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Live from Amazon’s Kindle tablet event!

Published Sep 28th, 2011 9:15AM EDT

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We’re live and in color from Amazon’s Kindle tablet (Kindle Fire, it would seem) event here in New York City, and we’ll be bringing you all the action live as it happens. While the tablet itself has been leaking for months — BGR exclusively reported this past May that Amazon’s first tablet would be based on the NVIDIA Tegra 2 processor, and a larger device sporting a quad-core CPU will launch early next year — by there should still be a few surprises in store. At least we hope so. Stay tuned for the live coverage to start just before 10:00 a.m. Eastern, and don’t forget to refresh this page for the latest news as it breaks.

UPDATE: Make sure to check out our hands-on with the Amazon Kindle Fire!, Amazon Kindle touch, and new Amazon Kindle!

10:53AM:Amazon Kindle Fire is available to pre-order today and ships in November. We’re done! Demo time!


10:52AM:P.S. Can you imagine RIM not owning the hardware design to their tablet? I can’t process this… Imagine Apple letting a manufacturer sell their hardware design to a competitor, it’s mind-blowing.



10:51AM:This is unbelievable value. Premium products at non-premium prices, we are determined to do this and we’re doing it. Showing the introductory Kindle Fire TV commerical now.


10:51AM:What do you get with the Kindle FIre? 18 million songs, movies, TV shows, books, magazines, apps, and games. 14 ounces, hold it with one hand. Dual-core processor, multi-touch 7-inch IPS display, free Amazon Cloud storage. Whispersync, Amazon Silk, and it’s $199.


10:48AM:They are super excited about Amazon Silk.

10:48AM:Marketing stuff.


10:47AM:Virtually limitless cache that can store the common files that are used to render the pages you view every day.


10:46AM:By building a browser that is smart, and split, we think really changes the game.

10:46AM:The biggest differentiator in our browser is that it’s split between running on the device and the cloud.


10:45AM:Mobile devices aren’t meant to process and crunch all this data.

10:45AM:We started to look at the difference between mobile and desktop experience. Performance of loading a page, customers care how long a page takes to load.


10:44AM:Video is up showing how Amazon is creating a cloud-computing-friendly browser.

10:44AM:Demoing Kindle Silk now…

10:44AM:We have unlimited computational power and unlimited bandwidth. It’s called Amazon Silk. It’s a split browser, partially in EC2 and partially in Kindle Fire.


10:43AM:Showing CNN web page breakdown, static images, dynamic images across multiple domains, javascript, HTML, CSS files, etc. It’s challenging for mobile devices to display modern pages rapidly. We asked ourselves, is there someway we can use the computational horsepower of Amazon EC2 to accelerate mobile web browsing.



10:42AM:It had one image, all served from one domain. Here’s what Amazon looks like today. 63 times bigger, many assets and files, and that is totally normal. The modern web is complicated.


10:41AM:Let’s give you some context. This is Amazon’s web page from when we started more than 15 years ago. It’s hard to remember. That webpage was only 10kb.

10:41AM:I still have more for you!

10:41AM:You can see how fast the dual-core processor is, and you can see my skills lacking. It’s therapeutic.


10:40AM:Back on the homescreen, playing Fruit Ninja.

10:40AM:You can read with music playing in the background. One of the nice features, you can pull up the menu and pause your music from that top menu from wherever you are.


10:40AM:Music is playing in the background now, we’re on the homepage, going into books.


10:39AM:“There’s a fire starting in my heart…”

10:39AM:We’re going to the music now.. clean interface, very minimalistic. Adele, again. Not Macy Gray.


10:39AM:Beautiful display. Let’s pause that…

10:39AM:16 million colors, 169 pixels per inch, Gorilla Glass.


10:38AM:We’re watching X-Men…

10:38AM:If a movie was played, that’s on top. If you just downloaded a subscription, that’s on top. Easy place to find everything you interact with. Underneath that is where you can pin your favorites. Bookshelf for pinning-favorites. Let’s watch some X-Men.


10:38AM:Underneath that, is the row of different categories, newsstand, books, music, video, docs. Underneath that is the carousel, it’s in most recently touched order.


10:37AM:It will know about your library and content already. Under that is a search bar, search locally or search cloud content, search the web, and search the Kindle stores.

10:37AM:Up at the top it says Jeff’s Kindle. Just like with Kindle e-reader, you take it out of the box, it will greet you by name and is pre-registered.



10:36AM:Bezos is showing off the Kindle Fire now.


10:36AM:You won’t have the frustration of finding your spot.

10:36AM:When you get home, switch to your big screen TV, your movie will be right where you left it.

