Fair / Windy
The tablet wars are on! Amazon has kicked off the 2012 holiday shopping season with its new Kindle Fire HD.
But critics are asking: Is it enough to light a fire, and seriously challenge the iPad?
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has rolled out several new Kindles, including a new basic model called the Paperwhite.
The New Kindle Choices
Starting in November, Bezos plans the following changes to the Kindle line:
-The basic Kindle will drop in price from $79 to $69.
-Book lovers will have the option of buying the new Kindle Paperwhite for $119. It's an upgraded model that adds a light for nighttime reading, that will compete with the Nook Simple Touch Glow Light.
-The seven-inch Kindle Fire will have a sharper screen and some new features, but sell at a lower price: $159.
-The big news is the brand new Kindle Fire HD, designed to be a serious iPad challenger. It will come in three models: hope you are taking notes.
Fire HD Options
You will have a choice of buying a seven-inch Fire HD for $199.
Or you can upgrade to the 8.9-inch Fire HD for $299. That's almost the size of Apple's iPad, but $200 cheaper. The Fire HD will feature high def video, plus a front facing camera and Skype app for video chatting.
Finally, you can buy a 4G network model for $499, but that is in iPad price territory.
Will advantage be short lived?
Amazon hopes the Kindle Fire HD will take a bite out of iPad sales because of its lower price.
But critics say if Apple releases an iPad mini in the coming days -- at around $250 -- all bets are off. A $250 iPad could mean that Kindle's low price advantage may be short lived.
As always don't waste your money.
Don't Waste Your Money is a registered trademark of the EW Scripps Co.
"Like" John Matarese on Facebook
Follow John on Twitter (@DWYM)