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Burn your books! [eReaders] are here!

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  • ElinElin Registered User regular
    It's beautiful! Auto: I already knew about the cloud thing, although supposedly we're supposed to have 5 gigs of non Amazon cloud storage available as well, I haven't looked for it yet though. Doesn't matter too much, I have so many extra cords kicking around here I give them to neighbors for free. Everything looks great so far though, grabbed the full version of that document suite that was free yesterday so I should be golden there.

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  • XeddicusXeddicus Registered User regular
    edited November 2011
    Question for you @Automaticzen (or anyone else who has a Fire): Have you sideloaded any of your own files through USB? Books or movies? If so, what formats and how did it handle them? Books display properly, movies play ok? They keep touting how it handles Amazon content, but I want to make sure it handles non-Amazon stuff ok. Most reviews so far seem to either omit sideloading or barely mention it.

    Xeddicus on
    "For no one - no one in this world can you trust. Not men. Not women. Not beasts...this you can trust."
  • ElinElin Registered User regular
    edited November 2011
    Well, I sideloaded a .mobi file into the books folder but it displayed under documents. It looks great though, regardless. I put an mp3 in the music player, it showed up in the music section and played fine. I put a .docx in the doc folder and it didn't display but I used my document app to grab it from the folder and it worked just fine.

    Elin on
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  • Jubal77Jubal77 Registered User regular
    Its here! Its here! This is a very pretty screen for so small a tablet. This Fire just feels solid in your hands. Time for a firmware update.


    The earth is the mother of all people, and all people should have equal rights upon it.
    Chief Joseph
  • AyulinAyulin Registered User regular
    Elin wrote:
    I'm also getting mine tomorrow! I can't wait to dump all of my academic PDF's on it next semester, going to be SO MUCH EASIER.

    I figured I could dump my PDF onto the Amazon Cloud Drive and it would sync over to the Fire, but this is not the case. Only Amazon content and MP3s uploaded to the Cloud Drive sync over.

    The only options are to email the documents to your Kindle's special email address, or hook it up to a computer and manually transfer them over. And it the Fire only comes with a microUSB AC adapter, not the hybrid one with the old Kindles. So if you have an old Kindle, grab the cable because you'll need it.

    It's a great PDF reader once you've moved everything over though.

    This is kind of weird, but how great exactly is it at PDF reading? Any issues with responsiveness when scrolling/zooming? I'm really tempted to get one shipped over here for all my school PDFs too.

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  • KyanilisKyanilis Registered User regular
    Woo, my Fire got here today and I'm liking it a lot. I can see why people might complain but it is basically what I expected, and it does what I expected well.

    Took some work to sideload an apk, but it is doable. No buyer's remorse here.

  • ElinElin Registered User regular
    Ayulin wrote:
    Elin wrote:
    I'm also getting mine tomorrow! I can't wait to dump all of my academic PDF's on it next semester, going to be SO MUCH EASIER.

    I figured I could dump my PDF onto the Amazon Cloud Drive and it would sync over to the Fire, but this is not the case. Only Amazon content and MP3s uploaded to the Cloud Drive sync over.

    The only options are to email the documents to your Kindle's special email address, or hook it up to a computer and manually transfer them over. And it the Fire only comes with a microUSB AC adapter, not the hybrid one with the old Kindles. So if you have an old Kindle, grab the cable because you'll need it.

    It's a great PDF reader once you've moved everything over though.

    This is kind of weird, but how great exactly is it at PDF reading? Any issues with responsiveness when scrolling/zooming? I'm really tempted to get one shipped over here for all my school PDFs too.

    On the PDF I tested I emailed it over with my Kindle address. It took about 10 minutes to show up, but usingvthe email address archives it in your Amazon account and displays it on your document "shelf." Scrolling is smooth but the text is a little fuzzy at the default (small) size. Once I resided the page a little bigger it was perfectly clear. I also opened it using my PDF reader app, using that the text wad clear at the smaller size as well as larger. Since I was reading most of my PDF's on my phone this is a space race sized improvement for me.

