back to article Amazon reveals $50 Android-ish Fire tablet it will axe in two years

Amazon has pumped out its latest attempt to stake a claim in the luggable electronics market with a $50 tablet. The retail giant said its new seven-inch Fire tablet will sport a 1.3Ghz quad-core processor – most likely ARM compatible – with 8GB of storage (and a microSD slot), a 1024 x 600 resolution touchscreen, and a seven- …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Bought one today, with the delivery address as my local Waste and Recycling Centre, c/o Viridor.

    May as well go straight to land-fill.

  2. Dan 55 Silver badge
    Megaphone

    If someone hacks CyanogenMod onto it then I might consider it.

  3. Haku
    Thumb Down

    US=$49.99, UK=£49.99

    Thanks Amazon.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: US=$49.99, UK=£49.99

      You must be new here. The $1==£1 pricing by US Companies in the UK has been going on to my knowledge for at least 40 years.

      The US computer maker that I worked for had to change its pricng at one point because BT threatened to buy all its kit from us through its US subsidiary. Before that our pricing was close to 1:1

      1. Haku

        Re: US=$49.99, UK=£49.99

        I'm not new here, I'm just exercising my birthright as a Brit to complain, sarcastically.

      2. Down not across Silver badge

        Re: US=$49.99, UK=£49.99

        And as has been many times calculated on this forum once you take into account such things as UK price being inclusive of VAT, and US price excluding (for most states at least) things like sales tax the price difference is not quite as much a rip-off as it might seem at first glance.

        1. Spanky_McPherson

          Re: US=$49.99, UK=£49.99

          Er, no. $49.99 is very different from £49.99.

          Ex-VAT, the UK price is £41.66. This is the number we are comparing. According to google that is $64.97.

          So it *is* a significant rip-off.

    2. Bluto Nash

      Re: US=$49.99, UK=£49.99

      Same as it ever was.

  4. JDX Gold badge

    Amazon Underground

    What now?

    Who on earth buys 6 family-focused tablets? A well-off Catholic?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Amazon Underground

      > 6 family-focused tablets? A well-off Catholic?

      All together now: "# every sperm is sacred "..

    2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: Amazon Underground

      I could see a company spending $500 on a dozen of the things as give-aways for a corporate function or customer door prizes.

      1. Danny 14

        Re: Amazon Underground

        I'd prefer £49.99 worth of beer and pizza to be honest.

  5. Alan Denman
    Meh

    Buy 5 for £250...

    pin the together and you have + sign 5 way tasking.

    Real apps too, not service apps!

    Patent is as the +Pro Amazon

  6. CJatCTi

    Its fine as an entry level machine

    With 1.3Ghz & 1Gb RAM it all you need. But have you seen the top apps list (on the side of the amazon.co.uk page).

    Just now they where:

    2 iPlayer

    4 Netflix

    5 ITV player

    Good Luck in selling content to them.

    1. Buzzword

      Re: Its fine as an entry level machine

      #4 in that list is for paid content. Amazon would dearly like you to switch from Netflix to their Amazon Prime Video Instant Video Streaming (or whatever it's called today).

      1. Danny 14

        Re: Its fine as an entry level machine

        The specs are shite for a modern tablet. My ancient galaxy tab 2 isn't the most sprightly tablet in the world with not too dissimilar specs.

  7. mrtom84

    Just ordered it.

    If it's rubbish I plan to try hacking around with it. At that price point, if it ends up in a drawer/bin/charity shop after a week I won't be too upset.

  8. P.B. Lecavalier
    Coffee/keyboard

    "incredibly durable"

    "The all-new Fire features a quad-core processor, is incredibly durable"

    Durable? Incredibly durable?? Excuse me if I'm just **extremely** skeptical of that claim from the salesrep. To achieve such a low cost, I doubt that you get anything but a strong plastic feel out of it.

    As for the inside, you are on amazon's spin of Android. Will they provide FireOS updates for this device? Will that FireOS in itself be a durable thing and updated? Unknown!

    Ok, I got it. It _is_ "incredibly durable", when referring to your enslavement to a single supplier of content.

  9. Charles 9 Silver badge

    And what kinds of extras will these tablets contain? Will they have things like GPSand Bluetooth for two things?

    1. phuzz Silver badge
      Headmaster

      You could have spent the same amount of time as it took to write your comment to look at the specs for yourself, but I'll save you the bother.

      No and No.

  10. TheProf Silver badge

    You what?

    "....a dirt-cheap phone."

    I must have missed that. I recall the incredibly overpriced model with the '3D' effect screen that no-one wanted.

  11. Snowy

    Hate when you quote the phone price and forget the contract price!!

    Just as Apple was gearing up to roll out a new iPhone, Amazon quietly announced it would no longer produce its Fire Phone, the handset it first introduced in 2014 and later cut to a price of just 99 cents with a two-year contract.

    There fixed it for you

  12. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

    An honest question

    If I'm looking for a tablet to read PDF-format magazines (IEEE digital library, for example), browse the web, read email, and maybe watch an occasional film, is one of the new larger Fire tablets, 8" or 10", an adequate choice? I have a Kindle for books, but like this £50 one it's too small to read magazines on. Amazon pricing seems fair for a run-of-the-mill tablet, presumably on the assumption that I'll buy their content, which I probably wont.

