Author Topic: Amazon's Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90  (Read 4164 times)  

Offline German_Translator

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https://techcrunch.com/2016/09/08/fire-hd-8/?ncid=rss&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Techcrunch+%28TechCrunch%29

[...]
Just under a year after receiving its last meaningful upgrade, Amazon is refreshing the Fire HD 8 in a handful of ways, starting with the addition of Alexa functionality to the dirt-cheap slate, making this the first of its Fire tablets to get Amazon's own voice assistant, surprisingly enough. Users will be able to listen to music, get news, check the weather and more by talking into the tablet

The new Fire gets a larger 4,750 mAh battery, which promises up to twelve hours of life on a charge. RAM has been upgraded (though it's only at a paltry 1.5GB now) and storage has been doubled to either 16- or 32GB – not a ton, but you can upgrade that pretty substantially by way of a microSD slot.

The eight-inch display certainly isn't Amazon’s best with a 1280 x 800 resolution that works out to 189ppi. Of course that comes with the same caveat as the rest of the specs – this is a $90 tablet we're talking about here.

The tablet runs Fire OS 5, the latest version of Amazon's Android-based, content focused mobile OS and features your standard selection of Fire mainstays, like X-Ray, ASAP and Second Screen.

The new tablet is up for pre-order today, starting at $90 for the 16GB model. It'll start shipping September 21st.



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Offline Ann in Arlington

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Re: Amazon�s Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #1 on: September 08, 2016, 07:16:04 AM »
It's showing as available on Amazon:

New Fire HD 8

If you want the special offers off it'll cost you $15. You can also get more storage built in but as it has an SD card slot that seems probably not worth it.

The page also indicates that the Alexa part is 'Coming soon' and also talks about an OS update, 5.4 -- the current model has 5.3.1. It is possible the update will come to older models as well and will include Alexa. Of course, Alexa will only work on a Fire that has a microphone built in -- didn't think current models have one, but the comparison chart does show that both the Fire 7 and HD10 models have one, so there's that. I'll have to look more closely at my HD8, purchased last December.

Interestingly, I can't, as I've done in the past, go to my order for the HD8 I bought last year and get a link to the original product page.

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Offline booklover888

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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #2 on: September 08, 2016, 07:42:41 AM »
I found the product page for the previous gen (Which I got in Feb)

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B00UIE8YE2/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I'm jealous....would like the faster ram and bigger battery....but not going to get it, since my current Fire 8 is just fine. (I got the 16gb Tangerine for $99...so can't complain)
« Last Edit: September 08, 2016, 07:45:42 AM by booklover888 »

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Offline Lursa (aka 9MMare)

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Re: Amazon’s Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #3 on: September 08, 2016, 08:10:18 AM »
I have a 7" 2nd generation Fire HD so I'm thinking the new 8" for $89 will be well worth it, probably pay to take the special offers off too. I havent kept up so I'm surprised at the low price. The display on my older Fire HD is stunning so I dont think I can be disappointed by display. I"m so spoiled by my Kindle tho that I rarely read on it because it is so "heavy" (heavy being a relative term). I dont know how heavy that one is but surely this new slimmer design will be somewhat lighter. (I doubt specs for the old one are still out there.)

I'll finally have to look closer at the streaming services and offers Amazon has. I do Netflix now but Amazon may be worth it now. Not that there was/is anything wrong with the Amazon content, I just dont want to pay for 2. Can you download entire movies & TV shows onto these devices or not really? I dont mean just one or two, I mean 5-10 or more. When camping or traveling, I cant always stream.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2016, 07:57:04 AM by Lursa (aka 9MMare) »

Offline Scarpad

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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #4 on: September 08, 2016, 08:59:42 AM »
I've been eyeing the HD8 for awhile, now that they are enabling Alexa, and have slightly updated it, and dropped the price, i ordered one

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Re: Amazon�s Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #5 on: September 08, 2016, 09:53:11 AM »
I found the product page for the previous gen (Which I got in Feb)

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B00UIE8YE2/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I'm jealous....would like the faster ram and bigger battery....but not going to get it, since my current Fire 8 is just fine. (I got the 16gb Tangerine for $99...so can't complain)

That link has a different picture at the top . . . but when you scroll down the compare page is the same as when you go to the 'all new Fire HD8' page.

