How Amazon’s Kindle Fire Falls Short

Posted on December 1, 2012 @ 2:33 pm

The Kindle Fire entered the market with projections by experts that it would be a direct competitor to the Apple iPad. There are even rumors that Apple plans to answer with a smaller iPad with a similar price. The Amazon Kindle Fire as a tablet does offer rivalry to higher priced Android tablets in particular. As the cost of the Amazon Kindle Fire is hard to beat, there’s one area in which the Amazon Kindle Fire falls horribly short.

So, what are the shortcomings? Connectivity! The moment the first generation Kindles hit the market as an e-readers, one of many selling points was free 3G service by AT&T. You purchased the Ereader and had the capability to surf Amazon’s e-book store everywhere you could get AT&T service which is most areas throughout the United States. Earlier Kindles also came with a cable that connected it with your computer, so you could download books and copy them manually.

The service ceased as soon as the Amazon Kindle Fire came out. Providing 3G to the Kindle Fire would mean data overload for AT&T. Not to mention, 3G speeds wouldn’t be able to support the ability of the Kindle Fire’s dual core processor. Therefore, users are limited to wi-fi service only on the Kindle Fire. This implies in order to use the web with the device , you must have access to a wi-fi hotspot or your home wi-fi.

The Kindle Fire on Lockdown. It seems that Amazon is so worried that users might gain access to an app market other than their own, that they’ve omitted all other sources of connectivity from the Fire. The Kindle has two ports. One is a regular headphone jack and the other is a micro USB to charge the device. Amazon doesn’t even include the USB cable in order to connect the Fire to your personal computer . In order to connect the Fire to your computer, you will need to purchase the cable separately. Only a standard charging cable is included.

Just why the Kindle Fire may well not stand up to competition. Even cheaper budget tablets ship with a lot more connectivity than the Kindle Fire. These units usually are loaded with options including an SD card slot, USB port and an HDMI interface. Adding this connectivity would make the Kindle Fire unstoppable. Having a USB port, users could have the option of using a mobile broadband plan to increase connectivity. A USB port additionally allows expansion of the 8 gb memory space available on the Kindle as would an SD card interface.

Solutions to the connectivity issue are really limited. The only way to gain full access to the Kindle Fire’s whole potential is to root the device. A procedure that’s not for the rookie and is somewhat of a gamble that would void your warranty. Nevertheless, as soon as the unit is rooted, you then have the option of adding in more app markets and broadening the ways the Kindle could be used. Besides that, there’s really no way currently to expand the ability to connect the unit to the Web. A large number of apps are useless without connectivity except for downloaded games and standalone productivity apps and utilities.

If rooting is out of the question, then users can purchase the connection cable and sideload apps onto the gadget. It isn’t really too difficult to locate app files, download them to your computer, after which you can drag and drop the file on to your Kindle Fire. The Fire will do the rest.

With new tablets hitting the market regularly targeting the cheaper prices, the Kindle Fire will rapidly lose its edge. Currently you can find tablets available which are just $30 or so more than the Kindle with all the current capabilities along with the connectivity options listed above. Bear in mind Bluetooth. Bluetooth provides a whole new dimension of connectivity to your device. Consider a Fire having a real keyboard, not the virtual onscreen type. It’s really a waiting game to find out if Amazon will step-up with a tablet that truly has the user in mind as opposed to their wallet.

To learn more about the Kindle Fire and Android tablets, check out some of the many resources available on the web. Make sure you read as many Android tablet reviews as possible to make certain you are getting a device that is right for your lifestyle.

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