Curious about the low-cost Amazon Kindle Fire Android tablet? If you’re patient, you might be able to snag a refurbished unit for between $139 and $169 at Amazon. The company introduced the Fire at the end of 2011 at the loss-leader price point of $199, though it’s rumored to cost about $210 to build. So at $139-169, you’d be getting the Android-powered tablet at well below cost.
|Note: Refurbished Kindle Fire availability and pricing vary, so check Amazon’s listing from time to time by clicking the refurb link provided below.|
As evidenced by the tablet’s promotional page, the new high-end Kindle family member is squarely aimed at proliferating Amazon’s large and growing purchasable and pay-per-view multimedia and other content, said to include “18 million movies, TV shows, apps, games, songs, books, newspapers, audiobooks, magazines, and docs.” This, of course, helps explain the device’s loss-leader pricing.
Amazon’s 7-inch Kindle Fire tablet
(click thumbnails to enlarge)
The Kindle Fire is clearly a highly optimized device — no doubt a necessity in hitting its aggressively-low price point.
It runs a customized Android OS, and includes “split browser” technology that accelerates website rendering through the judicious use of service-side coprocessing (more about that feature below). Thankfully the device supports Adobe Flash, eliminating a common complaint about Apple’s iPad.
On the downside, there’s currently no Kindle Fire model with built-in cellular wireless, thereby limiting its use to cached content when it’s out-of-range of a usable WiFi signal.
Additionally, the device lacks microphone, camera, and Bluetooth functions, and forgoes the usual physical rocker-style volume control in favor of an on-screen volume slider. So, you can’t make Skype voice calls or record voice memos, and it’s also not possible to use an external Bluetooth keyboard for more convenient text entry.
Here’s a link that may still point to the $139 refurbished Amazon deal:
Refurbished Kindle Fire at Amazon
(while supplies last)
Oh, and they’re being sold along with a full warranty.
So here’s our 3-step Kindle Fire Plan: