Published On: Thu, Sep 6th, 2012

Amazon shows off Kindle Fire HD with 4G LTE

Amazon unveiled the successors to its Kindle Fire at a press event today in Santa Monica. The 7-inch version will have twice the RAM of its predecessor, "40 percent faster performance" with a new processor, and longer battery life. The new 8.9-inch version has a 1920x1200 display at 254 pixels per inch and will be available with a 4G LTE option for a significant extra cost.

The 8.9-inch Fire HD measures 8.8 millimeters thick, weighs 20 ounces, and has a laminated display intended to reduce glare from external light by 25 percent. Inside is a dual-core ARM Cortex A9 OMAP4470 processor, dual Dolby Digital stereo speakers, a dual-band WiFi chip, and two antennas for WiFi reception. Amazon claims the Fire's WiFi is 54 percent faster than on the Nexus 7, and 41 percent faster than on the iPad 3.

The 7-inch Fire HD has a 1.2GHz dual-core OMAP 4460 processor and 1280x800 HD display, while the non-HD version has a 1.2GHz OMAP 4430 dual-core processor and 1024x600 resolution.

All Fire models except the non-HD 7-inch Fire will include front-facing cameras, a feature that was entirely lacking in the original Fire. HDMI out and Bluetooth have also been added. Amazon has not yet provided battery estimates for the 8.9-inch Fires, but the new 7-inch HD model is quoted at 11 hours of continuous use.

Amazon saw fit to bestow the WiFi-only Fire HDs with 16GB of storage, more than the pitiful 8GB found on the original Kindle Fire. The bump is crucial for a device meant to display HD content, though 16GB isn't exactly roomy--a 32GB option will also be available. The 8.9-inch 4G LTE version of the Fire HD will have 32GB of storage with a 64GB option.

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