My husband and I decided we would get one for ourselves for Christmas. We don't usually buy big items and to us the $199 (free shipping though!) seemed like quite an extravagance. We knew we could never afford the ubiquitous i-Pad, although we'd love one, and the Kindle Fire does compare to that!
Our thoughts on the subject were hushed by the intent to use for homeschooling purposes, reading free books, and happy to accept the free month of Amazon Prime that comes with the purchase. Amazon Prime is a nice service if you love Amazon and free 2 day shipping, plus great movies and tv shows, and you can "borrow" one free book per month. Amazon Prime is $79 a year after the first free month with a Kindle purchase.
The black box I held in my eager hands is basically a little bit larger than a phone (it has a 7 inch screen!) and you plug it in for a while and it works! It even sets itself up after you put in the password for your wi-fi access. The wi-fi was super fast too...much faster than my laptop even.
I didn't even have to put my personal info in...it did it by itself! Whoa there Nelly! I was able to poke around at some of the fun features on my new Kindle before I had to charge it.
Getting used to the touch screen didn't take long, although I did have to figure out exactly where I needed to touch to get certain small buttons to work. (I don't have an i-Phone, but I assume it is similar to that interface).
There are easy links to Facebook, IMdb, Netflix, and tons more! I know I've barely scratched the surface in the 24 hours since it came to me. Last night I easily downloaded The Hunger Games and read it in a few hours on my Kindle...and that was fun! The backlight is rather bright so it may need adjusting, and I have yet to learn all the easy stuff (like tapping the screen insteady of sweeping across it to turn a page) that is built in. My little girl watched a video this morning and the sound was very good.
As far as the kids and homeschooling uses - they can use it when we eat out to keep busy (although I would certainly never get them each one!), there are tons of children's books available to read, they can watch educational and fun programs, and play games (but I doubt I will be tempted to allow them to start playing games online, unless they are educational). The next few months will show how often we do use our new toy as a homeschool resource!
The touch screen, of course, gets finger prints, but who's watching? Just wipe and go. And it is very sensitive, so be prepared to hit the back key when your elbow accidentally grazes the screen.
I can't wait to explore even more features of this miraculous little gizmo. With all the accessories on Amazon that one can purchase for the Kindle group of products...it's going to be fun using this device to find the perfect cover to protect it with!
If you can afford to give yourself a gift this Christmas, I think this would be a lovely addition to the techie gadget collection that might be growing on your bedside table. There are several other more affordable versions that I'm sure would be just as brilliant if you just want to read books (like me!). Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
Amazon Kindle Fire Price - $199 from Amazon.com
Features - Large 7 inch touch screen, full color, movie/film viewing capabilities, email and Facebook accessible.
Shipping - FREE
Add Ons - Amazon Prime-enabled for one month FREE
From Amazon's site:
Movies, apps, games, music, reading and more, plus Amazon's revolutionary, cloud-accelerated web browser