    The document I tested did not have any pictures or graphics, if no one else chimes in I'll try one with all the bells and whistles tomorrow.

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  • AyulinAyulin Registered User regular
    A bells and whistles test would be awesome :D

    The main concern I have is whether text is readable without having to scroll left or right (for say an A4-sized page), if you were to zoom so all the text fit the screen neatly (i.e. "fit visible") - is that the case?

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  • XeddicusXeddicus Registered User regular
    Kyanilis wrote:
    Woo, my Fire got here today and I'm liking it a lot. I can see why people might complain but it is basically what I expected, and it does what I expected well.

    Took some work to sideload an apk, but it is doable. No buyer's remorse here.

    What did the 'some work' detail, exactly?

    "For no one - no one in this world can you trust. Not men. Not women. Not beasts...this you can trust."
  • AutomaticzenAutomaticzen Registered User regular
    edited November 2011
    Ayulin wrote:
    This is kind of weird, but how great exactly is it at PDF reading? Any issues with responsiveness when scrolling/zooming? I'm really tempted to get one shipped over here for all my school PDFs too.

    Scrolling sideways is fine. It's really smooth page turn for a long swipe and a snap for a short swipe. Zooming in was fine with no issues, zooming out it takes a hot second to load the stuff it wasn't rendering before. Zoom level is not retained from page to page (it snaps back to fit to page). You can also just tap on either side of the screen to turn pages. No bookmarking built into the base Amazon doc reader, so you have to know what page you're looking for. PDF's are read horizontally, like an e-book.

    Tried Adobe Reader as well. Slower on the re-render after zooming, but it can see built-in bookmarks, but not add new ones. Reading is vertical.
    Ayulin wrote:
    A bells and whistles test would be awesome :D

    The main concern I have is whether text is readable without having to scroll left or right (for say an A4-sized page), if you were to zoom so all the text fit the screen neatly (i.e. "fit visible") - is that the case?

    Double-tap and pinch zooming is focused on wherever you did the action. There is no "fit visible" option.

    Otherwise, the readability is dependent on the PDF itself. I have one that's a pretty bad scan, but it's still mostly readable.

    I'll try videos at some point, but the base Kindle I believe only supports Mp4s.

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  • XeddicusXeddicus Registered User regular
    So the Fire got rooted quick. Now if they just need to get busy with the roms to unlock everything.

    "For no one - no one in this world can you trust. Not men. Not women. Not beasts...this you can trust."
  • KyanilisKyanilis Registered User regular
    Xeddicus wrote:
    Kyanilis wrote:
    Woo, my Fire got here today and I'm liking it a lot. I can see why people might complain but it is basically what I expected, and it does what I expected well.

    Took some work to sideload an apk, but it is doable. No buyer's remorse here.

    What did the 'some work' detail, exactly?

    Well, I didn't have the SDK installed at first on the laptop I was using to sideload, so there was that. You can use ADB to sideload, but you have to adjust a few files and add the the information to the Google USB ADB driver inf so that it can use it. Looks like there's more and more information coming out so it'll likely require less searching for all the details now, heh. Not difficult, but if you aren't familiar with ADB then I can see how someone might have an issue.

  • KambingKambing Registered User regular
    I just whispersynced A gentle introduction to category theory over to my kindle fire. All math and diagrams render fine. The default viewer is pretty bare bones, but that's all I need, so I'm happy.

    I'm going to be happy if and when a dropbox app gets added because that's where I keep all my papers these days.

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  • Medium DaveMedium Dave Registered User regular
    I backed up the dropbox app from my phone, put it on my comp, connect the Fire, transferred it over and installed that bitch. Works great.

    I've done that with a handful of apps so far, works mostly pretty good.

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  • FairchildFairchild Neutralizing hostiles. Registered User regular
    Amazon clearly intends the 7 inch Fire to be a media consumption device rather than an e-mail or "mobile computer" device. I suspect that a forthcoming 10 inch Fire would cover that area. The wireless industry is moving towards phone/tablet/reader hybrid devices and with their awesome support ability, Amazon is looking to lead that parade.

