Several analysts believe Amazon has an imminent hit on its hands with its upcoming Kindle Fire, a $199 Android-powered tablet that features deep integration with Amazon’s many digital services. While Amazon’s new tablet will be available for just over six weeks in 2011, some analysts think the company could ship as many as 5 million Kindle Fire slates during the holiday quarter. Rapid adoption of that magnitude would certainly make the Fire the fastest-selling Android tablet of all time but according to Barclays Group analyst Ben Reitzes, Apple CEO Tim Cook and CFO Peter Oppenheimer aren’t worried. Read on for more.
Following a meeting with the pair of Apple chief officers, Reitzes delivered a note to investors suggesting that the company sees Amazon’s forthcoming tablet as good news for the iPad. The Kindle Fire’s low price point makes it accessible, but Apple believes it further fragments the Android ecosystem, which may cause consumers to flee to the iPad.
“While the pricing at $199 looks disruptive for what seems to be the iPad’s most important rising challenge, the Amazon Fire – it is important to note that it could fuel further fragmentation in the tablet market,” Reitzes wrote. “While compatible with Android, the Apps work with Amazon products. The more fragmentation, the better, says Apple, since that could drive more consumers to the stable Apple platform. We believe that Apple will get more aggressive on price with the iPad eventually but not compromise the product quality and experience.”
Amazon will release its Kindle Fire tablet on November 15th, and a second Amazon tablet is expected to launch in the second half of 2012.