Amazon Releases the Kindle Fire – Takes Aim at Apple

Today Amazon dropped their new bombshell tablet, the Kindle Fire, onto the masses at a rather ridiculously low price of $199.  Complete with all the bell and whistle features (mostly) of the Apple iPad, many are wondering if the Kindle Fire will gouge into Apple’s tablet market share as Apple scales back the supply chain for the wildly popular iPad.

As if gripped by a premonition of the future, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos took to the website’s home page today with a kind matter-of-fact letter to his customers.  This same letter doubled as a nice matter-of-fact dropkick to the gut for a certain company that sells a similar product for, oh, three times the price!

Read on and see!

Dear Customer,

There are two types of companies: those that work hard to charge customers more, and those that work hard to charge customers less. Both approaches can work. We are firmly in the second camp.

We are excited to announce four new products: the all-new Kindle for only $79, two new touch Kindles – Kindle Touch and Kindle Touch 3G – for $99 and $149, and a new class of Kindle – Kindle Fire – a beautiful full color Kindle for movies, TV shows, music, books, magazines, apps, games, web browsing and more, for only $199.

 A picture of Amazon Kindles

These are high-end products – the best Kindles we’ve ever made. Kindle and Kindle Touch have the most-advanced E Ink display technology available, and the 3G Kindle Touch adds free 3G wireless – no monthly fees and no annual contracts. Kindle Fire brings everything we’ve been working on at Amazon for 15 years together into a single, fully-integrated experience for customers – instant access to Amazon’s massive selection of digital content, a vibrant color IPS touchscreen with extra-wide viewing angle, a 14.6 ounce design that’s easy to hold with one hand, a state-of-the-art dual core processor, free storage in the Amazon Cloud, and an ultra-fast mobile browser – Amazon Silk – available exclusively on Kindle Fire.

We are building premium products and offering them at non-premium prices.

Thank you for being a customer,

Jeff Bezos
Founder & CEO

p.s. – Kindle Fire has a radical new web browser called Amazon Silk. When you use Silk – without thinking about it or doing anything explicit – you’re calling on the raw computational horsepower of Amazon EC2 to accelerate your web browsing. If you’re curious, watch this short video to learn more about how it works.

Source – http://amazon.com (9/28/2011)

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_u7F_56WhHk&feature=player_embedded[/youtube]

So what are your thoughts? Has the tablet war officially begun?  Is the somewhat combative tone of Jeff Bezos a good marketing tactic?  You tell me!  😉

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