Amazon’s First Tablet Based on PlayBook Hardware?

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Ryan Block published an interesting post at the Gdgt site yesterday, titled ‘The Amazon tablet will look like a PlayBook — because it basically is’.

Apparently the Amazon tablet – to be called the Kindle Fire and unveiled tomorrow according to TechCrunch – uses the Blackberry PlayBook as its ‘hardware template’. The PlayBook has thus far been a huge failure of course, so that’s not exactly an auspicious starting point for a tablet that many people (myself included) feel may be the first non-iPad device to really make an impact in the tablet arena.

This bit of Block’s post also doesn’t sound good:

Although Amazon did refresh the ID of their PlayBook derivative, I’m told that this first tablet of theirs is "supposed to be pretty poor" and is a "stopgap" in order to get a tablet out the door for the 2011 holiday season …

If this proves accurate that’s a pretty surprising approach. Why risk tarnishing the reputation of a Kindle tablet right away with a sub-par device? Maybe Amazon can get away with not-so-great hardware because, like Apple, they have a powerful ‘ecosystem’ to make their device stand out.

In any case, it’s going to be very interesting to see what Amazon announces tomorrow.

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Patrick Jordan

Founder and Editor in Chief of iPad Insight. Husband, father to a lovely daughter, Commander of the Armies of the North, dog lover (especially Labs), Austinite, former Londoner, IT consultant, huge sports nut, iPad and mobile tech blogger, mobile apps junkie.

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