Amazon’s October launch of the updated Fire HD 10 tablet will test the budget tablet market. Will people tolerate a significant price hike for better specs? If the launch plays out anything like their Kindle line, my guess is yes. Amazon mimics Apple by maintaining full control of both the hardware and the software, and it works.
Looking Back at The First Fire 10
When the Amazon Fire 10 HD first made its debut in 2015, it immediately stood out in an already crowded market for affordable wifi tablets. It was thin, had expandable memory, and both front and rear facing cameras. It also was, and still is, unbreakable. A good option for kids, both at home and on long trips.
Affordable … But What Are Fire HD’s Compromises?
For less than $200, the latest Fire HD has far fewer meaningful differences from the much more expensive iPad than you might guess. In fact, Fire tablets outperform the iPad in several ways, the most noteworthy of which is that they are virtually shatterproof. Amazon tablets have dimmer screens and lower processing power, but for most basic uses, they deliver a superior value for your hard-earned dollar.
2017: Higher Specs, Higher Price
The new Fire HD 10 is available for pre-order for between $160 and $205, depending on how much memory you want. For the price bump, the new device delivers full HD resolution, more memory, which is expandable up to 256GB, a cleaner, more intuitive UI, and hands-free Alexa capability. With this model, you’ll be able to control your whole house, including Nest thermostats, Nest security cameras, and lights. Rumor has it that Alexa tells funnier jokes than Siri, but we'll leave that up to you to decide.