Amazon today announced two models for its Fire tablet line that take affordability to a whole new level. The Fire HD 6 costs $99, while a 7-inch model starts at $139.
To put that into perspective, Amazon’s entry-level color tablets now cost roughly as much as the Paperwhite e-reader. Pre-orders for the new devices begin tonight ahead of an October ship date.
Both tablets will run Fire OS 4 Sangria. New software features include Profiles for switching between family members and ASAP for casting video to the Fire TV set-top box.
The Fire HD 6 sports a screen density of 252 pixels-per-inch, compared to 216 PPI for the HD 7. Both tablets includes a 1.5GHz quad-core process. The rear camera records 1080p video, but Amazon didn’t specify the resolution of still photos. The company claims the devices will get eight hours of battery life while reading, listening, watching and browsing on them.
Amazon has also developed a Kids Edition of the Fire HD 6 and HD 7, which cost $149 and $189 respectively. The tablets come with soft protective cover, a child-friendly OS with parental settings and a two-year replacement guarantee if it breaks. Customers also receive a one-year subscription to the company’s FreeTime Unlimited service for kids content.
Essentially, the Kids Edition is the regular Fire HD 6 and HD 7 bundled with a warranty, case and content subscription to cater to families. The Kids Edition will also ship in October.
With the Amazon Fire HD 6 and HD 7, Amazon has managed to make a tablet that breaks the crucial $100 price barrier. The company deserves credit for packing a respectable amount of features into a budget device. This could be a popular gift this holiday season for family members that don’t yet own a tablet.
Published September 18, 2014 — 01:00 UTC