  • KambingKambing Registered User regular
    I backed up the dropbox app from my phone, put it on my comp, connect the Fire, transferred it over and installed that bitch. Works great.

    I've done that with a handful of apps so far, works mostly pretty good.

    Yeah you can just turn off app protection, download it from Dropbox, and install it.

    Works about how I expected, but I'm annoyed that I can't find a way to transfer Dropbox files into my docs/whispersync. I guess that's par for the course with these sorts of apps though?

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  • Skoal CatSkoal Cat Registered User
    I read some disparaging reviews of the Fire today. Part of me just doesn't believe it. Maybe they didn't update the firmware? Maybe they aren't using the Fire the way Amazon intended, but rather the way they think it should be used?

    ceres wrote: »
    Skoal Cat is correct.
  • XeddicusXeddicus Registered User regular
    Skoal Cat wrote:
    I read some disparaging reviews of the Fire today. Part of me just doesn't believe it. Maybe they didn't update the firmware? Maybe they aren't using the Fire the way Amazon intended, but rather the way they think it should be used?

    Tons of reviews keep comparing it to tablets that cost twice or even 3 times as much. No shit it's weaker/only on par than those. They should be comparing it to the Nook Color/Tablet and that's about it.

    "For no one - no one in this world can you trust. Not men. Not women. Not beasts...this you can trust."
  • KambingKambing Registered User regular
    Dunno. I sold my 1st gen ipad to pick one of these up. Smaller, does less, but all I need is a music player, occasional web browser, and something that renders academic PDFs correctly. Works for me.

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  • Two Headed BoyTwo Headed Boy Registered User regular
    Skoal Cat wrote:
    I read some disparaging reviews of the Fire today. Part of me just doesn't believe it. Maybe they didn't update the firmware? Maybe they aren't using the Fire the way Amazon intended, but rather the way they think it should be used?

    Would you have them review it any other way?

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  • Skoal CatSkoal Cat Registered User
    I'd prefer it, yes...

    ceres wrote: »
    Skoal Cat is correct.
  • Two Headed BoyTwo Headed Boy Registered User regular
    You'd prefer they review a product in manner dictated by the manufacturer as opposed to as how people would actually use the product.

    K.

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  • DarmakDarmak Godking of the Snerkywizards Registered User regular
    You'd prefer they review a product in manner dictated by the manufacturer as opposed to as how people would actually use the product.

    K.

    Would you have someone review a fork poorly because they were trying to use it like a spoon?

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  • Two Headed BoyTwo Headed Boy Registered User regular
    Not at all the same. It's like telling someone not to review a fork by eating with it.

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  • AbbalahAbbalah Registered User regular
    Just goot a Fire as a birthday gift. Typing on it isn't phenomenal, but it's functional. Biggest complaint by far is the carousel. Sits on the home screen, stores everything you've ever looked at or opened kn the device with no option to clear or remove anything and mismatched differently-sized icons to boot. It is...infuriating.

  • Skoal CatSkoal Cat Registered User
    Not at all the same. It's like telling someone not to review a fork by eating with it.

    No, the fork analogy was accurate with my sentiments. They seem to want it to be a fully functional mobile computer and less a digital media companion.

    ceres wrote: »
    Skoal Cat is correct.
  • Two Headed BoyTwo Headed Boy Registered User regular
    That's not what I've read in any of the reviews. From what I've read, it simply isn't good at what it does. As Will Smith (of Tested) put it when someone said it wasn't fair to compare it to an iPad, "Bad is bad."

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  • AutomaticzenAutomaticzen Registered User regular
    edited November 2011
    It's not bad, but it's not great. A solid 6 or 7 out of 10 for $200. If you want to do more and got the cash, buy an iPad. Web browsing has worked fine for me after the firmware update (and I keep the 'acceleration option off), and I note many people in the comments there noted their browsing experience wasn't anywhere near as bad as listed in the Tested review. If anything, my large problem with the Fire is it's rather spartan and there are definite odd choices Amazon made like the Item Carousel.

    And I find myself missing Swype, but that's been the case on anything that doesn't have Swype.

