This week in Amazon tablet rumors.
It seemed almost every day this past week we had new rumors about the still unofficial Amazon line of tablets. While most of these rumors were nothing new, there were a few new tidbits that surfaced. But as we said, this is all still unofficial. Amazon has made no real announcements about any upcoming Android based tablets. They are still chugging along with their Kindle eBook readers.
Amazon has built their line of Android apps, and their own Android app market. With their suite of apps it could be a natural transition for them to offer a tablet. The big question will be if they will offer a stock Android 3.x (Honeycomb) experience, or a complete UI overlay emphasizing the Amazon brand? Lets break down the current rumors of the week.
1. The first Amazon tablet will be out by October – This rumor has ranged from August until October. Previous reports had said it would for sure be out in Q3 of 2011. This would be by the end of September.
2. Foxconn will be making the Amazon tablet – Foxconn is also the manufactures of the iPad. We know they produce good quality work, so this could be good if it’s true.
3. Amazon’s tablet will be 9″, no wait it will be 10.1″ – We have heard everything from 7″ to 10.1″ for the Amazon tablet. This most likely is because their will be more then one tablet. What is not known is what their largest tablet will be. Also, will it be 16:10 like most Android tablets, or 4:3 like the iPad. One would assume that Amazon being mostly known for their Kindle would put out a device that is more reader friendly, that being a 4:3 format.
4. Amazon will be shipping around 800k units a month – This would put Amazon’s offering second only to the iPad. No other Android tablet is selling this many tablets right now. Obviously this is what Amazon would like, but just because they produce that many tablets a month doesn’t mean people will buy them. Can Amazon do what Motorola, Samsung, Acer, and ASUS could not?
5. The Amazon tablet will use E Ink’s Fringe Field Switching LCD technology – We are still unsure if Amazon will release a tablet that will still emphasize eBooks. With the success of their Kindle line one would assume that this would natural transition. The NOOKcolor by B&N has done very well focusing on eBooks even though its a capable Android tablet. Using a technology that would offer comfortable black & white eReading and also normal LCD color could be a huge success. Reports have stated that this type of technology is not ready for prime time. The only tablet to offer this now is the NotionINK Adam, and reports have not been great about quality of it’s screen. At one time it was rumored that the Amazon tablet would use the same Pixel Qi screen that the NotionINK Adam does.
6. The Amazon tablet will not have a camera, or yes it will – We heard both this week. One would hope that the tablet at least will have a front-facing camera for Video chat. People have criticized the HP TouchPad for not also having a rear camera. At this point everything is compared to the iPad. The iPad has dual-cameras, so every tablet is excepted to have the same. However, if Amazon is going to price these tablets aggressively, I think less people would miss cameras for a tablet that cost less then $399.