If you go to the technical details link in two different tabs, though, you can see the differences . . . which are fairly slight, in my opinion. 

Both say they have Alexa in the top writeup. The new one has a longer lasting battery; looks like the ram speed is about the same, though configured a bit differently and there's half a GB more on the new one. The screen resolution is the same.

The new one has a light sensor, which is not listed as being on the older model.

They use different words for the cameras so I can't tell how they compare.

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Offline lynnfw1

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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #6 on: September 08, 2016, 04:14:24 PM »
Will this be the only new tablet this year?  I like the new specs, but would prefer a larger screen.

Offline The Hooded Claw

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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #7 on: September 08, 2016, 05:46:42 PM »
Will this be the only new tablet this year?  I like the new specs, but would prefer a larger screen.

There's been no announcement. It is definitely possible before Christmas, but nobody outside Amazon knows yet.

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Offline jkingrph

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Re: Amazon�s Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #8 on: September 12, 2016, 01:26:43 PM »
Not knowing how to judge the specs, I have some questions.  The 2015model lists a quad core processor 2 at 1.5Ghz and two at 1.2 Ghz. and 1gb ram

The new 2016 is a quad core processor at 1.3Ghz across all four , plus 1.5 gb ram.

Will the constant speed processor with 50% more ram run faster and how much faster?  How does one determine a "speed" comparison for the two models?

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Re: Amazon�s Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #9 on: September 12, 2016, 03:56:26 PM »
Not knowing how to judge the specs, I have some questions.  The 2015model lists a quad core processor 2 at 1.5Ghz and two at 1.2 Ghz. and 1gb ram

The new 2016 is a quad core processor at 1.3Ghz across all four , plus 1.5 gb ram.

Will the constant speed processor with 50% more ram run faster and how much faster?  How does one determine a "speed" comparison for the two models?

I'm not enough of a techie to have a scientific/engineering opinion, but my opinion based on experience is that for the overwhelming majority of uses, you won't tell any performance difference between the two processors. You might if you do heavy-duty photo editing or hard-core gaming that involves leading edge intense graphics.

The extra RAM may be a help in some things, such as having multiple web pages open at the same time and switching back and forth.

People who are really interested in comparing systems use "benchmark" programs that run the phone or tablet through the wringer processing or displaying something. Unfortunately, the people who are into this don't usually pay attention to low-spec and unglamorous tablets such as the Fire. anandtech.com is worth looking at in general for this, but I doubt you'll find the Fire discussed there.

For me, the big difference besides price is that Amazon will probably support the later tablet with software upgrades and the like for longer. If you keep your tablet only a short time before trading up, this may not interest you. To be clear, everything I've written here is based on generic experience, I've never laid eyes on either of these tablets.
« Last Edit: September 12, 2016, 03:59:03 PM by The Hooded Claw »

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Offline Lursa (aka 9MMare)

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Re: Amazon’s Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #10 on: September 14, 2016, 09:34:59 AM »
https://techcrunch.com/2016/09/08/fire-hd-8/?ncid=rss&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Techcrunch+%28TechCrunch%29

[...]


The eight-inch display certainly isn’t Amazon’s best with a 1280 x 800 resolution that works out to 189ppi. Of course that comes with the same caveat as the rest of the specs – this is a $90 tablet we’re talking about here.


I love the display on my 2nd Gen 7" Fire HD.....do you think that this one will be lower quality? I'm very happy with that. (Dont remember that one's ppi)

Also, any idea if the cases for the 8" Fire HD 2015 will fit this new one? Is the frame the same?

Thanks.

**Update** Looking thru cases online I just saw one that specifically says it does NOT fit the 2016.
« Last Edit: September 14, 2016, 09:45:25 AM by Lursa (aka 9MMare) »

Offline mish

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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #11 on: September 17, 2016, 03:03:18 PM »
Does anyone know if the $90 price is just a pre-order price or will it stay that way after release on 9/21? 

Offline jkingrph

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Re: Amazon�s Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #12 on: September 20, 2016, 07:30:47 AM »
Notices said it was shipping Sept 21, I went ahead and ordered one and it shipped yesterday for delivery on Sept 21.

