Amazon Rumored To Release Next-Gen Kindle Fire Next Month
June 27, 2012

Amazon Rumored To Release Next-Gen Kindle Fire Next Month

John Neumann for

You might want to wait a little longer to purchase that Kindle Fire you've had your eye on as a new report indicates that Amazon is putting the finishing touches on a new model, writes Angela Moscaritolo for PC Magazine. Although Amazon has not confirmed the story,  the online retailer is reportedly eyeing July 31 for a Kindle Fire 2 launch event.

DigiTimes cites sources in the “upstream supply chain” and mentioned that Amazon would be reducing the price of the current Kindle Fire to $149. It also speculated that Amazon´s long-rumored larger tablet is still on hold but that new e-ink Kindles with integrated lighting were expected to be released alongside the next generation Kindle Fire.

The online retail giant announced its original 7-inch Android-powered Kindle Fire last September and began shipping them to customers in November. While it could maintain a similar timeframe for its next-gen Kindle Fire, a summer launch is more likely as it would allow the device to compete with other back-to-school shopping sales.

Kindle device sales are reportedly ebbing and with Apple launching the next generation iPhone early this fall along with a new iPod Touch and possibly even its own 7-inch iPad, the pressure will be on for tablets of all price points to perform and sell well.

The new tablet is expected to have a rear-mounted camera and physical volume-control buttons after complaints about the Fire´s on-screen volume controls. No word on Bluetooth capability or what processor will power the device. Also, no details on Amazon attempting to subsidize the cost of the new Kindle Fire with an ad-supported Special Offers version.

Nook Tablet, Samsung Galaxy Tab and others are offering affordable, feature-rich tablets in the small-tablet form factor. Lenovo, for example, is hoping to move out its older IdeaPad A1 for $149.99. Barnes & Noble´s Nook Simple Touch, which has been on the market for a couple of months, sells for $139. Amazon is expected to also introduce a new Kindle Touch at a lower price point, reports David Carnoy for CNET.

Microsoft has also jumped into the tablet game with its announcement of its own, home-grown Surface tablet that is expected to debut later this year operating with iterations of Windows 8, writes Salvador Rodriguez for LA Times.