    Josh T at The Verge pretty much mirrors my thoughts on it.
    http://www.theverge.com/2011/11/14/2560084/kindle-fire-review
    Still, there's no question that the Fire is a really terrific tablet for its price. The amount of content you have access to — and the ease of getting to that content — is notable to say the least. The device is decently designed, and the software — while lacking some polish — is still excellent compared to pretty much anything in this range (and that includes the Nook Color). It's a well thought out tablet that can only get better as the company refines the software. It's not perfect, but it's a great start, and at $200, that may be all Amazon needs this holiday shopping season.

    The funny thing I find is most of the things said about the original iPad by owners in defense of why it was fine compared to netbooks are popping up in discussions of the Fire compared to the iPad. The "I only use it for..." commentary.

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  • Two Headed BoyTwo Headed Boy Registered User regular
    Did people really say that? Because netbooks are terrible. I really hope the Fire gets better, because I really love the concept, but I don't want to settle for mediocre.

    One more Will Smith quote, though, which I found rings true for every sort of product:
    I hate watching people rationalize buying mediocre products, simply because they made poor preorder decisions.

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  • Mr_RoseMr_Rose Registered User regular
    What happened to netbooks anyway? I don't think I've seen one for sale in a year...

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  • CyvrosCyvros Look behind you, a three-headed monkey!Registered User regular
    edited November 2011
    Man, I have a netbook (also, I work in an Australian tech retailer which still carries netbooks). I had to change mine to Chromium OS and stick an SSD in there to stop it from being dead slow (imagine my surprise when the SSD did actually make everything eleventy times faster). I might've gone for a Fire or a Nook Tablet if it weren't for the fact that I'm doing NaNoWriMo and physical keyboards are the bestest for writing.

    Cyvros on
  • Medium DaveMedium Dave Registered User regular
    It's a good device, but not great. It's an awesome bedside thing. The problem is, and this is the problem with most tablets for me, I have 6 other devices in my house that do the same thing. In public, I have one, my phone. I already suckle at the Amazon teat with my Prime account, so I get that added bonus. I like having a backlit Kindle thing. I like being able to watch the Iron Giant before I go to bed. But I don't need it. Is it bad? No. For $200 it's a damn steal. But if you just want to read books, get a Kindle. If you want a hardcore tablet, get something else. If you just want to consume some media, it's do fine.

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  • Jubal77Jubal77 Registered User regular
    edited November 2011
    A few days using the device and there are a wealth of improvements that I see could be made but for $200 this thing is 8 or 9 out of 10 easy. The improvements that i see need to be made would be screen sensitivity adjustment bar, apps built for the kindle and not upscaled or browser based (sound familiar?), easier ways to manage content to the device from the cloud, and alot of nit picking stuff like being able to skip or pause or whatever a song playing without going into the app, not having the screen come on when you plug it in, etc. I do have to say that the device can slow down but that doesn't bother me. If that is a thing that bothers you you might want to wait for gen 2. Also if you HAVE to have HD? Gen 2.

    As an early adopter I wasnt expecting perfection. It would be silly to do so. I am happy with my purchase and the Fire fits my Tablet needs as I feel it would 90% of other tablet users. It requires refinement but that should come.

    Jubal77 on

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  • AutomaticzenAutomaticzen Registered User regular
    Did people really say that? Because netbooks are terrible. I really hope the Fire gets better, because I really love the concept, but I don't want to settle for mediocre.

    It's definitely a 1.0 product.
    Mr_Rose wrote:
    What happened to netbooks anyway? I don't think I've seen one for sale in a year...

    Died on the vine. Manufacturers are now trying ultrabooks, (read: MacBook Air clones).

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  • sir_pinch-a-loafsir_pinch-a-loaf Registered User regular
    Anybody tried the Kindle Touch yet? I'm wondering if that would be preferable to the new plain ol' Kindle. I'm looking to get my first one for Xmas, now that the library lending is in effect.

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  • Jubal77Jubal77 Registered User regular
    Did people really say that? Because netbooks are terrible. I really hope the Fire gets better, because I really love the concept, but I don't want to settle for mediocre.

