Oct 012011

Early in 2010 before the iPad was released and the Kindle was riding high, the talk was about whether the iPad would be the Kindle Killer and take the ereader market from Amazon. Eighteen months later, the Kindle is still going strong and the iPad, although dominating the tablet market, has not made a significant inroads in the eBook reading market. However, with the latest release of three new Kindle devices one of which is a multifunctional tablet like the iPad, but with a smaller screen size, the question now being asked is has the iPad 2 Killer now arrived?

Amazon Kindle Fire Specs vs Apple iPad 2 Specs

Kindle FireiPad 2

Lets start with specs of the two devices.

Round 1 to Kindle Fire With Better Screen Display

EReader Feature Kindle Fire Apple iPad 2
Reading Screen – Type Color LED IPS (in-plane switching) backlit. Color LED IPS (in-plane switching) backlit.
Reading Screen -Size (diagonal) 7 inch (17.8 cm) 9.7 inch (24.6 cm)
Reading Screen –Pixel Resolution 1024 x 600,
16 million colors.
1024 x 768.
256K colors.
Auto rotating.
Reading Screen – Pixel Density (ppi) 169 pixels per inch 132 pixels per inch.


Apart from the display size, the most notable difference in the tablet displays is the greater color depth of the Kindle Fire. Although the Apple display has a greater number of pixels, this advantage is nullified when viewing movies as the Kindle Fire screen size better matches the format of modern films and TV shows.

Round 2 User Controls – Same on Kindle Fire and iPad 2

EReader Feature Kindle Fire Apple iPad 2
Reading Screen – Type Color LED IPS (in-plane switching) backlit. Color LED IPS (in-plane switching) backlit.
User controls Touch Screen – Capacitative. Touch Screen – Capacitative.



Round 3 to iPad 2 for Better Data Storage and Connectivity

EReader Feature Kindle Fire Apple iPad 2
User Accessible Memory No memory card slot. 8GB built-in. Unlimited via memory card slot. 16GB, 32GB or 64GB built-in.
Connectivity Wi-Fi only.
No Bluetooth.
Micro USB2.
3.5mm audio jack.
3G+Wi-Fi OR Wi-Fi only.
Bluetooth 2.1+EDR. USB.
3.5mm audio jack.


With the Kindle Fire’s modest 8GB storage capacity, Amazon is clearly relying heavily on the Amazon cloud server. Whilst the Amazon’s cloud technology is more advanced than Apple’s offering features such as streaming and synchronization, it does ideally require continuous connectivity between the tablet and cloud. With WiFi hotspots becoming increasingly widespread, ubiquitous WiFi may become a reality but for now Amazon Fire’s access to the cloud may prove to be a source of frustration when travelling. Although with the iPad, watching video over 3G could be crippling costly, at least there is enough onboard storage to preload some movies before your trip. A possible solution is to augment the Kindle Fire with a MiFi hotspot device with built in data storage.


Round 4 to Kindle Fire for greater portability

EReader Feature Kindle Fire Apple iPad 2
Battery Life 0.3 days. 0.4 days.
Size (mm)
Weight 414g / 14.6oz. 601g / 21.3 oz Wi-Fi 613g / 21.6 oz 3G+Wi-Fi


Being 33% lighter, the Amazon Fire tablet is significantly more portable than the iPad 2. For example, the Amazon Fire can be held in one hand rather like a book.

Round 5 Content – Amazon Fire best for eBooks, Apple iPad best for Apps

Both the Kindle Fire and Apple iPad have millions of songs, TV shows, and movies. The difference lies in the number of apps and eBooks available for each tablet.

EReader Feature Kindle Fire Apple iPad 2
Songs, Podcasts, Audiobooks, Films and TV shows 17,000,000 16,000,000 (14m songs, 1m podcasts, 3000 TV shows, 2500 movies, 20000 audiobooks)
eBooks 850,000 150,000
Apps 17,000 500,000


Round 6 to Kindle Fire for Price

EReader Feature Kindle Fire Apple iPad 2
Price (USD) $199. Check Latest Prices $499. Check Latest Price
Useful Links  Top 10 Kindle Fire Covers Top 10 iPad Covers


The Kindle Fire is less than half the price of the entry level iPad, and occupies a very attractive sub-$200 price point. At this price, a new market previously untapped by iPad is now accessible.

Overall winner is the Kindle Fire

Amazon have successfully designed the Kindle Fire to showcase the extensive digital content available from Amazon.com. At last the Apple iPad have a competent competitor for the top tablet spot.

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