Amazon Kindle Fire Review

Joshua Topolsky, The Verge:

The 1024 x 600 LCD display does a fine job with all sorts of media, displaying bright colors and crisp text. Touch response on the capacitive screen seemed relatively good — I do take issue with some scrolling behavior, though I think it has more to do with software than anything else […]

7.x-inch tablets are shifting toward 1280×800. This makes sense since a big part of marketing these tablets center around video and HD content is going to look much better on 1280×800.

1024×600 isn’t optimal for viewing HD video, but to be fair the iPad isn’t great for HD videos either with a 4:3 1024×768; it’s probably worse because of the more squarish aspect ratio.

John Gruber mentioned the video review for skimmers so I took at look. At around 30 seconds I saw what seemed like light bleeding through the cover glass, at three different points on the bottom.

The non-HD pixel count on a 16:9 screen will defuse some enthusiasm for video fanatics, but for the rest of us the Amazon Kindle Fire will make it so easy to shop ’til we drop wherever we might be.

Update: Marco Arment took the Kindle Fire for a spin and concluded:

[…] this isn’t a device that makes me want to use it more. And that’s fatal.

And about that light bleeding:

The backlight leaks significantly around the top edge (when held in portrait). This is distracting when viewing a white screen, like every reading screen.

Update 2: David Streifeld, The New York Times:

A few of their many complaints: there is no external volume control. The off switch is easy to hit by accident. Web pages take a long time to load. There is no privacy on the device; a spouse or child who picks it up will instantly know everything you have been doing. The touch screen is frequently hesitant and sometimes downright balky.

Update 3: David Pogue talks about the “Polish Update” to the Kindle Fire:

Sure enough: the home screen “carousel,” a rotating shelf that holds all of your books, magazines and movies, now stops on a dime when you want it to. It takes only one tap to open something instead of several frustrating ones. When you do tap something, it opens faster and more fluidly. Page turns are smoother, especially in magazines.

Stuff in need of more polish: magazine page navigation thumbnails rudely cover content, and the auto off feature thanks to the on/off button location. Who is the genius that thought putting it on the bottom was a great idea?