Kindle in Color: Software Updates since its launch
Since its launch in mid-November, more than 70% of early users have given the Kindle in Color (aka Kindle Fire) a 4-5 rating (out of 5) – an incredibly positive feedback given that this is Amazon’s first tablet to be launched.
So what are the attractive features of this tablet, and more importantly, have any of the drawbacks been addressed?
To see user comments, see: Kindle in Color
Firstly, let’s start with what users liked from the word go …
- Ease of use of the device. Users from young to older age groups have found it simple to use.
- Users like the range of colors and the clarity of images on the screen. Similar to other Kindle readers, there was little or no glare off the screen despite the overlay used on color screens.
- Free cloud storage up to 5GB. Users do not have to worry about backing up their media for the 1st 5GB. This is sufficient to hold a lifetime of books.
- There is a one-month free access to Amazon Prime membership . Users can have unlimited viewing of movies, and additionally, if they have a Kindle ereader, they can borrow books for free.
- Most users like the portability of this nifty 7’ inch tablet. They can easily carry it in their hangbags.
However the first group of users experienced some drawbacks, namely:
- The slow touchscreen reaction
- The slow system speed, eg: slower page-turns.
- Apps on the carousel – all apps downloaded being displayed on the homepage.
However, these issues were resolved very quickly with an over-the-air software update in response to the early users’ feedback. The feedback from users in relation to the first 2 issues are much better now. As for the apps being displayed on the carousal, users can now hide them so they do not show up on the homepage.
There are however, 2 other hardware related items which are unlikely to go away in the near future. Perhaps this is where we start making the distinction between users who prefer the Kindle vs the ipad.
- Screen size for video viewing – For watching movies, some users find the 7’ Kindle screen somewhat small , and prefer larger 10’-sized screens.
In fact, if watching movies on the tablet is an important factor for acquiring a tablet, it may be better to hold off until a larger screen is available with Amazon, or choose another tablet.
- No HDMI – Following on the same note, any movies watched on the Kindle in Color cannot be transferred to an ordinary TV, unless there is a TV that has the capability for Amazon Instant Video streaming. Mind you, there are over 200 models of TVs which carry this capability.
However, it is worth pointing out that the access to movies through Amazon Prime membership allows users to watch movies akin to renting them – except that they are free. It is not the aim to sell them for building a movie library. However, if this is one of your primary needs, then you can either:
a) Upgrade to a higher cloud storage service (above the free 5GB)to store your movies, or
b) Check if your TV allows for Amazon Instant Video streaming to store them offline.
Apart from the hardware issues which Amazon cannot upgrade until possibly a future release, it is reassuring to note that they have been very responsive to making software enhancements promptly without disrupting user experience. Being with a customer-focussed company with a strong software team at its disposal is one of the reasons many choose to buy the Kindle in Color from Amazon.
To find out more, see: Kindle in Color
Filed under: Kindle in Color