Image Source: Mockup done by TechCrunch’s Greg Kumparak
For some time now many people who follow the tablet market (including myself) have thought that the expected upcoming tablet from Amazon might well prove to be the first real rival for the iPad.
Now, TechCrunch’s MG Siegler has had a chance to see a near-final testing unit for the device, which will be called the Amazon Kindle. Siegler’s article on his impressions of it is full of fascinating facts about the new Kindle. Here are just a few that caught my eye:
— It’s a 7 inch tablet – and its release is targeted for the end of November. If it’s successful there are plans to release a 10 inch model early next year.
— It will be priced at $250 – half the price of an entry level iPad and the same as Barnes & Noble’s Nook Color.
— It has a capacitive touch screen, but Siegler says this about it:
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.
— It will run Amazon’s own fork of Android, which apparently looks nothing at all like any version that’s out there on tablets now.
— Siegler thinks it has only 6GB of internal storage as it’s intended to be a real cloud device when it comes to music and movies. And it’s WiFi only.
— One of its key selling points:
But the key for Amazon is just how deeply integrated all of their services are. Amazon’s content store is always just one click away. The book reader is a Kindle app (which looks similar to how it does on Android and iOS now). The music player is Amazon’s Cloud Player. The movie player is Amazon’s Instant Video player. The app store is Amazon’s Android Appstore.
Check out Siegler’s article for lots more detail and lots more of his impressions on the Amazon Kindle: http://techcrunch.com/2011/09/02/amazon-kindle-tablet/
From the sounds of it, the Amazon Kindle has a lot going for it and should be the first non-iPad tablet to make a big splash in the market. It doesn’t sound much like a direct rival to the iPad though – but more like a device that’s going to become the leader of the Android pack.
What do you all think of the Amazon Kindle? Will you be looking to buy one? Would you buy one instead of an iPad? Or instead of another Android tablet?