iPad Killer?

Tablets in all shapes, sizes and price ranges will greet shoppers this holiday season. The iPad currently reigns supreme, but can a more moderately priced, smaller device like the Kindle Fire win over gift-buying consumers?

Absolutely, says consumer electronics review site Retrevo.

The company polled 1,000 people in October on their tablet-buying intentions and found that, of those planning to buy a tablet, 44 percent would consider purchasing the $199 Kindle Fire instead of the iPad 2, which starts at $499. Then again, the same percentage of folks said that they didn’t know enough about the Fire, and 12 percent indicated that they would only buy an iPad.

I'm an original version 1 Kindle early adopter and I have loved it from day one! Even with it's flaws, which are aplenty…

I said when I bought it that it was a game changer. For me and Amazon.

I paid about $350 for it and it came with whispernet; which has worked flawlessly for me since day one. I love this because I can sit on Siesta Key beach reviewing books I'm interested in and downloading samples to check out. Then I can purchase and download the book I want right there; read it for a while and then go jump in the Gulf and cool down.

Aside from being able to buy books on the go and of course carry them all around with me in a small package, there is another less know feature of Kindle that I use regularly and has actually saved me a ton of money.

You see, I'm always doing research online and downloading a ton of content, usually pdfs that I would print out to read later; funny thing is I do not like to sit and read articles or books online. I read what I have to but I much prefer to take information away from the computer in printed form to read. I think a lot of people do.

And I was spending a ton of money on printer toner to do this.

Well along came Kindle and a neat software program called MobiPocket Creator; it can take a pdf or other types of document and package them up to go right on the Kindle and boy how I have used that over the years. Its probably saved me hundreds of dollars in toner!

As for the Kindle Fire; I looked at it and wondered; waited for reviews and opinions to surface. Kindle Fire has got a 4 star rating on Amazon at this time and a lot of mixed reviews. Having been an early adopter of Kindle 1, which was a technological marvel but a pain in the arse to hold :), I think I'm going to wait until Amazon upgrade the software and features.

Some good things to note about Kindle Fire from my perspective;

  • It's running Android – I've already gone Android, don't fight it…
  • Amazon are a fantastic company – what they have done in the cloud is far superior to anyone and boggles the mind; really!
  • Plugs into Amazon content
  • Its not an iPad

Unfortunately the Kindle Fire does not appear to have all the features of a Kindle; probably because it's not actually a new Kindle. So you can't really buy it as a Kindle upgrade. It's a tablet.

Do I need a tablet?

To be honest I don't know what all the fuss is about tablets and particularly the iPad. I've got a Lenovo ThinkPad Tablet, which is a real computer and it's tiny, so I'll stick with that thank you very much and upgrade to a touch screen version sometime in the future.

I don't care for Apple too much; I own an iPod Touch which I like but the iTunes software sucks so bad I would gladly switch if there was a better hardware option available. It amazes me that Apple can produce such fantastic hardware and hobble it with such a crappy piece of software.

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