I was excited when I first heard the Kindle Fire will be released in the UK. It was a shame that they did not release the first version in the UK but that was understandable as the Amazon on-line content ecosystem was close to non existent then. This review is not on hardware, this is for the ecosystems they supply as now that is the reason you buy the product. They are content consuming devices rather than content creation devices like a laptop or computer.
Firstly the Google apps. It has become larger and larger from my first experience of android app store back on my first LG android 2.2 phone. In 2009, there was 16,000 apps in the original android store. Now in 2012 there are 600,000 apps in there new and improved Google Play Store. The play store has a lovely interface on the web and on the nexus 7 and most of the apps are free and great.
The Amazon app store was release in the UK about a month ago and I have using it on the nexus 7 since it open. The interface is not tablet optimized, feels more like a mobile version of the site. There are over 50,00 apps in this store which is incomparable to the play store. But Amazon has an advantage over Google, free app a day. This may not sound like a swing to you but to me, free is always good. I really like the idea that one app a day is free (every day is chosen). The first free app I downloaded from this free app a day was Who wants to be a millionaire? It was a very good app indeed and I think that if the Amazon app store has more apps, it could surpass the Play Store.
WINNER Google, Just about.
The Google play book store is very weak. I do not like the range of books available and it just feels like a rough, quickly bundled store. There are few words on this one as it only needs few words.
Amazon on the other hand with the kindle store has the strongest book store I have ever seen. There are a few books of my interest not on there like Harry Houdini on Deception. But I bought that hard copy through Waterstones and I even had to wait 5 days to get it so i'm not fussed of its unavailability in the kindle store. I have the new kindle and have had it for a while so my usage of the kindle store is in excess. The free books are great and the priced books are priced very competitively. And if the UK get Kindle Serials and the availability of ebooks for it in Waterstones stores; Google could never Catch Up.
WINNER Amazon, by miles
Google play movies is very good for casual film watchers. £3.49 for a new film and £4.49 for the HD version. The quality of the stream is perfect for my BT infinity connection through the Google play movies app and YouTube. Never buffered at all even on a normal broadband connection. The range of movies is very good for a new store in the UK and the offers they supply like 99p movies in the bank holiday weekend. So overall its very nice indeed but no TV shows yet for the UK.
Amazon doesn't have a movie store as such but they do own LoveFilm which is a very good service indeed. From £6 a month you can stream unlimited movies and TV shows with an internet connection. So no downloading and watching offline. But they have a very large amount of movies and TV shows and works very well. I used to have a LoveFilm account which was very good indeed, I also had the discs come through as well. If you are a movie buff and like watching alot of movies, get a fire with a LoveFilm account.
WINNER Depends on how much you watch and where you watch it
This Ecosystem business is now the main reason you buy technology now. Amazon and Google only earm money on the content, not on the hardware. So depending on what you want, this is what you get.
IF YOU have an android phone and love their apps and have alot of money in the store, NEXUS 7 (as you can transfer apps)
IF YOU just like playing alot of games and social networking, NEXUS 7 (you get Amazon app store on google)
IF YOU like reading alot of books and enjoy reading, KINDLE TOUCH or PAPERWHITE (the e ink screen is so much better than a backlit screen)
IF YOU want, or have a LoveFilm account and you want to watch your films on the small screen, KINDLE FIRE
IF YOU like films but don't watch alot of them or like watching them offline, NEXUS 7