinking the Fire is an iPad-Killer

Last week, Amazon officially unleashed the Kindle Fire on the public. After a month of speculation, people finally got to be hands on with the device and the reviews came flowing in. Most reviews of the device mistakenly took the point of view that the Kindle Fire was an iPad killer, expecting $500 performance from a $200 device.  Again, this was a mistake, and proof that several gadget sites do not understand the product. I would seem that commenters on related threads also have the same problem.

Stop it!

The Kindle Fire is not meant to be an iPad killer. It never was meant to be an iPad killer. And if that’s what you’re looking for in the device, you’re going to be disappointed.  The Kindle Fire was designed from the ground up to be nothing more than a portal into Amazon’s services.  If you can’t understand this basic fact, you will never understand the Kindle’s market. Here’s a hint, it’s not people who want to buy iPads. Sure some people might pick up the Kindle Fire instead of an iPad, but the limited apps and functionality of the tablet will cause those people to buy an iPad eventually anyway.  The Kindle Fire’s market is those that are already tied to Amazon’s services, be it the Kindle books or the Amazon Video.  If someone already has a Amazon Prime membership, then the Kindle Fire is a device they might consider.

The Kindle Fire is meant to be a portal into Amazon’s ebook, video, music, and app store services.  A way for Amazon to pimp their services to a consumer and have them buy more books, video, and music.  It is meant to be a media consumption device, and that’s all. It is not meant to be a working device, in that you do actual work on it like you would on an iPad. The Kindle Fire is for media consumption, and Amazon wants you to buy that media through them.

So please, stop thinking and treating the Kindle Fire as an iPad killer. It’s not.


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1 Response to Stop Thinking the Fire is an iPad-Killer

  1. Brian Hartman says:

    I would agree that the Kindle is not an iPad killer, but for a different reason:  As you rightly point out, you can’t make a $500 device for $200.

    I think it’s going to wipe the floor with a lot of Android tablets, though.  Especially now that you can root it and put the Amazon Market and Google apps on it. A lot of higher-priced Android tablets are going to disappear if all they offer for the extra money is more memory and a camera (or two).

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