We already know everything there is to know about Amazon’s next-generation Kindle Fire HD tablets. BGR exclusively detailed both the 7-inch and 8.9-inch models early last month and then exclusively published both devices’ full specs in a subsequent report. Now that the tablets are nearing launch however, benchmark test results from the 8.9-inch model have leaked for the first time. Nothing new can be gleaned from the test results, but they do support several of the key specs we’ve already covered: a 2,560 x 1,600-pixel display, Adreno 330 graphics (from the Snapdragon 800 MSM8974 processor), a clockspeed in excess of 2GHz and Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean. The new Kindle Fire and Kindle Fire HD tablets are expected to be unveiled as soon as next month, and an image showing the benchmark test results follows below. More →
Amazon is still hard at work on an own-brand smartphone, according to BGR’s sources. While the handset is expected to be based on a heavily customized version of Android just like Amazon’s Kindle Fire tablets, the company has seemingly been all too eager to get Windows Phone experts on board. First, former Microsoft executive Charlie Kindel joined Amazon back in April, and now Nokia’s head of developer experience Marco Argenti has confirmed on Twitter that he has left Nokia and joined the Web services team at Amazon. “Its been an exciting ride at Nokia, glad [to] have been part of and wishing great success [for] the future. Looking [forward] to a new chapter at AWS,” Argenti wrote. Argenti may be working closely with Kindel, who has been charged with building a new team within Amazon’s Web services arm that will focus on mobile products.
Just how much money does Amazon generate from selling its Kindle eReaders and tablets? It’s tough to say because Amazon never releases specific sales figures for its devices. AllThingsD points us to new research from Morgan Stanley that estimates Amazon will sell $4.5 billion worth of Kindle-branded devices this year, a 26% increase from 2012. The Morgan Stanley researchers also think that Kindle sales will total $5 billion next year and $5.5 billion in 2015. Amazon will release the next generation of its 7-inch Kindle Fire this fall and its specs will include a 1,920 x 1,200-pixel display, a 1.5GHz dual-core Texas Instruments OMAP4 4470 processor with PowerVR SGX544 graphics, 1GB of RAM and Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean. Second-generation Kindle Fire HD tablets are also in the works, and they feature some of the most impressive tablet specs we have ever seen.
Amazon is preparing to launch brand new Kindle Fire HD tablets in the coming months and BGR has detailed them fully in a pair of exclusive reports. The second-generation Kindle Fire HD models will feature an all-new exterior design, as well as a complete internal overhaul with cutting-edge specs that outclass every comparable tablet on the market today. With the new slates’ fall launch approaching, Amazon has slashed the base price of the current-generation Kindle Fire HD to just $159 in a likely move to clear inventory. The new price is in line with Amazon’s entry-level Kindle Fire, and the company noted that it will only be available for a limited time.
Amazon’s high-definition Kindle Fire HD tablets stole the spotlight last fall, but the company’s entry-level Kindle Fire might have been the real star of the show. At just $159, Amazon’s tiny tablet continued the company’s original tablet strategy and steered clear of Apple’s iPad in favor of affordability and mass-market appeal. The second-generation Kindle Fire was better, faster and cheaper than the original model but it was still a bit buggy and left plenty of room for improvement. Fortunately, big improvements are exactly what we can expect from Amazon’s third-generation Kindle Fire model set to debut this coming fall. More →
Amazon is reportedly working to launch an own-brand video game console powered by Android that will launch by the end of the year, possibly before Black Friday. The rumor comes from Game Informer, which cites multiple unnamed sources. The site’s report states that Amazon’s upcoming console will play games already available in the Kindle Fire’s Amazon Appstore to ensure that a wide range of titles is available at launch. The company is also said to be developing its own dedicated gaming controller for the console, though no details about the controller were provided. Such a device would be the fourth piece of hardware Amazon plans to launch this year — the online retail giant is also prepping three new Kindle Fire tablets, all of which have been exclusively detailed by BGR.
