Friday, August 31, 2012

Kindle News: More pics of 'new Kindle Fire' sent to Verve along with images of 'new eInk' model. Kindle Fire 2 to have mapping services via Nokia Oyji - UPDATE3

The Verge gets more "new Kindle Fire" pictures from the source also sending images said to be of a new "Kindle paperwhite" model complete with a welcome note from Jeff Bezos.

Here's one from the e-Ink model image batch that The Verve received.

  Included in their article on the e-Ink model is a page for more 'paperwhite' images

Are these for real and if so why were they sent?
What's interesting is they don't say these are from an Amazon source; yet they've now received a "large collection of additional images" of a new Fire and the 'Paperwhite.'  There's a small chance someone is having fun Photoshopping a pack to see the reaction -- one has to wonder why a source is sending all this when it could hurt any element of surprise on Sept. 6.

  One answer may be that text for the books in the images of the "paperwhite" display is in French.  Maybe it's someone in the chain outside the U.S. who's breaking a non-disclosure agreement or NDA.

Why are some display shots gray and some white?
  Another oddity is that two of the images of the e-Ink Kindle are screensavers that display the the usual medium-gray screens -- why send those too ? -- and could have been taken from the current Kindles and modified with a darkened bezel.  It's all very curious.

  My own impression of the sends is that the whiter ones look as if they were taken from elongated photos of a Nook, and this includes the home screen with the bottom-half headed "Recommended for You" which I've always considered B&N's ad-area equivalent.

Why is the latest Kindle Fire 2 image of a device with a longer form like the current Kindle Fire?
  Both the Kindle Fire and E-Ink models seem not to have changed much in form and button placement, but, wait -- wouldn't the Kindle Fire 2 be more squat at a 4:3 ratio than the original Kindle Fire? and isn't this double-image of a new Kindle Fire different in aspect ratio from the first Kindle Fire picture sent Verve?  Can't see the webcam lens on the long side of the latest image, but it could be obscured by the logo they use.

 Is this an image of a longer 7" model in portrait orientation along with one of a 10" or 8.9" model at 4:3 aspect ratio alongside it (without relative sizing?)?  What's that lighted dot at the short right side.  Note that this would be an example of an active Skype session.

  (Both Kindle Fire images, if made brighter in a viewer, show artifacts above each side of the Skype image head, and the 'depth' of the inner side of the bezel is missing where the top of the head is, as if it were overlaid.  Artifacts are as if it has been terribly compressed (for what reason?) and the bottom area has some editing in the inside of the bezel meeting the Skype image also.  Now, since they used an image of a real person there, this should be interesting.
  The bezel of the Kindle Fire in portrait orientation has artifacts around text that would be overlaid.  The bezel seems to show editing strokes.  The rounded corners of each have bad artifacts too.  The whole thing is odd.  The oddly placed artifacts could just be editing (from Amazon France tester or developer) for sending and publication, or may be partially a result of The Verge's part in putting on their logo and compressing it again with another FileSave.  No idea, but the Skype image seems added to the tablet frame and is a sloppy looking jpg. [End of Update]

Update 2 - I've added a brightened and enlarged version of the new Kindle Fire double image sent to The Verve to show where the photo's artifacts exist in the photo and where they don't, to illustrate some of what I described.  I saved it at 95% which doesn't add very noticeable artifacts.  [End of Update2]

Update 3 - I'm putting into my updates for the first two The Verge stories, the following, which Chris Ziegler added about their source, at the bottom of their first story on the images after someone wrote them to say their first image was not of the new Kindle Fire that the writer had played with:
   ' Update: Though we know that this image originates with Amazon, another source adds the following:
"That picture you guys posted is not the new Kindle Fire. I know because I have held the new Kindle Fire in my hand and played with it for extensive periods of time... the bezel on the new Kindle Fire is wider. It has sloping sides like the old Motorola Xoom, so it sits nicely in the hand."
Whether the picture above is an unfinished prototype of the new model or one of several devices that will debut next week, we don't know yet, but we can confirm that it's authentic and is part of a larger set of images depicting a new Kindle device. '

 If these pictures are the real deal (still somewhat in question), those looking for small physical page-turn bars won't see them on the e-Ink device and I see no buttons at all on either device.  Any volume control would probably be a rocker-type.

 Now, if the whiter-look of the e-Ink model is due to a different kind of front-lighting done by the company they acquired some time ago, that would definitely be nice, but unless they say something more about the source, I do wonder about these images.

Kindle Fire 2 and location capabilities

Amazon is adding location capabilities to the next Kindle Fire, and as Reuter's Alistair Barr points out, this requires either a GPS chip or "WiFi triangulations."

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  1. The Kindle Touch images do look more like 'compositions' than actual photographs. Still I hope they are accurate in conveying the new 'look' and features. If this is a higher resolution screen (1024x768) with better contrast (despite the front light layer that presumably is there, I will definitely be getting one. It would be a bonus if existing covers still fit, but that may be too much to hope for.

    Improvements to battery performance would be great also. Kindle Touch is heavier than Nook and Sony and that should give some margin for improvement.

    With a higher resolution screen, perhaps they will add the additional typefaces that the latest versions of Kindle Previewer shows for Kindle Touch, and embedded fonts will look better at smaller text sizes.

    I'm pretty uninterested in the new Fires at the moment, no doubt in part because I just won a drawing for an iPad (which should arrive by the time of the Amazon announcement event). And overall I can't say I really like my Fire One all that much, and I don't think Amazon has demonstrated much commitment to improving it (as they rush off to work on the next devices).

    But Amazon does pretty well at generating interest so I would not rule anything out.

    Enjoy the announcement event!

    1. Tom !
      Hoping the same. Re existing covers still fitting, I have a hunch probably not or they wouldn't have had such a massive 40% off so many accessories, but I hope I'm off-base there.

      I do have the Samsung 10.1" Tab (1) and enjoy it but it's bigger than I like for everyday use.

      Thanks! AM looking fwd to getting a glimpse of them myself.


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