Welcome to The CITE -- a blog on Course materials, Innovation, and Technology in Education, created by Mark Nelson and now part of the Publications Department of the National Association of College Stores. CITE is a pun with multiple meanings - referring to cite as in citation, something people reference; site as in location, website, or place people go to; and sight as in foresight or looking ahead to what is coming. Comments, discussion, feedback and ideas are welcome.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Amazon Tablet Announced

In the most recent iteration of the device wars, today Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced the release of Amazon Kindle Fire.  The Android-based tablet weighs 14.6 ounces and features a 7-inch screen and will retail for $199.  The new Kindle Fire will be ready to ship on November 15.

Kindle Fire uses Amazon’s proprietary cloud-based and syncing technologies that would allow all content to be backed up on Amazon’s cloud storage.  Additionally, Kindle Fire uses Whipersync technology that allows for automatic, wireless syncing that does not require any plug-ins to computers.  Mobile browsing is capable using Amazon’s own Silk browser that will allow for faster page loading and supports Adobe® Flash® Player.  Perhaps the only surprise is that Amazon moved off at least one proprietary element by using the Android operating system.

In at least some of the early press, the Amazon Tablet was viewed as "No iPad Killer."  Instead some industry analysts believe it is going to be a “poor” technology and will only be a "stopgap" in order to get a tablet out the door for the 2011 holiday season.  The opinion is attributed to the fact that the tablet uses a slower processor and using a failed Playbook hardware platform.

Regardless, it will be interesting to see what features Amazon builds into the tablet, particularly given the comnpany's conitinuing interest in the digital textbook market. 

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