So we’ve rocking along on the phone version of Ajax, and I dare say the reading experience is actually better than that on the iPad. Unexpected, to say the least.
Now that we have both large and small format screen editions of the book, it makes sense to start looking at the Android market. Android tablets have had a tough run so far, with hardly any making a noticeable dent against the dominance of the iPad. As a developer wanting to put out Android tablet apps, It’s been hard to know where to target.
At last, the Kindle Fire may finally change that.
I have to say, I am very impressed by this little 200$ device. The price sets your expectations, but then what it actually does is in fact delightful. While not nearly as polished or zippy as an iPad, its size and user experience is in some cases better.
Whereas the iPad is quickly evolving to replace my laptop as a touch interface full featured computer, the Fire is merely a content consumption device. And with the weight of Amazon behind it, the thing is very well set up for this purpose. It simply places content up front, and this is why I beleive it will succeed.
It was very cool to simply login with my Amazon acct and have the device instantly populate with all my ebooks. It seems to run 3D games on par with the iPad 1. It does VOD and Netflix. And the browser feels more robust than Safari on iOS, if not a bit laggy. I’m sure with the next hardware update, we will see the OS performance match that of the iPad.
The final win for this thing is it’s size. At 7 inches with a res of 1024 x 600, it actually fits in my pocket. I can’t take my iPad anywhere without a bag, the portability will likely see me leaving the house more often with the Fire.
The last bastion I hold out for is an ebook store that sells apps. Until interactive books can be sold alongside their flat scanned ancestors and bought for comparable prices, the medium will not be viable economically (as the app store doesn’t give this premium content a fair shake.)
Let us hope Amazon sees the value of this and is able to offer a store experience that serves the developer, publisher, and customer better in 2012.