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Re: Amazon’s Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #13 on: September 22, 2016, 12:51:56 AM »
Mine came today and so far, so good...I like it. Still figuring out a few things. For instance, my 2nd gen Fire HD 7" had a Samsung/Amazon version of Swype for the keyboard and this one doesnt seem to. I checked the keyboard settings and it doesnt seem to be available.

And if anyone has advice on how to move/remove unwanted icons from the  Home screen, please let me know.

But speed and screen resolution are very very nice. Quickly found my 'sepia' setting for Kindle reading.

And bonus...the Finite "Tree of Love" case that I ordered and was scheduled for shipping 9/26-9/30 came today too, early, so I'm all set  :)

Update: there are several apps, most free, for Swype or similar for the keyboard. I downloaded one that works just fine.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2016, 06:49:36 AM by Lursa (aka 9MMare) »

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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #14 on: September 22, 2016, 06:11:00 AM »
I agree its a nice solid tablet, for the price the screen is fine resolution and image quality, it's not Ipad quality but its only a A$90 tablet and for that price its quite good.
I did'nt like the screen and resolution on the 10" tablet that needs a 1080p screen. I like how they got rid of the Glossy back and put a matte finish that is easier to grip and resists fingerprints.
I put a 128gb card in mine so its quite capable

Offline jkingrph

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Re: Amazon�s Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #15 on: September 22, 2016, 06:39:11 PM »
I wonder when they will release the fire os5.4 that is supposed  to be "coming soon"?

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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #16 on: September 22, 2016, 06:48:57 PM »
Mine came yesterday. I ordered the blue and they sent me the black. I'm not sending it back for an exchange because I'll be getting that Finite Tree of Life cover.

I thought it was supposed to put all my games and apps on this one during setup, but it didn't. No big deal. I just took about 10 minutes and downloaded them. I'll have to do the same for my books and audiobooks, I guess.

That extra inch in size takes a bit of getting used to, but I watch TV on my tablet a lot, so I think I'm going to end up enjoying it.

I'm not sure I'll spend the extra $90 for Alexa, although I just pre-ordered the DOT for $49.95. I think I'll wait to see how that works before I add it to my tablet.


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Offline Scarpad

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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #17 on: September 23, 2016, 06:26:10 AM »
not sure what you mean by an extra $90, the alexa update will be a free software or firmware update

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Re: Amazon�s Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #18 on: September 23, 2016, 05:03:46 PM »
$90, ie 89.99 is the price of the base model Kindle hd8, to include Alexa when it is available along with the new Fire 5.4 operating system.

Offline Gertie Kindle 'a/k/a Margaret Lake'

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Re: Amazon�s Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #19 on: September 23, 2016, 05:20:07 PM »
$90, ie 89.99 is the price of the base model Kindle hd8, to include Alexa when it is available along with the new Fire 5.4 operating system.

That's good to know.

I was surprised that there was no option to dictate a reply to a post. My 7" has that option.


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Offline Lursa (aka 9MMare)

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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #20 on: September 27, 2016, 01:16:46 AM »
I took my new 8" Fire HD on a flight today and watched almost 3 hrs of downloaded video. I'm still at 84% battery so I'm pretty impressed with that. The battery life on my 2nd generation HD Fire  was/is pretty poor.

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Re: Amazon�s Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #21 on: September 27, 2016, 12:50:35 PM »
Yeah Len Edgerdly on the Kindle chronicles was sending back the New 8 because he said the weight and poorer speakers were deal breakers, I usually listen with Headphones when I watch vids listen to music and I use Headphones.And I'll trade an ounce for the much better battery every time. I agree the HD8 could be louder but its but its ok

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Re: Amazon�s Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #22 on: September 27, 2016, 03:37:34 PM »
Yeah Len Edgerdly on the Kindle chronicles was sending back the New 8 because he said the weight and poorer speakers were deal breakers, I usually listen with Headphones when I watch vids listen to music and I use Headphones.And I'll trade an ounce for the much better battery every time. I agree the HD8 could be louder but its but its ok

Thanks for mentioning that about the speakers. I thought it was me.  :D


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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #23 on: September 28, 2016, 12:03:33 AM »
I thought the speakers were fine but was in mostly quiet environments. The quality was very good, even with ear buds. And they were loud enough in the fairly quiet places I listened without earbuds.

