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The Ultimate Kindle Fire HD, 8.9″, 4G LTE And Paperwhite Buyer’s Guide

by on September 6, 2012
 


Which Kindle should I buy

Today, Amazon held a keynote presentation to reveal the next-generation of Kindle products. A total of five new Kindle devices were announced – the Kindle Fire HD, Kindle Fire HD 8.9″, Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ 4G LTE, Kindle Paperwhite and Kindle Paperwhite 3G. First, let’s go over the five new tablets in order from least to most expensive.

Which Kindle should I buy?

Amazone Kindle Paperwhite Overview

Kindle Paperwhite (3G)

Highlights:

  • Build-in light that completely brightens the display in all lighting conditions
  • An incredibly high 8-week battery life (with the light on)
  • A New and advanced Paperwhite display with 62% more pixels
  • Enhanced contrast (up to 62%) for the perfect reading experience
  • Paperwhite technology means crisp text and clear images and virtually no glare, even in total sunlight
  • Can store approximately 1,100 books
  • Integrated Wi-Fi enables users to download books in under 60 seconds
  • Optional 3G connectivity

Overview:

The Kindle Paperwhite comes in two different variations: standard and 3G-ready. Starting at $119, the Kindle Paperwhite introduces a brand new, first-ever Paperwhite display to the Kindle. While the name hints of the functionality of the new technology, the facts behind the name are, nevertheless, impressive. Featuring an unsurpassed resolution with approximately 62% more pixels, a 25% higher contrast ratio and a new system that guides light to the display from above to reduce fatigue and minimize eye strain, the new Paperwhite display is better than ever.

For an additional $60, customers can buy the $179 Kindle Paperwhite 3G model to download their favorite content on the go. Amazingly enough, that extra $60 will equip the Kindle Paperwhite with free 3G without annual contracts or monthly fees.

Summary:

Kindle Paperwhite and Kindle Paperwhite 3G were built with the reader in mind. While customers who are interested in rich multi-media content, fast-paced games, intriguing apps and HD movies and TV shows should look elsewhere for a tablet, the Kindle Paperwhite is the ideal choice for those of us who so easily become obsessed with reading novels, magazines and newspapers.

Kindle Fire HD

Kindle Fire or Kindle Fire HD

Highlights:

  • An advanced 7-inch HD display with a polarizing filter In-Plane Switching (IPS), reduced glare and a resolution of 1280-by-800
  • “Exclusive” Dolby audio provides what’s referred to as, “virtual surround sound”
  • A new dual-band, dual-antenna Wi-Fi system
  • 1.2 GHz dual-core processor with Imagination PowerVR 3D graphics
  • Front-facing HD camera
  • Unlimited cloud storage through Amazon


Overview:

The upgraded Kindle Fire HD, available for a starting price of $199, offers numerous improvements over its predecessor – the original Kindle Fire. For only $40 more,  customers can buy the HD version of the tablet, which offers an improved HD display, upgraded speakers, faster Wi-Fi connectivity, a front facing-camera, 16GB and 32GB variants (priced accordingly at $199 and $249) and an improved battery life – the Kindle Fire HD is the obvious choice.

The new, redesigned Kindle Fire HD comes equipped with a similar 1.2GHz Dual-core processor as the the original tablet. While both the Kindle Fire and the Kindle Fire HD clock in at 1.2GHz, the HD model is build with a OMAP4460 processor, whereas the original Fire sports a OMAP4430 processor. The key difference between the two tablet’s processors isn’t in responsiveness, but in power management and graphics. After all, an upgraded battery isn’t the only reason the Kindle Fire HD has such an improved battery life. Also, as previously mentioned, the dual-core processor with an Imagination PowerVR 3D graphics core means the tablet can run rich games with stunning graphics.

Summary:

The Kindle Fire HD is the ideal choice for customers in need of an inexpensive, 7-inch tablet that can still pack a punch. The HD model is enhanced over its predecessor in practically every way imaginable and, at such an inexpensive starting price, the Kindle Fire HD is a must-have gadget for customers who are looking for the tablet experience in a smaller form-factor for a lower price.

