The Amazon Kindle Fire is officially being released tomorrow, November 15th. We've talked a ton about Amazon's first true foray into the tablet space because it's an affordable 7-inch Android tablet with a feature that most affordable tablets (regardless of size) don't have: an ecosystem.
Amazon is bringing its entire catalog of streaming music and video as well as its Kindle services to the Fire, a device that, for $199, gives you a 1GHz dual-core processor, 512MB of RAM, and 8GB of internal storage. Of course, because of the streaming services, you'll likely not fill that 8GB up very quickly.
Kindle Fires started to appear on the doorsteps of some eager preorder-ers today, and the rest of the devices should reach others' tomorrow. But I'm curious: did any of you purchase a Fire?
If so, what made you hand over the $199? I see a ton of potential in streaming content and "subsidized" (cheap) tablets from those streaming content providers, but I'm interested in seeing what comes out of the competition, like the options that I will detail past the break.
Disclaimer: These possibilities are completely hypothetical. The fact that Amazon, a retailer and streaming media provider, is getting into the tablet game made me think that there's a possibility of other streaming media providers doing the same exact thing. My thoughts aren't based off of any industry rumors. They're from my brain.
So, first off, I think Hulu could definitely be a company interested in doing the same thing. I mean, who hasn't heard of Hulu? It's got a great service tied in with enough cable providers to entice consumers and make them purchase a "subsidized" tablet with a subscription to Hulu Plus. Hulu's tablet wouldn't be just any old tablet, of course. I'm sure the company would spend big cash on getting a nice display for HD content. It could be like the Galaxy Nexus' 720p HD display, but it could possibly be even better. It just depends on how much Hulu would charge for both the device and the service.
Video isn't the only media out there, though. There's also music, and right now, my favorite streaming service is Spotify. I've been using it since the beta invites and it's absolutely fantastic. In this scenario, Spotify could easily skimp on the display and focus on the CPU processing power for audio hardware from the likes of Beats Audio or a similar company. It's also gotta be pocketable, so I'm thinking that the biggest screen would be around a 4-inch measurement, and Spotify would definitely use a display technology to keep the thickness down.
There are obviously other companies in the same spaces as the previous two, but Hulu and Spotify have been greeted with open arms from consumers in the US. I'm definitely interested in the Kindle Fire, but I still see potential from other companies who specialize in one specific media type to create absolutely stellar hardware for it.
If you did purchase a Fire, and it came today, how are you liking it? Is it worth the $199 and, more importantly, are you considering a Amazon Prime membership if you don't already have one? That second question is the big one for Amazon and potentially Spotify and Hulu: they want the subscription money, and if they get that, they've made a good product. If they don't, though, we won't be seeing any more "subsidized" tablets.