It’s called simply the “Amazon Kindle”. But it’s not like any Kindle you’ve seen before. It displays content in full color. It has a 7-inch capacitive touch screen. And it runs Android.Rumors of Amazon making a full-fledged tablet device have persisted for a while. I believe we were one of the first to report on the possibilityfrom a credible source — the same person whoaccurately called Amazon’s Android Appstore. That source was dead-on again, it just took Amazon longer than anticipated to get the device ready to go. They’re now close.How do I know all of this? Well, not only have I heard about the device, I’ve seen it and used it. And I’m happy to report that it’s going to be a big deal. Huge, potentially.First of all, before every commenter asks, no, sadly, I don’t have any pictures to share. That was the one condition of me getting this information. So instead you’ll have to rely on my prose to draw a picture of the device in your head. Or you can just look at a BlackBerry PlayBook — because it looks very similar in terms of form-factor.So here’s what I know and what I saw:Again, the device is a 7-inch tablet with a capacitive touch screen. It is multi-touch, but from what I saw, I believe the reports that it relies on a two-finger multi-touch (instead of 10-finger, like the iPad uses) are accurate. This will be the first Kindle with a full-color screen. And yes, it is back-lit. There is no e-ink to be found anywhere on this device.Earlier this week, reports suggested that a 7-inch Amazon tablet could be released in October, with a larger, 10-inch version to follow next year. That’s somewhat accurate. As of right now, Amazon’s only definitive plan is to release this 7-inch Kindle tablet and they’re targeting the end of November to do that. The version I saw was a DVT (Design Verification Testing) unit. These have started floating around the company. It’s ready, they’re just tweaking the software now. If it’s not in production yet, it will be very soon.Originally, Amazon had planned to launch a 7-inch and a 10-inch tablet at the same time. But that plan changed this summer. Now they’re betting everything on the 7-inch. If it’s a hit, they will release the more expensive 10-inch tablet in Q1 2012.So how much will the 7-inch Kindle cost? $250.
Friday, September 02, 2011
The first real competitor
For the iPad. Because it has an entire already existing ecosystem. The Amazon tablet. [Link]