Kindle Fire HD 8.9″

What is the Kindle Fire HD 8.9 inch

Highlights:

  • 8.9 inch HD display with a polarizing filter, In-Plane Switching (IPS), anti-glare technology and a resolution of 1920-by-1200
  • Similar Dolby audio speaks as the Kindle Fire HD 7-inch tablet
  • A new dual-band, dual-antenna Wi-Fi system
  • High-performace 1.5Ghz dual-core processor with an Imagination PowerVR 3D graphics core
  • Front-facing HD camera
  • Unlimited cloud storage through Amazon

Overview:

Amazon’s Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ tablet offers various improvements over the standard 7-inch Kindle Fire HD and is a world apart from the original Kindle Fire. Its impressive 8.9-inch HD display boasts a resolution of 1920-by-1200 with a pixel density of 254 ppi (that’s only 10 pixels away from the 9.7-inch iPad 3′s 264 pixels per inch). Also, with its enhanced HD resolution, the Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ is capable of playing both movies and TV shows in 1080p.

Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Dual Antennas Download Speeds
Also, the Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ is the world’s first tablet to implement a dual-band, dual-antenna system. While it doesn’t sound like much, the Wi-Fi antennas built into Amazon’s higher-end tablets  (included are the Kindle Fire HD, Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ and Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ 4G all feature this dual-antenna system) allow for 40%+ faster download speeds. It accomplishes this buy utilizing two antennas, Multiple In/Multiple Out (MIMO) technology and operating and automatically switching between the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz Wi-Fi frequencies for the better range and the least amount of interference.

 

Summary:

The Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ 16GB and 32GB models (respectively priced at $299 and $369) are Amazon’s higher-end tablets, targeted towards customers who desire improved graphics and performance over even the 7-inch Kindle Fire HD.

Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ 4G LTE

Kindle Fire HD LTE data plans

Highlights:

  • Blazing-fast 4G LTE connectivity
  • The optional, higher priced, 64GB model
  • An additional 20GB of Cloud Drive storage for content that isn’t purchased through any of Amazon’s virtual stores (i.e. pictures)


Overview:

The Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ 4G LTE model is virtually identical to the standard Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ tablet. The primary difference, as the name would suggest, is the optional 4G LTE data service. For an unusually low price of $49.99 per year, the Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ 4G model is supplied with 250 MB of LTE data usage per month (the equivalent plan through AT&T on the iPad 3 LTE model costs approximately $230 over the course of a year).

Additionally, the LTE model comes bundled with an extra 20GB of Cloud Drive storage for content and a $10 credit to the Amazon Appstore.

Summary:

While the “4G LTE” tagline of the cellular Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ model sounds enticing, don’t be quick to pick one up. As of now, it appears the only available plan for the device restricts data usage to a mere 250 MB per month. Unless you plan on using the LTE connection exclusively for occasionally browsing the web and checking your email, that 250 MB will be consumed faster than you can say Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ 4G LTE and, with outrageous overage fees, it’ll cost more than it’s worth. Moreover, with a $130 price difference between the 32GB Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ model and the 4G version, the advantages of LTE seem minimal.

Kindle Fire, HD, HD 8.9″ and HD 8.9″ 4G LTE comparison chart:

Kindle Fire HD, 8.9" HD, 4G LTE Buyer's Guide

Conclusion:

With Amazon’s new Kindle Paperwhite (3G), Kindle Fire HD and Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ (4G LTE) tablets, avid readers, HD media enthusiasts, intense tablet gamers and social junkies alike will all be able to have their separate tablet-related needs met. So, what are you waiting for? Visit Amazon’s official site for complete details and stay tuned for additional coverage on Amazon and their tablets.

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  • Mary
    October 6, 2012 at 11:29 pm

    For the newest one, is that $50 for service every year, b/c I saw on Amazon’s site that that price was only for the first year. Is there any info out about yet about what the 4G service cost is for the following years?

    Reply

  • Oe8903
    September 6, 2012 at 6:42 pm

    Great informational article!

    Reply

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