10:35AM:People love Whispersync, so we thought, people would really like the ability to have Whispersync work with movies, TV shows. It does.

10:35AM:We are taking over the model of managing your content. Everything is stored in the cloud. We feel the same way about syncing, syncing just like with Kindle books should be done invisibly in the background. Photo of an Apple USB cable on the screen.




10:34AM:TV shows, songs, apps from Android app store, millions of books, beautiful full color magazines.

10:34AM:7-inch IPS display, fast dual-core CPU, light, 14.6 ounces. All the content.


10:33AM:The answer is yes, it’s called Kindle Fire.


10:33AM:We have Amazon Web Services, Amazon Prime, Kindle, Instant Video, MP3, and the appstore for Android. We asked ourselves, is there someway we can bring all of these things together… into a remarkable product offering… here comes the real tablet.


10:31AM:Amazon Web Services… hundreds of thousands of customers in 190 countries. We started this seven years ago and it’s pretty big.

10:31AM:CBS, Universal, Fox…


10:30AM:You can instantly stream 11,000 movies and TV shows. We have had great participation from networks and studios.

10:30AM:Earlier this year, we added a whole new benefit to Amazon Prime, Prime instant video.


10:29AM:We have a program called Amazon Prime and it’s been unbelievably successful, all you can eat two-day shipping for only $79/year. Many millions of members.


10:28AM:We have our Android apps store, every app is tested for quality. You can test drive apps before you buy, and a free app every day.

10:28AM:Press quotes up on the screen, this one from David Pogue.


10:27AM:Recently introduced Amazon Cloud player to listen wherever you have a browser.

10:27AM:We have an MP3 store with 17,000,000 songs, native apps to buy once listen anywhere.


10:27AM:For 15 years, we have been building our media business. We have strong digital offerings in every media category. 100,000 movies and TV shows, rent movies, new releases, and more than 300 devices can watch them.


10:26AM:Showing a 30-second commercial now.

10:26AM:So meet the family. People are going to love these…


10:25AM:“Images are beautiful screensavers”


10:25AM:A few months later, it was on our 3G Kindle and that was the best selling. We’re making it better with AmazonLocal, special offers in your area.

10:25AM:Several months ago we put special offers on our Kindle, and the special offers version became the best selling.


10:24AM:This device you can order today and it ships today. We’re going to sell many millions of these.

10:24AM:Built-in Wi-Fi, most advanced advanced e-ink display.


10:24AM:We’re making premium products and offering them at non-premium prices.

10:23AM:This Kindle is incredibly light, under 6 ounces, 30% lighter than previous. 18% smaller, fit in your back pocket. Faster page turns, this is a solid device. Incredible device.


10:23AM:So what could you do if you didn’t want touch. Then you’d have a $79 Kindle.

10:23AM:We have many customers who expressly tell us they don’t want touch, I don’t want to touch the display.

10:22AM:What if you don’t need touch, or what if you don’t want touch?

10:22AM:“We’re going to sell many millions of these.”


10:22AM:$149 is the “top-of-the-line” Kindle touch 3G, preorder today, and ship November 21st.

10:22AM:Works in 100 countries.

10:21AM:There is another device announced today… the Kindle touch 3G. Free 3G wireless. Built in Wi-Fi and no contract, no data plan.



10:21AM:Most advanced e-ink display, infrared touch interface, extra long battery life, books in 60 seconds, audible integration, X-Ray and new features, and free storage.


10:20AM:What do you get for $99?

10:20AM:Kindle touch is only $99!

10:20AM:More quotes…

10:19AM:Every time we launch a new device, I get comments like this. Imagine a Kindle for $99. There would be a frenzy. Amazon would sell so many of them. – TechCrunch


10:19AM:He’s on another phrase from the book, a character. It’s giving a ridiculous amount of background on a fictional character.

10:18AM:The reason these definitions can come up so easily is because it’s not going out to pull that, and when you download a book, we have pre-calculated all of these important phrases, and deliver that side file with those in them



10:17AM:Here’s a page, fictional characters, real places.

10:17AM:We have a feature called X-Ray. You can look at the bones of the book.

10:17AM:Is there something a little more that we could do?

10:17AM:I’m in the middle of Remains Of the Day, one of my favorite books. Any of you who have used Kindle, one of the great features of the Kindle is that you can look up the definition of a word easily. I used to gloss over words that I wasn’t sure of their meaning.

10:16AM:Demo time!


10:16AM:In a dedicated device we can focus on this.

10:16AM:Normal placement for next page and previous page on opposite sides don’t make sense since people like to change hands halfway through. EasyReach relays out the tap zones, the previous page tap zone is small on the left hand size, easy to reach over.



10:14AM:One of the great things about building a device just built for reading is that you can obsess over those details.

