As a Kindle user, I’m so excited to see the announcement of Kindle Fire, Amazon’s latest 7″ multi-touch color tablet. It is slim, ultralight and most importantly, give users a shortcut to the cloud at anytime and anywhere. The best of all, Kindle Fire is only $199, a truly bargain price for an Android tablet.
Amazon Silk: A Cloud-accelerated Browser on Kindle Fire
The most impressive thing about Kindle Fire is Amazon Silk, the built-in browser of this tablet. Amazon claims that Silk is much faster than other browsers due to the support of the cloud.
Every time there is a page request Silk determines what tasks to be handled by the tablet and what data to be processed by the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) server, taking into consideration factors such as network status and page complexity. And Amazon said that they had peered with major internet service providers and top web sites, so many of the web pages you browse actually has a cached copy on Amazon’s server. This shortens the loading time of web pages.
Besides, Amazon’s server learns from billions of web sites so that it can push associated content to the tablet, without having to wait until the whole page has been loaded to determine what to download. This again accelerates the whole loading process.
This is not the first time we see similar technologies. For example, SKyFire is a browser that converts flash content into iPhone compatible format before pushing the content to iPhone, to make iPhone “flash-enabled”. This is a clever design because the iPhone hardware may be incapable to process the data.
Watch this video for an in-depth (5 mins+) explanation of Silk:
Amazon Content with Free Cloud Storage
Kindle Fire fully utilizes the rich content pool of Amazon (the existing Instant Video and MP3). There are over 100,000 movies and TV shows and 17 million songs users can enjoy on Kindle Fire. Besides, Amazon released color digital publications including magazines, books and children books.
The huge collection of content is stored on Amazon’s server for free, meaning that users can “buy” the contents without having to spent any local disk space for storage. Only when needed the contents are streamed or downloaded to the tablet.
Again, this is not a completely new concept. Since the first generation Kindle, Amazon keeps all books I bought online, I can delete the local copy and re-download at anytime. Now Amazon pushes this forward to all other multimedia content.
And with the Whispersync technology, Amazon keeps track of your reading and watching progress. If you finished playing 25 minutes of a TV show, when you switch on Kindle Fire, it plays from the 26th minute onward. This is a truly remarkable design that brings convenience to users.
Summary: The Cloud on Hand
Cloud High Club is not a gadget blog, I’ll leave the many other attractive features of Kindle Fire to you to explore on Amazon. I simply want to point out that Amazon truly “invented” a product that effectively integrates the cloud with a tablet. Not to mention the rich multimedia content that Amazon brings.
Why? Although there are many tablets (iOS and Android) out there, that all “connect” to the internet. On the other hand, I have the impression that Kindle Fire is built to “utilize” the net. It’s like a simple terminal that delivers the best of the internet contents to users. To a certain extent this matches the belief behind Chromebooks. And Kindle Fire is slim (0/45″ or 11.4mm thick) and light (14.6 ounces or 413 grams). It truly makes the cloud portable while enjoyable.
If you are a heavy web user who enjoys watching and listening to multimedia content, reading books and games, Kindle Fire is a must-have tablet. Of course, it’s not a truly Android tablet, since the OS is custom-tweaked to run Amazon Apps only. Perhaps users would soon find out that Fire could be “androidized” as easily as for Nook. But even running the stock OS, I could see huge potential of Kindle Fire being a killer cloud-centric tablet.
Buy one or check out more at ==> Amazon