    1. bob, mon!
      Linux

      Re: An honest question

      <uninformed-opinion>I have an older Kindle Fire that was used almost exclusively for reading. It's very good for that, but my Kindle is even better (for books that don't use color/colour).

      If you expect your PDF's to include color (ah, t'hell wit'it) then I expect a larger Fire would be great; in fact I might think about doing that myself... except I don't read many PDF's. Or if you just need a larger format than the Kindles offer.

      </uninformed-opinion>

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: An honest question

        Magazines, music score sheets and other documents are typically A4 size.

        A4 measures 210 × 297 millimeters or 8.27 × 11.69 inches.

        Any less than than this is a degradation, and depending on your age, significantly harder to read.

  13. Simon Ward

    No root?

    No thanks.

    If someone can get Cyanogen or similar running on it then I might consider it - it's cheap enough that I can chuck it in my frame bag for cycling trips but not lose too much sleep if it gets damaged. Until then, I'll pass.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: No root?

      at this price point, rooting is inevitable and I bet we will see some interesting ideas. Oh, and some ground-breaking (metaphorically) too. Combine it with a drone, for example, and what do you get? A 6-inch screen hovering in a halo of razor blade, for about 20 sec.

      but some projects will be useful and replicable, looks like Amazon have finally contributed something to the progress of the human race.

  14. James 51

    I bought my kid the kid's tablet for last Christmas and it is dire. If it's possible to store downloaded video from amazon and the iplayer on the sd card I might take a punt on the £50 tablet. Otherwise I'll stick with my playbook (or just buy a Z30 and stick the micro sd card in it and it should allow me to do everything the tablet can and a lot more although it is just over three times the price).

  15. Bluto Nash

    Can it be rooted?

    or can it be made to use the Google Play store? I just want to use one out in my shop to do quick lookups, PDF viewing and act as a streaming music player. Bluetooth would be a plus, and Cyanogen - as mentioned by others - would be a deal maker for this thing. I don't have high expectations, so they should be easily exceeded, as it'll likely be replacing my arthritic Viewsonic gTab running VEGAn-TAB.

  16. Sporkinum

    The HD tablets are HD, for small values of HD. Fire HD 1280x800 vs my 2 year old nook HD+ at 1920x1280.

    1. MondoMan

      The varieties of Fire:

      The "HD" versions are the lower spec models. The higher-spec models are "HDX" -- these come in LTE data/GPS-containing versions as well as WiFi only, and have nicer screens and other specs, including 2GB RAM. The 7" Fire HDX has a 1200x1920 display, quad-core 2.2 GHz Snapdragon 800, etc. The 8.9" Fire HDX has a 1600x2560 display, Snapdragon 805 at 2.5 GHz, etc.

  17. martinusher Silver badge

    About the right price

    If you go to a site like Gearbest.com you'll see lots of tablets for this kind of price. The unit will be basic, it won't have a super-large or super-high resolution screen but it will work.

    Consider the alternative. The Los Angeles Unified School District wanted to give tablets to all of its students and being clueless went for a previous generation iPad. They were being caught $700+ per unit. You don't give that kind of unit to kids. $50 is more like it. (The LAUSD project fell apart before they could spend the entire $1Billion on the things. Fortunately.)

  18. Mark Wilson

    Not bad at that price but...

    It really is worth shopping around, I picked up a 7" Acer with 32GB of storage, a 32BG microSD card and a case, all of that came to approx £60. Sure it won't set the world alight with its performance but for browsing the Internet, checking emails and listening to music it does just great and that 32GB SD stores a lot of music and as a pleasant surprise it isn't so far from stock Android when compared to Samsung, Sony, Amazon etc...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Not bad at that price but...

      From personal experience, that Acer will stop recognising the "2" and "&" on the virtual keyboard about 2 days after the one year warranty expires. (hard resets and factory restores dont fix it).

      The Acer is pretty solid though, I threw mine the length of the house - it bounce off of a wall and bounced down the stairs onto the tile floor; even with the screen smashed and the case in pieces, it still worked!!!! (although not the "2" or "&").

      The Asus MemoPad is pretty tough, my daughter did manage to damage it - dropping it from a shopping trolley onto a brick carpark surface damaged the SD slot. Even then, it might have been OK if there wasnt a SD card in there, the impact caused the case to pop open slightly and the card was forced upwards, breaking the eject mech and snapping some of the slots contacts on the mother board. Other than that, it still works perfectly.

      1. handle

        Re: Not bad at that price but...

        A touch-screen keyboard developing faulty keys? That's quite surreal!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Not bad at that price but...

          "handle

          A touch-screen keyboard developing faulty keys? That's quite surreal!"

          I tried it in landscape and portrait mode, in case it was a screen fault, but the same two keys refused to work, so what can I say.

          1. Danny 14

            Re: Not bad at that price but...

            try swiftkey? Or a different keyboard app?

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Good for the kids, full cost is cheaper than getting a broken Ipad screen repaired.

    1. handle

      Given the number of adults complaining about broken iPad screens, looks like it's good for them too.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    all we need is simple instructions

    how to remove the amazon stuff and turn it into something useful, I dunno, fridge magnet? Fly / wife / plod detector? Kitchen scales? E-door stopper perhaps.

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