Many had hoped that the Internet retailer would take the wraps off a much-anticipated
tablet PC to challenge the
iPad (which it did), but the company also unveiled three new e-ink e-readers. The new
Kindle Touch with Wi-Fi will sell for $99; its 3G version will sell for $149. A cheaper and smaller non-touch Kindle will sell for $79.
Amazon Kindle Touch 3G vs. Kindle Touch vs. Kindle (2011)
But the big news of the day was the Android-based Kindle Fire tablet--Amazon's stab at the crowded tablet PC market, which is already dominated by Apple's iPad.
At $199, the 7-inch Kindle Fire is sure to find a bigger audience than other Apple iPad challengers, but the lower price point means that Amazon hasn't packed the device with specifications found in more expensive tablets.
Amazon to lose $50 on each Kindle Fire, says analyst
The Fire also features a new Web browser called Silk, the latest effort to make Web browsing faster, especially on portable devices where the hardware is typically slower than what a person might have on a desktop or notebook computer.
Amazon Silk: One step forward, two steps back
To beat Apple, Amazon's trying to be Apple
Will the Kindle Fire burn the iPad?
The Kindle Fire's real threat is to Microsoft
Included in all this is an assault on Netflix, with Amazon bundling the Fire with a free one-month subscription to Amazon Prime, which gives customers "instant commercial-free streaming of over 11,000 movies and TV shows at no additional cost." After the free month is over, Fire owners can sign up for Prime, which costs $79 annually and includes free two-day shipping on any purchase from the retailer. Compare that with the $96 Netflix's charges just for streaming movies.
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