Kindle Fire Update Expected in Less Than 2 Weeks, Will Address Performance Issues
December 12, 2011 10:03 AM
Users' laundry list of complaints about the new tablet has Amazon working on software improvements
Amazon's first dip into the tablet arena, the Kindle Fire, was a long-awaited competitor that had many buzzing before its November release. But now that the Fire has been on the market for nearly a month,
reviews from users are rolling in
and it looks as if the Fire's flame that drove its initial success is burning out.
The Kindle Fire, which was released November 15, 2011, features a 7-inch multi-touch display, a 1 GHz Texas Instruments OMAP 4 dual-core processor, 512 MB memory, 8 GB storage capacity, 802.11n Wi-Fi connectivity, Amazon's own unique version of the Android operating system and a $199 price point.
Many saw the $199 price as a true advantage over other tablets currently on the market,
such as the $499 iPad 2
. But users are finding that you truly get what you pay for.
So what are the chief complaints exactly? Apparently there's quite a list: the off switch is easy to hit by accident; Web pages take their time loading; the touch screen is not very responsive; there is no external volume control, and others can easily see what you have been doing on the Fire since you cannot edit your history.
The New York Times
, one-third of 4,500 Fire reviewers have given the device three stars or fewer out of five. Since November 18, five-star reviews have fallen from 50 percent to 47 percent while 13 percent have the device just one star.
"I have spent thousands on your outstanding site," said one review aimed at Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. "I own and love the original Kindle. When asked about why I would buy a Fire when I had an iPad, I said that half of me wanted to just support your effort and that I believed Amazon just did things right."
However, the customer later said he'd recommend an iPad 2 over the Fire.
In response to all of the negativity, Amazon is planning to release an over-the-air update to
in less than two weeks. The update will address the privacy complaint by allowing users to edit their recent activity on the tablet, and will boost performance and multi-touch navigation.
While the update will address some important software issues, some are already awaiting the successor of the Kindle Fire tablet in hopes of some hardware changes such as external volume controls, a camera, and maybe even a larger screen, since most Web pages are better suited for 10-inch tablet displays.
The New York Times
The Washington Post
"It's okay. The scenarios aren't that clear. But it's good looking. [Steve Jobs] does good design, and [the iPad] is absolutely a good example of that." -- Bill Gates on the Apple iPad
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