Amazon’s first-generation Kindle Fire was absolutely not an iPad killer, and that’s exactly why it was so successful. The online retail giant sought not to compete with Apple’s juggernaut but rather to open a new door, one that would focus on a more compact design and far more affordable pricing. At $499, the iPad was a tremendous value. At $199, the Kindle Fire was a steal. But the Kindle Fire was just the beginning and affordability alone would only take Amazon so far. The company’s current Kindle Fire HD models were the result of that realization, though they were merely the tip of the iceberg. With its next-generation Kindle Fire HD tablets that are set to debut this fall, Amazon is taking things to a completely different level — and its rivals should be worried. More →
Amazon has never given granular detail about its business, preferring to keep investors, analysts and the media as far away as possible from knowing the ins and outs of its operations. For investors and analysts alike, that’s okay. The Seattle-based retailer missed Wall Street expectations, losing 2 cents a share on $15.7 billion in revenue during the June quarter. Analysts were looking for Amazon to earn 5 cents a share on $15.73 billion in revenue. But despite the miss and the below revenue guidance, Jefferies analyst Brian Pitz raised his price target on Amazon to $350, citing operating income and consolidated segment operating income (CSOI) margins being better-than-expected. “This is now the 7th straight quarter operating income has exceeded the high end of guidance, despite continuing investments,” Pitz wrote in the note. More →
Netflix’s share price almost hit a giddy $26o on Friday as it became clear that Hulu was not going to be acquired by DirectTV or Time Warner. The company’s market cap is now nearing $15 billion, driven by what is widely regarded as a deeply irrational investor mania. But is Wall Street’s infatuation sheer lunacy? At the moment, Netflix is miles ahead of the other streaming video rivals when it comes to creating original content. Its latest show, “Orange is the New Black,” may be a quirky niche item, but it has topped 80% on Metacritic and is garnering some rave reviews from influential media mavens. Netflix is putting together a roster of ambitious high-profile shows that appeal to very distinct demographic niches. “Orange” is designed to basically grab the “Weeds” demo of 30 to 50-year-old professional women, “House of Cards’ ” audience’s average household income likely tops $100,000, and the upcoming Dreamworks animations are going to be catnip for families with kids under 8 years old. More →
Apple and Amazon have agreed to end their trademark dispute over the right to use the term “app store.” U.S. District Judge Phyllis Hamilton on Tuesday ordered that the entire case be dismissed at the request of both companies. Reuters reported that the dismissal came after Apple and Amazon agreed not to sue or file counterclaims against each other. Apple filed the original complaint last year against Amazon, claiming the company’s “Amazon Appstore” infringed upon its trademark. Amazon argued that the term “app store” is generic and Apple’s claims were baseless. The case was partially dismissed earlier this year when a judge ruled that Apple could not bring a false advertising claim against Amazon.
Amazon is planning a complete overhaul of its Kindle Fire tablet lineup for 2013 and BGR has learned exclusive details about the forthcoming devices. As the first company to put a significant dent in Apple’s tablet market share following the iPad’s debut, expectations are always high when Amazon prepares to launch new hardware. Kindle slates are still the second most desired tablet series behind Apple’s iPad lineup according to one study, and while Samsung passed Amazon last year to steal the No.2 spot in terms of global tablet shipment volume, Samsung is stumbling right now and its new tablets are anything but impressive. As Amazon’s top bookselling rival backs away from tablet hardware and clears some extra space for Amazon to thrive, CEO Jeff Bezos and his team will look to push ahead with brand new devices set to debut in the coming months. More →
Fortune on Monday released its most recent rankings of worldwide companies based on revenue in their fiscal years ended on or before March 31st, 2013. Samsung topped Apple on the Global 500 list with revenue totaling $178.6 billion, compared to $156.5 billion for the iPhone maker. With $41.7 billion in profit, Apple pulled in the second most profits of all listed companies only falling short of ExxonMobil. Apple’s profit was more than double Samsung’s $20.6 billion annual profit. Overall, Samsung jumped six places to 14th in 2013, while Apple moved from 55th up to 19th with both companies falling well short of Royal Dutch Shell, which topped the Global 500 company with $481.7 billion in revenue. Meanwhile, Amazon jumped from No.206 last year to No.149 with revenue totaling $61.1 billion, ahead of Google at No.189, up from No.277, with annual revenue of $52.2 billion.
Netflix on Monday announced a blockbuster deal that will bring no less than 300 hours of original content from DreamWorks to its streaming video service. That means Netflix will have the rights to premier new series with characters from franchises that might include Shrek, Madagascar, Kung Fu Panda and Casper the Friendly Ghost. A deal of this magnitude with a leading animation house could be extremely expensive and no details about actual programming have been divulged at this point. That’s why it’s fascinating that Netflix’s share price soared by as much as 8% on Monday. More →