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Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review

Posted: , by John V.

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Interface and Functionality:

Diehard Amazon followers will surely appreciate how the tablet interfaces with many of the online retailer’s various services, such as Amazon Prime Instant Video and Amazon MP3 Store, but it simply feels clunky in both execution and presentation. In fact, this is the same custom Android experience that’s running on the 7-inch Kindle Fire HD, which is based on Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. Frankly, it’s a tolerable experience to say the least, but there’s no arguing we’d prefer the full experience of Android instead – more so considering it lacks the “with Google” association. Therefore, it’s missing beloved features such as deep personalization, widgets, and the wealth of Google branded apps, lacking the Play Store, Gmail, YouTube, Maps and more.

Diehard Amazon followers will surely appreciate how the tablet interfaces with many of the online retailer’s various services - Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review
Diehard Amazon followers will surely appreciate how the tablet interfaces with many of the online retailer’s various services - Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review
Diehard Amazon followers will surely appreciate how the tablet interfaces with many of the online retailer’s various services - Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review
Diehard Amazon followers will surely appreciate how the tablet interfaces with many of the online retailer’s various services - Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review
Diehard Amazon followers will surely appreciate how the tablet interfaces with many of the online retailer’s various services - Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review
Diehard Amazon followers will surely appreciate how the tablet interfaces with many of the online retailer’s various services - Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review
Diehard Amazon followers will surely appreciate how the tablet interfaces with many of the online retailer’s various services - Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review
Diehard Amazon followers will surely appreciate how the tablet interfaces with many of the online retailer’s various services - Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review

Diehard Amazon followers will surely appreciate how the tablet interfaces with many of the online retailer’s various services


Although it’s basic to the bones, the Kindle Fire HD 8.9 offers us some usable organizer apps, which aren’t sporting the best tablet-optimized layouts we’ve seen. Additionally, the email experience is a dull one too, since it’s rather elementary in functionality and presentation when compared to the rich and extensiveness attached with Android’s usual Gmail experience.

Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review
Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review
Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review
Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review

Sad to say, but for a fuller-sized tablet, it’s actually worse to type in landscape – primarily because its layout is more akin to a stretched out version of a smartphone keyboard. Conversely, it’s somewhat better with portrait usage, but some people will probably opt to use the split-style option for better comfort. For the most part, it exhibits a smooth response, but sometimes it’s marred by some sluggish movements.

The keyboard is actually worse to type in landscape - Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review
The keyboard is actually worse to type in landscape - Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review
The keyboard is actually worse to type in landscape - Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review
The keyboard is actually worse to type in landscape - Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review

The keyboard is actually worse to type in landscape



Processor and Memory:

Now don’t think for a moment that this is going to be getting a vastly superior processor over the 7-inch Kindle Fire HD. Rather, it’s sporting a hairline better dual-core ARM-based 1.7GHz TI OMAP4470 chip with 1GB of RAM. Generally speaking, its performance is consistent with its acceptable results, but it’s lacking the fluid operations and tight feel that some of the quad-core packing devices out there offer. Moreover, there are moments when we see some delayed responses with its actions – though, it’s never to the point infuriating. Certainly it’s no powerhouse!

It could’ve been worse, but it’s nice to know that the Wi-Fi only Kindle Fire HD 8.9 is available in 16GB and 32GB capacities. However, you’ll need to choose wisely seeing that there’s no storage expandability with it whatsoever. If you opt for the LTE connected versions, you can choose from the 32GB or 64GB options.


Internet and Connectivity:

Relying on the familiar Silk browser, which adds some speed to page loads by coughing up some server-side processing, it gets the job done – with one blemish though. On one hand, the display’s high resolution and brilliant looks make web sites pop and come alive. And when it comes to page loads, it’s no doubt pretty quick in executing it. However, there are delays with rendering on the fly – such as scrolling very quickly. Yeah, some of us might not be bothered by it, but it clearly stands out.

Browsing the web with Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9's Silk browser - Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review
Browsing the web with Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9's Silk browser - Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review
Browsing the web with Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9's Silk browser - Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review
Browsing the web with Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9's Silk browser - Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9 Review

Browsing the web with Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9's Silk browser


Obviously, the Kindle Fire HD 8.9 is available in Wi-Fi only form, but in addition to that, there’s also a 4G LTE connected variant that runs off AT&T’s network only. Similar to its contemporaries, it packs most of the usual connectivity features we expect to find – such as Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. With the latter, it’s specifically a 5GHz dual-antenna MIMO Wi-Fi antenna, which maintains a solid connection at all times.

5 Comments
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posted on 10 Dec 2012, 09:19 4

1. Slammer (Posts: 929; Member since: 03 Jun 2010)


I guess I can live with an 8 for rating. However, I give it a 9.5 and a 10. 9.5 just for the sheer value of the product. The extra .5 goes for the benefits. My wife loves this thing. And if she's happy, I'm happy. Because if she ain't happy, I get nothin'.

John B.

posted on 10 Dec 2012, 09:23 1

2. Commentator (Posts: 2293; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)


Awwwwwwwwww!

posted on 10 Dec 2012, 23:21

4. aayupanday (Posts: 454; Member since: 28 Jun 2012)


Dwayne "THE ROCK" Johnson would say - "It doesn't matter if you're happy!!!"

posted on 10 Dec 2012, 19:01 1

3. MC1123 (Posts: 1229; Member since: 12 Nov 2012)


i really wish that john v will make all the review and video review!!! its fun and with real review and comparison!!!

thew reviewers that i like--john V or phonearenena and lisa of mobiletechreview!

posted on 01 Jan 2013, 12:46

5. JJ111985 (Posts: 3; Member since: 01 Jan 2013)


I picked up a Kindle Fire HD recently and I'm really loving it. The versatility and user friendliness that it offers is great. Here the ones I have on Amazon amzn.to/UBAU84. If you're looking for a tablet you should check it out.

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Display8.9 inches, 1920 x 1200 pixels (254 ppi) IPS LCD
Hardware
TI OMAP4470, Dual core, 1500 MHz, ARM Cortex-A9 processor
1024 MB RAM
Size9.4 x 6.4 x 0.35 inches
(240 x 164 x 8.8 mm)
20 oz  (567 g)

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