    It's definitely a 1.0 product.

    Agreed. It has alot of potential but the Fire is indeed a 1.0 product. But that is the way the Tech Arena works. Now let's hope that Amazon gets enough ROI to refine the product as needed.


    The earth is the mother of all people, and all people should have equal rights upon it.
    Chief Joseph
  • Mr_RoseMr_Rose Registered User regular
    Jubal77 wrote:
    Did people really say that? Because netbooks are terrible. I really hope the Fire gets better, because I really love the concept, but I don't want to settle for mediocre.

    It's definitely a 1.0 product.

    Agreed. It has alot of potential but the Fire is indeed a 1.0 product. But that is the way the Tech Arena works. Now let's hope that Amazon gets enough ROI to refine the product as needed.

    Like with a reflective colour display instead of emissive. There are a bunch of technologies to choose from now and they ought to be mature enough for mass production by the time the Fire is due for a refresh.

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  • Medium DaveMedium Dave Registered User regular
    Jubal77 wrote:
    A few days using the device and there are a wealth of improvements that I see could be made but for $200 this thing is 8 or 9 out of 10 easy. The improvements that i see need to be made would be screen sensitivity adjustment bar, apps built for the kindle and not upscaled or browser based (sound familiar?), easier ways to manage content to the device from the cloud, and alot of nit picking stuff like being able to skip or pause or whatever a song playing without going into the app, not having the screen come on when you plug it in, etc. I do have to say that the device can slow down but that doesn't bother me. If that is a thing that bothers you you might want to wait for gen 2. Also if you HAVE to have HD? Gen 2.

    As an early adopter I wasnt expecting perfection. It would be silly to do so. I am happy with my purchase and the Fire fits my Tablet needs as I feel it would 90% of other tablet users. It requires refinement but that should come.

    While I completely understand, respect and feel more people should adopt the, "Bad is bad," attitude to, well, everything...it's two hundred goddamn dollars. And it's not even bad, it's just early and a little undercooked. For thousands of people, my girlfriend included, this is exactly what they want and need. She wants to read pdfs and textbooks and books and surf the web and use foreign language training apps and it'll totally do that. But there are other, more tech savvy folk who could use something more.

    You can pause the song, I THINK, by tapping the top to bring down the settings and hit the pause button. When I plug it into my computer, it gives me a USB screen. I'll bet 10 bucks that by the next update, I'll be able to pull more shit from Amazon cloud. I would like that. But, until then, I have Dropbox, which I love.

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  • ElinElin Registered User regular
    edited November 2011
    Anybody tried the Kindle Touch yet? I'm wondering if that would be preferable to the new plain ol' Kindle. I'm looking to get my first one for Xmas, now that the library lending is in effect.

    I have not used the Touch so I'm going to base what I'm about to say off of the Fire and the app on my phone. The Touch doesn't have physical page turn buttons. I'm not sure about other people but I'm not fond of that at all. I find that I have many more accidental page turns on my Fire/app than my Kindle Keyboard. The keys really are placed just perfectly for the most comfort (for me).

    And if when you say the "new" Kindle meaning the 80$ Kindle, I will make sure I say what I do every time, please be aware the battery has half the life of the Keyboard/Touch. Now, it doesn't mean the battery is shit, it's just that it's roughly 15 hours of continuous reading vs. 30 hours (with wifi and 3G disabled).

    Also, between the Touch and the Kindle Keyboard 3G. The Touch 3G browser only supports Whispersync and Wikipedia, the Kindle Keyboard 3G can surf to any website your little heart desires. Not well of course, but some people find it useful to be able to check email from the Kindle and such.

    Elin on
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  • DoctorArchDoctorArch Curmudgeon Registered User regular
    Something I was wondering when I read theverge.com review of the Fire.
    "BECAUSE THE FIRE IS ON ANDROID 2.3, MANY OF THE APPLICATIONS OFFERED FEEL LIKE GLORIFIED PHONE APPS"

    I haven't played around with the iPad, but isn't this really the case with the iPad as well?

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