Amazon lights things up with new Kindle Fire

The iPad is getting some new competition.

As expected, Amazon today introduced a new Kindle tablet, this one dubbed the Kindle Fire HD. According to CNET, which is reporting live from Santa Monica, the new device has a 1900 x 1200, 8.9-inch screen and 16 gigabytes of storage. It will cost $300 and will ship on Nov. 20.

That price is $100 more expensive than the original Kindle Fire, which debuted last year. But the screen is significantly larger and the device has double the storage space.

Amazon is also offering a version of the Kindle Fire HD that has 32 gigabytes of storage that will connect to the wireless carriers 4G LTE networks for $500. Better yet, the company announced that owners of the new device can get a year’s worth of wireless access for it for $50. (The downside of the offer is that user can only transfer 250 megabytes per month; no word yet on the overage charges.)

One cool feature that Amazon announced for the new Kindle Fire was something called “FreeTime,” which will allow parents to set limits on the amount of time kids can spend on the device doing particular activities — such as playing games. Given how obsessed my kids are with playing with my wife’s iPad, that would be a great feature in our house!

I liked the Kindle Fire, particularly for its size and the wide range of content — movies, music and television shows — that users could access through it. I’m excited to test out the new version.


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