Amazon Kindle Fire vs iPad 2
Amazon entered the tablet market with its debut tablet ‘Kindle Fire’, which has a 7” multi touch display and Wi-Fi; also, it is powered by a dual core processor. Although, there are plenty of 7” tablet models in the market, what makes Kindle Fire popular is its price. Just for $200, you can own a tablet. iPad 2 will cost you in the range of $599 to $829. Even the price of the first generation iPad starts at $499. Amazon is using the pricing strategy coupled with its rich collection of books/music/movies and the existing Amazon services to attract customers. Nevertheless, can Kindle Fire match to iPad 2 in features and performance? Let us see the features and performances of both in detail.
What is the difference between Kindle Fire and iPad2?
iPad 2 is the latest version of the last year’s largely successful iPad by Apple Inc. iPad 2 was officially released in the first quarter of 2011 in USA, Europe and in many Asian countries. Kindle Fire is Amazon’s debut in the tablet market. It was announced in September 2011, and pre order already opened. The device will be available in the market from 15 November 2011.
Kindle Fire stands 7.5” tall and has a thickness of 0.45”. iPad 2 is 9.42” tall and remains 0.34 “at its thickest point. Therefore, between the two devices, iPad 2 is the bigger and slimmer device. Kindle Fire is small and bulky. Although iPad 2 is bigger, it has great mobility as it is ultra slim. Kindle Fire weighs 413 g and iPad 2 is nearly 601 g; both cannot be called lightweight devices.
The display of Kindle Fire is a 7”LCD multi-touch screen with 1024 x 600 pixels resolution. iPad 2 is complete with a 9.7” LED backlit, LCD multi-touch screen with 1024 x 768 pixels resolution. Between the two devices, iPad 2 has a bigger screen, but the pixel density is more in Kindle Fire (Kindle Fire 169ppi and iPad 2 132ppi). However, iPad 2 has the LED back lighting, which makes the display bright and vivid. Both have utilized the IPS technology for wide viewing angle (178 degrees). iPad 2 display has finger print resistant oleophobic coating; while we cannot comment at this moment about a similar feature in Kindle Fire display, it is reportedly made of hardened plastic. Amazon claims that it is 20 times stiffer and 30 times harder than the plastic, and the display is treated for anti-reflection.
Comparing the processing power of both the devices, they both are built with 1GHz dual core processor. However, Apple A5 processor has been tested and performs far better than many other same speed processors, while, at this moment, we cannot comment on the actual performance of the processor in Kindle Fire. In addition, we cannot expect Kindle Fire to feature a larger RAM than iPad 2, as Kindle Fire is a low cost tablet. Coming to the storage, Kindle Fire has only 8GB of internal storage, out of which more than 2GB is preloaded with applications, so what is left for the user is nearly 6GB of storage space. The storage cannot be expanded, as there is no SD card slot. iPad 2 has three storage options such as 16 GB, 32 GB and 64 GB. Since iPad 2 comes with different storage options, users can select one according to their financial limitations as well as usage. Both offer cloud storage free for their own content; apple iCloud for iTune content and Amazon Cloud for Amazon content.
For connectivity, iPad 2 has Wi-Fi only and Wi-Fi plus 3G models. While only Wi-Fi is available on Kindle Fire, 3G is not available. As, Kindle Fire depends more on the cloud storage with only 6GB space available for user storage, and considering the current tablet market this could be a huge de motivator for potential buyers.
iPad 2 also has a 0.7 megapixel rear facing camera and a front facing VGA camera. It is evident that the camera quality is not up to the quality of other tables in the market. However, it is decent enough for a device like tablet. Nevertheless, there is nothing here to compare, as Kindle Fire does not feature any of them.
Battery is another important component for tablet/pad. Amazon claims that Kindle Fire has 7.5 hours of battery life with video playing, but Wi-Fi off or 8 hours of reading with Wi-Fi off. iPad 2 has 9 hours of battery life with Wi-Fi on.
Looking at the software; iPad 2 comes with iOS 4.3 installed, but can be upgraded to iOS 5, and applications for iPad 2 can be downloaded from Apple App store. Underlying Kindle Fire is the Android OS, but it is heavily customized by Amazon. Amazon boasts of 18 million movies, TV shows, songs, games, applications, books, and magazines that accessible to the Kindle users. Amazon also introducing the ‘Amazon Silk’ cloud accelerated browser for surfing, which it call as revolutionary split browser, instead of the WebKit browser. Amazon Silk supports Adobe flash, and has features like book marks, tabbed browsing, tap for zooming in and out etc.
Amazon has learned from the market that the opportunity is only there for low priced tablets, since it is difficult to compete with iPad in the high-end market. Therefore, it has compromised on hardware for a better price. Nevertheless, Kindle Fire is a good option for those beginners who want to experience the tablet life.
Apple iPad 2
iPad 2 is the latest version of the last year’s largely successful iPad by Apple Inc. iPad 2 was officially released in March 2011. A significant change in software is not visible; however, hardware modifications can be seen. iPad 2 has become thinner lighter and faster than its predecessor; it has bench marked the industry standards for tablet PC’s.
iPad 2 is designed ergonomically, and users may find it a little smaller than the previous version (iPad). The device remains 0.34″ at its thickest point. At nearly 600g the device cannot be called a light weight device. iPad 2 is available in Black and White versions. iPad 2 is complete with a 9.7” LED back-lit multi touch display with IPS technology. The screen has a finger print resistant oleo phobic coating. In terms of connectivity, the iPad 2 is available as Wi-Fi only, as well as, a 3G version.
The new iPad 2 has a 1 GHz dual core CPU called the A5. The graphics performance is reportedly 9 times faster. The device is available in 3 storage options such as 16 GB, 32 GB and 64 GB. The device supports 9 hours of battery life for 3G web surfing and charging is available via power adapter and USB. The device also includes a three-axis gyroscope, an accelerometer, and a light sensor.
iPad 2 comprises a front facing camera, as well as, a rear facing camera, but in comparison to other cameras in the market, the rear facing camera is of less quality, though it can record up to 720p HD video. In still camera mode, it has 5x digital Zoom. The front camera can be mainly used for video calling called “FaceTime” in iPad terminology. Both cameras have the capability to capture video, as well.
Since the screen is multi touch, inputs can be given by many hand gestures. Additionally a microphone is also available with the iPad 2. As for output devices a 3.5-mm stereo headphone mini jack and a built-in speaker is available.
The new iPad 2 comes with iOS 4.3 installed, and it can be updated to iOS 5. iPad 2 has the backing of the world’s biggest collecting of mobile applications for a platform. Applications for iPad 2 can be downloaded from Apple App store directly to the device. The device comes complete with multi lingual support, as well. “FaceTime”; the video conferencing application is probably the highlight of the phones capabilities. With the new updates to iOS 5, the browser performance is also reportedly upgraded.
As for accessories iPad introduces the new smart cover for iPad 2. The cover is designed seamlessly with iPad 2 that lifting up the cover is capable of waking up iPad. If the cover is closed, iPad 2 will immediately go to sleep. A wireless keyboard is also available, and it is sold separately. Dolby digital 5.1 surround sound is also available via an Apple Digital Av adapter sold separately.
The cost of ownership for an iPad is perhaps the highest in the market to own a tablet PC. A Wi-Fi only version can start at 499 $ and go up to 699 $. While a Wi-Fi and 3 G version can start from $629 to $829.