Replace, Sept. 7, 2018: Amazon has introduced a brand new model of the Fireplace HD eight that will likely be out there beginning Oct. four. Pricing stays the identical at $80 (£80) and the modifications are modest — the brand new model steps as much as a 2-megapixel front-facing digital camera with 720p video, a microSD slot that may accommodate as much as 400GB of further storage and hands-free, always-on Alexa help.
The corporate additionally introduced that the 32GB Fireplace HD eight Children Version ($130 or £130) has been equally upgraded and features a protecting case, a two-year free alternative coverage and one 12 months of FreeTime Limitless. We’ll publish a full evaluate of each as quickly as we get our arms on evaluate samples, which ought to be simply earlier than it ships on Oct. four.
The Amazon Fireplace HD eight evaluate, first revealed on Oct. 1, 2016 and up to date since, follows.
Amazon’s new Fireplace HD eight appears rather a lot like final 12 months’s Fireplace HD eight, however there are a couple of key variations, the largest of which is the brand new cheaper price tag. A lot decrease, in truth: $90 or £90. (It is not out there in Australia to this point, however the US value converts to about AU$115.) By comparability, the equally sized Apple iPad Mini four prices $399, £379 or AU$569 and the Mini 2 prices $269, £239 or AU$369. Each now begin at 32GB capacities, however you possibly can actually purchase three or 4 Fireplace HD 8s for the worth of as soon as Mini.
The earlier era Fireplace HD eight began at $150 (£130 or AU$215). That mannequin got here with solely 8GB of storage whereas this new one consists of 16GB, with an growth slot for including microSD reminiscence playing cards as much as 200GB in capability.
Whereas the 1.3GHz quad-core processor within the 2016 HD eight is a brand new chip, Amazon says the actual efficiency enhance comes from a bump in RAM from 1GB to 1.5GB. And a bigger battery delivers as much as 12 hours of juice, up from eight hours. Amazon says that 12-hour battery ranking is for “mixed-use,” so it is laborious to find out in our personal exams if the brand new HD eight lives as much as these numbers, however the battery life, whereas not exceptionally good, appeared considerably improved from the previous HD eight in the course of the week I used the pill
. The largest hit it took was with heavy use of Wi-Fi and enjoying extra graphics-intensive video games.
The brand new Fireplace HD eight is available in 4 colours, together with tangerine (proven right here).
The opposite noteworthy characteristic addition is not out there but, however will likely be within the subsequent few months: Alexa, the cloud-based voice service, makes its debut on Fireplace tablets. To activate Alexa, you will should press a digital button (with the Echo you merely should say her title — as long as you are linked to the web). You should utilize voice instructions to inform Alexa to play music, launch video games, learn audiobooks, ship climate stories and extra.
Those that purchased an Amazon pill lately, fret not: Alexa can also be coming to the entry-level Fireplace, Fireplace HD 10, and 2015’s Fireplace HD eight tablets through a free over-the-air software program replace within the coming months.
Accessible in 4 colours, the brand new HD eight does really feel zippier than the earlier mannequin — I assumed apps loaded moderately shortly and the gadget did not really feel sluggish (we knocked final 12 months’s HD eight for mediocre efficiency).
Due to the stereo audio system tuned with Dolby audio, the pill outputs a great quantity of sound and works effectively for film watching. The entrance and rear cameras are fairly fundamental by in the present day’s requirements (the rear captures 720p video), however no less than they’re there and out there for such apps as Skype.