Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Kindle News: Amazon quelling August 7 rumors for Kindle Fire 2?

Now more 'sources' choose AllThingsD to put out a new estimated shipping date for Kindle Fire 2.

AllThingsD's John Paczkowski wrote on Sunday that "Sources familiar with Amazon's plans" apparently made contact to make sure the news got out (and it did) that:
'... the company hopes to debut the next iteration of the Kindle Fire in the second half of this year; the current launch window is late in the third quarter.'

I had rumor-manipulation fatigue and the news mainly promised a later delivery date for any new Kindle Fire 2's.  Normally Amazon uses the word 'launch' to mean they *announce* or intro a product with information on estimated delivery dates, but news sites have started to use the word to mean *deliver* a product into the customers' hands, and a lot of confusion results from that.

"Debut" of the Kindle 2 in the 2nd half could mean anywhere from July to December 2012. "Current launch window" being "late in the third quarter" gives us a September expectation rather than the August 7 one which did the rounds due to other sources, and Amazon, little doubt, might have wanted to quash that rumor since it would mean they'd not meet the sudden expectations that came from talk by 'supply chain' reps.

This report from AllThingsD comes from "sources that have been briefed," by Amazon, of course, and then gives us information in connection with "developers familiar with the device" and what they've "been instructed to build" in the way of apps for the new higher-resolution display.

Developers and the improved display resolution
The information about the Kindle Fire 2 itself is not changed nor enlarged beyond CNet's information the week before, other than that the display's screen shape is changing just enough to give developers more work on their currently used apps.  DisplayMate President Raymond Soneira told AllThingsD that the "...shape is changing from an aspect ratio of 1.71 (tall and narrow in its standard Portrait mode) to an aspect ratio of 1.60."

While it's pointed out that this is a 'fairly common" aspect ratio with tablets, and the 1280x800 pixel resolution will make the display slightly sharper, this is a new width-to-height ratio. Apps that use the length of the current Kindle 2 for material that must be on a page (as in game screens and even menu information) would have to make some relative adjustments in their apps for this model in addition to designing for 1200x800 pixels vs 1024x600.

  I've liked the longer, narrower aspect of the Kindle for wide-screen movies, as both the current Kindle Fire and Nook Tablet just fill up the screen rather than show us letterbox-style black areas in a smaller area for the film.  Now the new tablet will be the same size and the display area would still be diagonally about 7", but a wide-screen movie would need to fit a shorter length while the sides are further apart.  Those who use tablets mainly to read will like the width to height change.

Will Amazon move fast enough and offer enough?
  At any rate, we all need to adjust the expectations from the many rumors.  And Amazon has to, however, move as fast as they can, as the Google Nexus is making waves, due to more current hardware specs for the same price, even if they don't have the strong ecosystem nor any record of direct customer service.

 I think Amazon could well lose the 7" tablet battle (due to the limited easy access to apps) now that Google's tablet has the full-store capability and a media ecosystem of sorts) unless Amazon adds something bold and very much needed, such as an SD card slot, and then they'd run away with it.  They need to put more faith in the customer.

  The Google Nexus doesn't have an SD card slot and even in late 2012 has only 8 gigs for storage for the $200 price.  B&N's Nook Tablet has an SD card slot but B&N doesn't allow customers to side-load, to the tablet, apps from unknown sources while the current Amazon does allow sideloading of apps from other sources for its Kindle Fire (but most customers won't know how to find the apps (in safe-site settings) and most don't know how to sideload and install these.

Unusual Kindle Daily Deal book
Today's Kindle Daily Deal, for Tuesday only, is 'Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist David Halberstam's brilliant chronicle of "America and the Korean War"' -- $1.99 (80% off Mondays's price).

Kindle Fire  7" tablet - $199
Kindle NoTouch ("Kindle") - $79/$109
Kindle Touch, WiFi
- $99/$139
Kindle Touch, 3G/WiFi - $149/$189
Kindle Keybd 3G - $189, Free, slow web
Kindle DX - $379, Free, slow web
Kindle Basic, NoTouch - £89
Kindle Touch WiFi, UK - £109
Kindle Touch 3G/WiFi, UK - £169
Kindle Keyboard 3G, UK - £149
  Keybd: w/ Free, slow 3G WEB
OTHER International
Kindle NoTouch Basic - $109
Kindle Touch WiFi - $139
Kindle Touch 3G/WiFi - $189
Kindle Keybd 3G - $189
  Keybd: w/ Free, slow 3G WEB

  For daily free ebooks, check the following links:
Temporarily-free books - Non-classics
USA: by:
   Publication Date  
   Bestselling   High-ratings

UK: PubDate   Popular
The Kindle Daily Deal
What is 3G? and "WiFi"?       Battery Care
Highly-rated under $1,  Newest: $1-$2, $2-$3
Most Popular Free K-Books
U.S. & Int'l (NOT UK):
   Top 100 free
   Top 100 free
USEFUL for your Kindle Keyboard(U.S. only, currently):
  99c Notepad 1.1,   99c Calculator,
  99c Calendar,   99c Converter

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