Amazon’s New Devices – 2012 Kindle Fire HD and Kindle Paperwhite

The Kindle Paperwhite is a new e-reader that sports better resolution with 212 pixels per inch, improved contrast, a new illumination technology that is described as a “flattened out fiber optic cable” that is LED powered, improved battery life of 8 weeks (even with the light on), and many new features. Some of the features include “time to read” which tells you how long it will take you to finish the book you are reading, new author biographies, new parental controls, and ability to access the lending library.

Amazon had a press conference today that unveiled three new devices. One new e-reader and two new versions of the Kindle Fire. Check out the new devices below.

There are WiFi and 3G versions, both with or without special offers (advertisements). The least expensive is the WiFi version with special offers and costs $119. The 3G version costs $179, and you can add $20 to either model if you do not want any special offers. You can preorder now and it will begin shipping on October 1.

The new Kindle Fire is similar to the prior Kindle Fire but now has a better, faster processor with “40% faster performance”, 1Gb of RAM (2x the old version), and longer battery life of 9 hours. The best part is that the price has been reduced to $159. You can order today and it will ship on Sept 14.

The Kindle Fire HD is a totally new tablet that comes in 7″ and 8.9″ versions. You can choose either 16Gb or 32Gb of storage. The 7″ version has a display resolution of 1280×800 and the 8.9″ display has a full HD resolution of 1920×1200. Both have IPS (in-plane switching) displays, advanced polarizing filter, and anti-glare technology. The 8.9″ display has 254 pixels per inch.

The processors are new TI OMAP dual core processors that come in either a 1.2GHz or 1.5GHz flavors. Apparently these processors have 40% more memory bandwith than the Tegra 3 processors in many tablets today.

The sound is improved and is called Dolby Digital Plus and there are dual stereo speakers. There is also an HD front facing camera, HDMI out, and Bluetooth.

Amazon’s Jeff Bezos put a lot of emphasis in his presentation on the improved WiFi technology in the new HD tablets. They are dual band (supporting both 2.4 and 5GHz bands) with two antennas and support MIMO (multiple-input and multiple-output) technology built-in. These are the first tablets with dual band MIMO and Amazon claims WiFi is 41% faster than the iPad3 and 54% faster than Nexus 7.

Some of the new features available on the new tablets include improved syncing of your content across devices. They call it Wispersync and it works for regular books, audiobooks, movies, and games so that you can pick up where you left off on any device. There is another feature Amazon dubbed as “immersion reading” that highlights the words of an audiobook in real time as it is being read to you.

There is an feature called “X-Ray” that will display relevant information such as actor biographies in movies or more information about characters, themes, and background in book.

Kindle Free Time is a new parental control that limits the amount of time kids can use the device. Multiple profiles can be made with different restrictions for each child using the device.

The 7″ Kindle Fire HD starts at $199 for the 16GB model and $249 for the 32GB upgrade. The 8.9″ Kindle Fire HD starts at $299 for the 16GB version and $369 for the 32GB device. You can preorder today and the device will ship on November 20th.

The new Kindle Fire HD with 4G LTE has all of the features of the 8.9″ Kindle Fire HD but also has a 4G LTE modem and offers increased storage space of 32GB or 64GB. The data plan cost $50/year for 250Mb/month and includes 20GB of cloud storage plus a $10 Amazon Appstore promotional credit. You may pre-order today and it will ship on November 20th. The 32GB version costs $499 and the 64GB device is $599.