The wait is over. After months of building up speculation, churning Amazon Tablet rumour mills and announcing a trio of new Kindles, Jeff Bezos has officially unveiled the Amazon Kindle Fire tablet set to take on the Apple iPad 2 in the coming months.
So, what's so special about it? Read on to find out ten things you need to know about the Amazon Kindle tablet.
Amazon Kindle Fire Build
Weighing in at 413g, the Amazon Kindle Fire is lighter than the BlackBerry PlayBook (425g) a device where comparisons have already been made, which should make it light enough to use in one hand.
Amazon Kindle Fire Display
The Kindle Fire hosts a 7-inch screen IPS touchscreen 1024x 600 pixel resolution display that also supports multi-touch. Demonstrations of the Kindle Fire also appear to suggest we can expect Gorilla Glass protection for the 7--inch display which should help make it a bit more resilient to knocks.
Amazon Kindle Fire Operating System
While details remain sketchy over OS, it appears that the Kindle Fire runs primarily on Android Honeycomb but in a customized guise that makes it very different from anything else we've seen on a tablet before.
Amazon Kindle Fire Specs
There's just Wi-Fi support which includes public hotspots and private Wi-Fi networks but we imagine an Amazon Kindle Fire 3G could well be in the pipeline as well.
There's 8GB of internal storage with the addition of free cloud storage for all Amazon content you purchase. In terms of outputs, there's a USB 2.0 port and a 3.5mm headphone jack.
Battery life is expected to be around eight hours for reading, or 7.5 hours of video playback depending on your Wi-Fi usage.
Amazon Kindle Fire features
There's no sign of a camera or a microphone, however the Kindle Fire does sport top mounted speakers. Using your pre-registered details with Amazon.com, you can expect to get access to 100,000 movies and television shows, 17 million songs, full colour magazines, the Kindle book store and the Android App Store.
Amazon also introduced Whispersync for films and TV shows which allows you to resume viewing on your TV at home from where you last left off.
"A thread of silk is an invisible yet an incredibly strong connection." This was the explanation given by Amazon for one of the most unique Kindle Fire features which it is calling 'Dynamic Split Browsing.'
It essentially means that web browsing can be performed both on the device and in the cloud, to help maintain the Fire's performance. The video below helps explain what Amazon Silk is all about.
Amazon Kindle Fire UK price
So how much is the 7-inch slate going to cost you? Well the Kindle Fire in the US is priced in at $199 which if we convert into British pounds works out at around £130. That's around £15 more than the Amazon Kindle and certainly a lot lower than the Apple iPad in terms of price.
Amazon Kindle Fire UK release date
There's no confirmation on an Amazon Kindle Fire launch just yet, but if we go by the US release date which is November 15th, we are hopeful it will land just in time to grab one for Christmas.