What do you hear from Google? Samsung? Microsoft? Nokia? HTC? Motorola? Amazon? They all announce new products but never how many they’ve sold. Here’s this week’s second iPad killer.
Amazon’s Latest Kindle On Fire
Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos is pining to become the Steve Jobs of the post-PC era, and what better way to reach that lofty goal than to sell yet another iPad killer.
The Kindle Fire HDX claims to be faster, lighter, and more capable than the Kindle Fire HD it replaces (now reduced in price).
The latest Kindle tablets have a few unique features beyond the 7-inch and 8.9-inch models. Each device packs in more pixels than Apple’s iPad with Retina display (not that you’d notice).
Kindle HDX comes with live customer service in the form of a video window that pops up on the screen, giving the tech support rep access and control of your tablet.
Nothing to worry about that, right?
Research firm NPD said that Kindle has about 17-percent of the U.S. tablet market, while Samsung has only 8-percent, while Apple’s iPad remains king at 48-percent. NPD says Amazon shipped a measly 470,000 tablets in the spring quarter. Apple sells over 1-million iPads each week.
Something doesn’t add up, though. If the quarterly market is about 30-million, and Apple owns half of that with 14-million tablets actually sold, how does Kindle have 17-percent of the tablet market but has sold less than 1-million units?
As to how many tablets are actually sold, either in the U.S. or worldwide, the numbers are mere guesstimates– Amazon follows Microsoft, Samsung, Google, et al, and does not release actual sales numbers.
On Fire With Specifications
The Kindle HDX sports a Qualcomm quad-core Snapdragon 800 CPU. Amazon plans to price the new tablet at $239 for the 7-inch model, and $379 for the 8.9-inch model which also has a rear-facing 8-megapixel camera. 4G LTE versions will cost an additional $100, and each model comes with 2GB of RAM.
The 7-inch model has a 1920 x 1200 pixel display, while the 8.9-inch HDX has a whopping 2560 x 1600 pixel display. Amazon’s Bezos brags that the company sells Kindle HD devices at about break-even, and plan to make money by selling media to tablet users.
Wherefore Art Thou, Apple?
Apple has remained notoriously silent about future iPad and iPad mini models. While competitors are offering tablets with improved hardware and software, Apple has not upgraded the iPad line in almost a year, fueling speculation of an October surprise.