A guide to the new Kindles that Amazon introduced Thursday
Amazon.com founder and CEO Jeff Bezos served as his company’s pitchman Thursday, introducing seven new or upgraded Kindle devices.
But Bezos was a bit confusing with his introductions, so here’s a guide to the new Kindles, their prices, release dates and their most important features.
Kindle Fire HD with 4G LTE - $499 for 32GB and $599 for 64GB - Ships Nov. 20, pre-orders available now
The flagship of the Kindles introduced Thursday was the Kindle Fire HD with 4G LTE. This tablet features an 8.9-inch HD LCD screen with a 1,920 by 1,200 pixel resolution and 254 pixels per inch.
The Kindle Fire HD with 4G LTE comes with dual Dolby Audio speakers, a 1.5Ghz OMAP 4470 processor and two Wi-Fi antennas, which Amazon says gives the device download and streaming speeds 40% faster than the iPad.
And speaking of the iPad, the cheapest version of the Kindle Fire HD with 4G LTE costs the same as the cheapest version of the Apple tablet, but it offers 4G connectivity and 32 GB of storage, which you don’t get from an iPad unless you spend at least $729.
However, to use the Kindle Fire HD’s 4G LTE service you’ll have to pay $49.99 yearly fee. That will get you 250 megabytes of data per month, 20 GB of cloud storage and $10 in credit for the Amazon Appstore.
8.9-inch Kindle Fire HD - $299 for 16GB and $369 for 32GB - Ships Nov. 20, pre-orders available now
This version of the Kindle Fire HD is the same as the 4G LTE version minus the 4G LTE. This version of the 8.9-inch Kindle Fire HD is available with 16 GB but not with 64 GB.
7-inch Kindle Fire HD - $199 for 16GB and $249 for 32GB - Ships Sept. 14, pre-orders available now
The first of the Kindle Fire HDs to ship will be the 7-inch version. This device is essentially the follow-up to the Kindle Fire Amazon released last year, but it features a faster processor. Like the 8.9-inch Kindle Fire HDs, this tablet also includes dual Doly Audio speakers and two Wi-Fi antennas.
Compared to the non-HD 7-inch Kindle Fire (below), this Kindle features a longer-lasting battery, weighs less, is thinner and allows for up to 10 multi-touch points -- the non-HD Kindle Fire only handles two points of multi-touch. The 7-inch Kindle Fire HD also has a significantly better screen, which can play 720p HD videos and has a resolution of 1,280 by 800 pixels.
7-inch Kindle Fire - $159 for 8GB - Ships Sept. 14, pre-orders available now
The original Kindle Fire also received some upgrades Thursday, but it is no longer the favorite child.
The device had its price dropped by about $40 and also received a longer-lasting battery, faster processor and twice as much RAM. However, this Kindle Fire is thicker and weighs more than the 7-inch Kindle Fire HD, and its screen isn’t as good.
Kindle Paperwhite 3G - $179 with ads, $199 without ads - Ships Oct. 1, pre-orders available now
For its e-reader family, Amazon introduced the Kindle Paperwhite 3G. This Kindle offers a higher-resolution screen with higher contrast than its other Kindles. It also has a built-in light, and the device’s battery can last eight weeks with the light on.
Kindle Paperwhite - $119 with ads, $139 without ads - Ships Oct. 1, pre-orders available now
Amazon also announced a non-3G version of the Paperwhite. Besides the lack of 3G support, the only difference between the two devices is that this one weighs 0.3 ounce less.
Latest-generation Kindle - $69.00 - Available now
The only Kindle of the bunch to be available right away is the standard Kindle. Besides a $10 price drop, Amazon gave this Kindle new fonts and 15% faster page turns.
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