Many experts have been claiming that Amazon’s tablet would make it harder for Apple to continue dominating the tablet market. Amazon finally unveiled Kindle Fire tablet yesterday (in addition to a few new Kindles). The device runs a modified version of Android and is more of a media consumption device. Other tablet makers have tried and failed to topple the iPad with their own shiny devices. Kindle Fire is not an iPad killer by any means but it could take marketshare away from everyone (priced at $199).
Non-iPad tablet prices have been dropping slowly but surely in the past few months. Amazon has gone out of its way to generate interest in its device. In the process, it may end up killing or damaging other Android tablet makers’ fortunes. After all, it is highly likely that Amazon is losing money on each Kindle Fire unit it sells:
Amazon appears to be focusing on a product with superior content delivery; the company is leveraging its wide range of content assets available for sale in conjunction with its Cloud Services product for world class, mobile, digital delivery. Apple is also monetizing the hardware upfront with a 30%+ gross margin on the iPad, whereas Amazon is likely losing about $50 per Kindle Fire,
explained Gene Munster of Piper Jaffray. Kindle Fire does not have the firepower to put iPad out of business. But it won’t make Google happy considering that Amazon UI is very much different from the standard Android interface. The introduction of Amazon Silk browser should only encourage more Android fans to give Kindle Fire a try.
The HP TouchPad debacle has shown that people do not mind spending $99 or so on a decent tablet. Kindle Fire costs a bit more but it is still affordable enough to force other tablet makers to get aggressive with their pricing. This device will also push Apple to introduce more premium features in the upcoming iPad devices. Amazon’s new slate may not be the best but it will bring major change to the tablet business, in a good way.
Are you impressed with Kindle Fire?