You can now run Kindle Fire software on other Android devices

One of the advantages of Android is that it’s very customizable. You can jailbreak iOS and install third party software, but on Android you can change much more intricate pieces of the OS – or switch to other OS versions completely. The Amazon Kindle Fire is an example of an Android tablet that doesn’t look much like Android because of special apps and launch screens. The Fire has already been rooted to allow you to get more traditional Android on it, and now the opposite has happened with Fire software being available on other devices.

After getting the files from the XDA developers forum, Kevin Tofel started playing around with the files on his first generation 7-inch Samsung Galaxy Tab. The screen size and resolution is the same, while the Tab’s hardware is a bit more outdated – though the successor, the Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus, is more powerful. Turns out that the Fire interface is just a launcher for a bunch of apps that hide underneath, and you can have you choice of installing the interface or just the apps. He says that there are some issues with icons and text, but that the apps work fine. Specifically, he’s able to stream video from Amazon Prime using one of the Fire apps (though he had to go to rent a movie to prompt the login, and then cancel to stream video) and use the Fire’s version of the Amazon App Store which is supposedly better looking than the stock Amazon App Store app.

The reason you would do this is to access the content eco system that Amazon has created around the Fire. Since that’s what Amazon plans on making money off – not the Fire itself – I doubt they will mind that people use this trick. Since most of Amazon’s services are US only though, anyone outside the US won’t benefit from it. It might also not work right on devices with different screen resolutions than the Fire, which would include most Honeycomb tablets. Either way, kudos to everyone involved in getting this working – missing content sources has been a criticism towards Android for a while and things like this helps a lot.

[GigaOM Mobilize | XDA developers]

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Andreas Ødegård

Andreas Ødegård is more interested in aftermarket (and user created) software and hardware than chasing the latest gadgets. His day job as a teacher keeps him interested in education tech and takes up most of his time.