Friday, August 28, 2015

Should Amazon Release Another Kids Tablet?


Late last year Amazon released their first Fire Tablet that was aimed at kids. This device included a 1 year unlimited warranty and a protective case that was designed to withstand the trials and tribulations of capricious youth. The Fire HD Kids edition also had an augmented version of Amazons Android OS, that is a bit more kid friendly and is very tightly integrated with Freetime Unlimited. Customers have been very apathetic about this tablet, should Amazon maker another?

Amazon prides themselves on their review system and many people are quite enamored with products like the Kindle Voyage or Paperwhite 3. The Amazon Kids tablet on the other hand, well that is an entirely different story. One star ratings dominate the front page where people are complaining about the lack of memory, terrible battery life and woeful customer service when trying to get a warranty replacement.

Most of the reviewers do have a point about the lack of memory. The cheapest version of this tablet has 8 GB of memory, but when you take it out of the box for the first time there is only 4.5 GB available. This simply isn’t enough for kids who want to download a few movies and a couple of Disney games, not to mention interactive books. The lack of memory is the number one complaint from angry parents.

Amazon did not clearly make a kids tablet from scratch, they simply took the same Fire HD 7 and HD6, gave you a free case and changed the OS a bit and called it a kids tablet. Many of the devices from companies like Leapfrog or V.Tech were built with kids in mind. Amazon just saw a marketing opportunity and decided to run with it.

Every year Amazon releases more and more gadgets and people are getting burned out. I remember a time when there would be a couple of new e-readers and a few tablets every September or October.  Now we have so many devices, its almost ridiculous. Amazon Dash, Echo, smartphones, streaming media boxes and a bevy of  e-readers and tablets. It seems to me that Amazon is saturating the market with haphazard devices, and the Fire Kids Tablet deserves to die.

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