10:14AM:Infrared layer on top of the e-ink display so it doesn’t interfere with your reading. Smaller, lighter, unbelievable build quality. People will love it.


10:13AM:Here’s Kindle touch! Infrared touch

10:13AM:You can now go to 11,000 public library and they will loan you Kindle books. I believe it is the fact that Kindle is an end-to-end service and we have been inventing at a rapid page that has keep Kindle the world’s #1 e-reader for four years running.


10:13AM:Kindle Singles are a shorter version of a book, longer than a magazine article, and it’s “working very well.”

10:12AM:There really are only two content lengths that works, article links that go into a magazine, and book lengths.

10:12AM:Friends in book clubs using physical books? We added page numbers to make that possible to keep up with them.

10:11AM:While you’re reading, if you found an interesting passage you want to share with your friends, we made that easy.

10:11AM:Whispersync works beautifully. Read on your Kindle, switch to smartphone, it’s right where you left off.


10:11AM:Android, iPhone, iPad, Windows Phone, BlackBerry, Mac, PC, and most recently we launched the Kindle cloud reader, an HTML5 app, so you have access to your library wherever you have a browser.

10:10AM:We built an ecosystem so you could buy once and read everywhere.


10:10AM:Every Kindle has a unique email to send documents to the device.

10:10AM:We broke the model of customers backing up their digital content. We’ll keep your copy in the cloud, delete it if you want, just download it again. We added text to speech, read or listen while you’re cooking dinner. We did deep integration with

10:09AM:No backlight no eye-strain, no interfering with sleep cycles, like a printed page. Long battery life measured in weeks even months, and you could keep your whole library with you.


10:09AM:We used electronic ink so that you could read outside in bright daylight, wherever you want to be.

10:09AM:You can choose any of these books and have them in sixty seconds wireless.


10:08AM:Kindle books are outselling traditional books, and it’s working because it’s all integrated into an experience. Your Kindle is pre-registered, and knows your Amazon credentials, and your second Kindle knows about your library. What would a Kindle end-to-end service be without books? 90,000 books four years ago, today it’s a million.


10:07AM:Negative quotes from the press are up on the screen.




10:06AM:4 years ago we set out to improve upon the book. When you decide you’re going to reinvent something that has been around for 5 centuries, you are rightly going to receive some skepticism.


10:05AM:“Thank you for taking the time to be here this morning”


10:05AM:Jeff Bezos is on stage!

10:05AM:People love their Kindles, it seems.


10:04AM:Lauren, a science tutor is holding the Kindle. More people are talking about how they love using their Kindle.

10:03AM:Video is playing and lights are down. “New York City. Two Weeks Ago.”

10:02AM:Alright, we’re getting started in a few!

10:02AM:More component leakage: the Amazon Kindle Fire appears it will have 8GB of built-storage, a nice cost savings.

10:00AM:The broadcast media here is impressive. The entire back of the room is lined up with film crews.

9:58AM:Sounds like Adele across the speakers in here. Or Macy Gray.


9:55AM:If the Kindle Fire really is $199, are you going to buy it? That’s a pretty amazing price for a media tablet. Though it seems that the game Amazon is playing here, based on the leaks, is that they are almost anticipating people will buy both, just like people buy an iPad and a Kindle.


9:52AM:The dude next to us is using an Apple wireless keyboard on top of an iPad 2. We’re laughing hysterically.


9:49AM:We’re packed in with probably 250 other people, and Amazon’s logo is emblazoned on the large screen on the stage.


9:47AM:We’re in!

9:41AM:Bloomberg is reporting the Amazon Kindle Fire will cost $199, boast a 7-inch display, be Wi-Fi only, and not include a camera or a microphone. It will also reportedly include a 30-day trial of Amazon Prime.

9:30AM:We’re peeking under the door and we can see that the room inside is lit up in Amazon’s trademark blue. If the photo looks purple, that’s on Epstein.


9:29AM:We’ve moved to a new waiting area, which is warmer, though it’s not a good warm.


9:05AM:We’re standing in line, freezing. Oh, there’s coffee.

Jonathan S. Geller
Jonathan Geller Founder, President & Editor-in-chief

Jonathan S. Geller founded Boy Genius Report, now known as BGR, in 2006. It became the biggest mobile news destination in the world by the end of 2009, and BGR was acquired by leading digital media company PMC in April 2010.

Jonathan is President of BGR Media, LLC., and Editor-in-chief of the BGR website.

What started as a side project at the age of 16, quickly transpired into 24-hour days and nights of sharing exclusive and breaking news about the mobile communications industry. BGR now reaches up to 100 million readers a month through the website, syndication partners, and additional channels.


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