Frank T Hogg

I Gave Up on the Kindle Fire

Let me first say that if you've never used an iOS device, an iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad then the Kindle Fire should work fine for you. But what the pundits refer to as its 'rough edges' just got so annoying that I stopped using it and sent it back. At first I thought that Amazon would, in time, get those rough edges ironed out but I don't know how long that will take, if ever. The problem for iOS users is that we know how this stuff is supposed to work and when we use something like the Kindle Fire that doesn't work that way it gets annoying. I don't mean differences in the OS. I mean things like having to exit the video that's playing to adjust the volume. And not knowing what the volume will be until you let go of the slider. Then if you go back into settings to change the volume that you just changed, it's not selected and you have to click it again. It's just too stupid to put up with. I also know that these things are small and can easily be fixed but there are so many of them that I don't know how long that will take. Also the Kindle Fire is running Android 2.3 while Android 4.0 is the current version. I don't know how long it will take them to get up to speed there either. Android users say the Kindle Fire is the most advanced Android device out there. If that's the case then Apple has nothing to fear as iOS 5 is heads and shoulders about what I've experienced with the Kindle Fire.

BTW The reason I told Amazon I was sending it back was because the screen was too bright and hurt my eyes. The brightness slider only works on the top 2/3 of it's range. The bottom 1/3 does nothing. I'm not the only one who noticed this. There is a application that Android users can get to correct this but it doesn't work well with the version of Android the Kindle Fire uses. That's another area that is annoying. I found that app but I couldn't download it from any Android store because they blocked it. It's annoying to know a fix is available but you can't get it because of restrictions Amazon puts on the Fire's Android store. It just got to be not worth screwing around with anymore. iOS devices just work and eventually the Fire will too. Maybe then I'll give it another shot.

Update: Rumor has it that Amazon will release a software update,"in the next two weeks" that will address, "some of the issues". The Fire, in my opinion should not have been released so early. I assume Amazon did it to take advantage of the Christmas sales season and they probably thought it was good enough for most people who didn't know better. But it tarnishes their image in my mind and I'll never buy any of their products before I know it's finished and really ready to use. I don't want to be a pioneer anymore. The old saying fits well here, "You can always tell a pioneer by the arrows in their backs."

Update 2: Read an article about the Amazon Fire's problems here.

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