OK…so the Kindle Fire arrived yesterday. In a nutshell:

  • Feels great in your hand (heavier than you’d imagine, but it feels solid)
  • Screen is delightful, very good colors
  • Interface is pretty intuitive…my iPad trained kids pretty much at home. The carousel is likely to get wearisome if you switch apps, book s and movies a lot
  • The performance is pretty good…there are some stutters and lags, but nothing objectionable.
  • My kids prefer the backlit screen to the e-Ink for reading…they all said it was easier. (I am agnostic here…but they are heavy readers.)
  • Gaming – While perhaps not in the same upper echelon with and iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad, Angry Birds, Plants vs Zombies and Fruit Ninja performed beautifully and we lauded by the new owners as “awesome”.
  • Pandora and Netflix performed perfectly.
  • We are Amazon Prime members, so the free streaming stuff is great, and works just beautifully.
  • Over the years, we’ve bought a handful of music from Amazon, but they didn’t find it in their cloud…not sure if it is Amazon’s issue or mine, or if past purchases count toward their current music streaming services.
It would be delightful if Amazon created an Amazon Cloud interface. I suspect that they will, but that is an omission, albeit not a serious one. at this point.
Long story short…for $199, the Kindle Fire is a fantastic deal. Great feel, good performance, nice screen…hard to beat….
UPDATE: I had a minute so I ran over to Barnes & Noble to check out the new Nook Tablet. It feels pretty much the same as the Fire. And at $249, the human support at 700 B&N Stores may be worth it. And then my travels took me to the Apple store. The iPad 2 is worth all of the extra money…it is sweet and slick and fast and slim…just better in every respect.