NOTE: This article is off-topic. That is, it does not concern anything to do with genealogy, DNA, or related topics normally found in this newsletter. However, I enjoy saving money and am quick to publish articles telling others how to save money or to use a high-tech device that I enjoy, regardless of the topic.
Looking for a new tablet computing device? Well, you can purchase an Apple iPad for $329 (US dollars) and up, depending upon options included. Or you can purchase an Amazon Fire 7 for $59.99. Your choice.
I own the previous version of the Amazon Fire 7 (not the newly-announced version) and must say that I am quite satisfied with it. I use it daily. To be sure, it is not “just as good as an iPad.” When compared to an iPad, several items are missing or have lower capabilities with the Amazon Fire 7. Even so, it meets my needs perfectly and does everything that I want to do with a tablet. The fact that it is about one-fifth the price of an iPad was my deciding factor.
The downsides of the Amazon Fire 7 (as I see them) include:
It has a 7-inch screen. That is small, not much bigger than a cell phone. Actually, I consider the small size to be an advantage, not a disadvantage. But many other people will probably have the opposite opinion.
The price of $59.99 is for the unit with 16 gigabytes of internal storage memory. I always seem to fill up almost any device I purchase so I usually buy the more expensive unit with more storage space. In the case of the Amazon Fire 7, that has a $20 higher price of $79.99. HOWEVER, unlike an iPad, the Amazon Fire 7 accepts microSD memory cards and an extra 16 gigabyte memory card is available (also from Amazon and elsewhere) for $4.99. Even higher capacity microSD cards are available at higher prices. Purchase the cheaper Amazon Fire 7 and also a microSD card. plug it in and you will instantly have 32 gigabytes (or even more if you purchase a larger storage microSD card). That strikes me as a more cost-effective option.
All Amazon tablets use the Amazon Play Store, not the normal Google Play Store that most Android devices use to install more applications. The Amazon Play Store unfortunately has far fewer available apps available than does the Google Play Store. However, there are dozens of online articles telling how to use the larger Google Play Store on Amazon devices. I converted my (older) Amazon Fire by following the instructions at https://www.androidpolice.com/install-play-store-amazon-fire-tablet/ and it worked perfectly. My device now obtains new apps from the much larger Google Play Store.
The new Fire 7 is available for preorder starting now and will begin shipping June 29.
NOTE: I am not compensated in any way for publishing this article. The folks at Amazon don’t even know that I am writing it. Whether or not you purchase an Amazon Fire 7 because of this article makes no difference to me: my financial impact will remain at zero. I simply enjoy the unit I have and want share the news with readers of this newsletter.
You can find the Amazon Fire 7 at https://amazon.com. It is the company’s newest device and is being promoted all over the web site. You won’t have any problem finding it.