Amazon Kindle Fire review

Love

  • Incredible pricepoint
  • Intuitive
  • innovative UI
  • Surprisingly good display

Hate

  • No Android Market
  • Slow performance
  • No UK availability
title: Amazon Kindle Fire: Apps / url: apps

Amazon Kindle Fire:Apps

No Android tablet can match up to the App Store ecosystem, not by a long shot, but when you take the Android Market out of the mix, as Amazon have done to push its own Appstore, then the catalogue diminishes drastically.

The company does have a host of top partners on board, meaning essentials like Angry Birds, Words With Friends, Fruit Ninja, IMDb, Netflix and Pandora are around, but the Facebook app, for example, is just a shortcut to the mobile site and Twitter is among the many big names currently MIA.

The lack of Google’s native app shop also means no YouTube, Gmail, Google+, Maps, Navigation, Translate and the rest. These are the bread-and-butter Android apps and they’re sorely missed here. Again, for better or worse, this really doesn’t feel like an Android device.

Amazon Kindle Fire:Multimedia

Amazon has only allowed 8GB of storage (no SD card slot either) into the Kindle Fire meaning you aren’t going to be able to pack the device with your own music, photos and videos.

The company wants you to rely on its Amazon Cloud Drive storage locker to keep your files on tap.

There’s also free movie and TV show streaming to Amazon Prime members (there’s a free one month trial with the device), while, like iTunes, movies can be rented also.

The Amazon MP3 store offers DRM free music and a neat interface, but it’s no iTunes. Also, be sure you have a decent set of headphones handy because the built-in speakers are truly dreadful.

When it comes to books though. Kindle is the king and this device doesn’t let down those long-time Amazon loyalists who have been itching for a colour touchscreen device.

The interface is familiar, just a lot prettier. It’ll be interesting to see whether it can convert those currently keen on e-ink.

Prime members also get access to the Kindle Lending Library, completely free of charge, which allows you to borrow and read one book a month.