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May 17, 2017

The latest Amazon Fire 7 and Fire HD 8 tablets are slimmed down and powered up

by John_A

Why it matters to you

If you’re in the market for a new tablet, you now have a few new color options for the Fire 7 and Fire HD 8 — but that’s about all that’s changed.

Amazon has taken the wraps off of its next generation of Fire tablets, which represent an incremental update to the Fire 7 and Fire HD 8 tablets. The company on Tuesday announced both the “all-new” Fire 7 and Fire HD 8, as well as kids versions of those two tablets — the Fire 7 Kids Edition and the Fire HD 8 Kids Edition.

The Kids Edition versions of the tablets are built to last. According to the company, Because “kids break things,” as the company says, the tablets feature a “kid-proof” case, as well as a two-year warranty that allows parents to send back a broken tablet and get a replacement.

So what sets the new tablets apart from their predecessors? According to Amazon, the new Fire 7 is thinner and lighter, and comes with an “improved 7-inch IPS display.” It also has a better battery life of 8 hours. Very little has changed with the Fire HD 8, but it is available in a few new colors, and Amazon says it’ll offer “faster performance.” If you already have a Fire 7 or Fire HD 8 tablet, you probably won’t need to upgrade to the new one.

Apart from Alexa, Amazon’s digital assistant, the Fire 7 features a 7-inch display along with 8GB or 16GB of storage and a microSD card slot to expand upon that storage. The Fire HD 8 sports an 8-inch widescreen display, along with 16GB or 32GB of storage, and a microSD card slot. The tablets also feature unnamed quad-core 1.3GHz processors.

Perhaps the best thing about the tablets is their price. Amazon has never offered overly expensive tablets, and the Fire 7 starts at $50, while the Fire HD 8 comes in at $80 — matching the price of the previous Fire 7 and Fire HD 8 tablets respectively. Of course, Amazon isn’t aiming to make its money from the hardware — it’s banking on users having Amazon Prime subscriptions and getting their content through Amazon’s services.

To get the stronger and bulkier kids versions of the tablets, you will need to pay a little extra. The Amazon Fire 7 Kids Edition comes in at $100, while the Fire HD 8 Kids Edition will cost $130. Of course, you’re also paying for the extra content — the Kids Edition tablets offer things like educational apps and games. As a parent, you won’t have to worry about your kids doing anything inappropriate on their tablet — the tablets feature FreeTime, Amazon’s parental controls service that helps ensure kids are only browsing through age-appropriate content.

You can get the Amazon Fire 7 for yourself here, or the Fire HD 8 here. If you’re looking for a device for your kids, you can get the Fire 7 Kids Edition here, or the Fire HD 8 Kids Edition here.




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