However I extensively researched good speakers in laptops last yr when I bought one and even with those that focus on sound or music, the speaker sound "level" is usually not great...meaning they dont get that loud. It's more a focus on sound "quality." When buying a portable DVD player, I read all the reviews from other buyers and most common complaint was that they werent loud enough. I think it's just a function of size and hard to fit big enough speakers in devices that get smaller and smaller. It's a big issue for me with the laptops since I do so many online meetings and need volume....and it's tough to find.

So I just assumed I'd need external speakers for the Fire anyway, as that's the way it is for so many other devices if you want 'volume'.

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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #24 on: September 28, 2016, 07:08:05 AM »
A couple of yrs  ago,  we were researching new laptops for a corporation.  The big push in the electronics industry is battery life...and every available space was used to maximize that.  It doesn't leave extra space for increasing speaker size.

So far I'm pleasantly surprised by the battery life in the new Fire... I was streaming Netflix last night & again saw solid results in usage.  Battery life is a priority for me,  since a tablet is a true mobile device for me,  used mostly on the go.

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Re: Amazon�s Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #25 on: September 28, 2016, 07:17:33 AM »
A couple of yrs  ago,  we were researching new laptops for a corporation.  The big push in the electronics industry is battery life...and every available space was used to maximize that.  It doesn't leave extra space for increasing speaker size.

So far I'm pleasantly surprised by the battery life in the new Fire... I was streaming Netflix last night & again saw solid results in usage.  Battery life is a priority for me,  since a tablet is a true mobile device for me,  used mostly on the go.

I think another consideration is that a lot of people probably don't listen to the tablet through the installed speakers. They either use earbuds or headphones, or connect an external speaker.

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Offline Scarpad

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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #26 on: September 28, 2016, 10:16:42 AM »
Yeah I think the battery life is a pleasant surprise because Amazon tablets have not been know for stellar Battery, this HD8 does have stellar BL

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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #27 on: September 28, 2016, 12:48:04 PM »
Yeah I think the battery life is a pleasant surprise because Amazon tablets have not been know for stellar Battery, this HD8 does have stellar BL

That's why I bought it. I use my tablet several hours a day and I'd would have to charge my 7" at least twice and then charge it overnight.


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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #28 on: September 30, 2016, 07:20:07 AM »
That's why I bought it. I use my tablet several hours a day and I'd would have to charge my 7" at least twice and then charge it overnight.

And now my Fire won't charge at all. The charging symbol is on but the charge keeps slipping away. I see a return in my future.


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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #29 on: September 30, 2016, 07:27:09 AM »
Uh oh. I think it's odd that there's no indicator light on the outside, like on my Kindle or phone, that shows it's charging, or fully charged.

THanks for the reminder to really 'kick the tires' and use it early on. I hope it works out for you. Amazon is really good about returns.

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Re: Amazon�s Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #30 on: September 30, 2016, 09:31:22 AM »
The 5th and 6th generation Fire hd8 has no charging indicator light.  You have to look at symbol on the upper right of screen to tell if it is charging.

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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #31 on: November 10, 2016, 05:02:28 PM »
OK so me and the hubby are thinking of getting the Fire 8HD 32GB model. We previously had a iPad 2. And last year I bought a Galaxy Tab A 9.7 with S Pen 16GB. Which has the same specs as the iPad 2. Will the Fire 8HD be a big upgrade? Also I noticed the price is $119.99 for it. I thought it was more money at one point. Is it on sale this week?



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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #32 on: November 24, 2016, 10:21:43 AM »
This tablet is on sale today for $30.00 off....$59.00.

That's an amazing deal for a really good tablet. I love mine...wish I could have taken advantage of this deal. I got mine without special offers tho.

Offline luvmykindle3

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Re: Amazons Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #33 on: January 01, 2017, 08:19:33 PM »
I got my Fire 8 for $59.99, on the sale. I ordered orange. It works great and the battery life is much better than that of my fire 6, so I will be selling that. The fire 8 works great, love it. The 7 was on sale during the holidays, I just could not find anyone I needed to buy one for LOL

Offline Chad Winters

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Re: Amazon�s Fire HD 8 gets upgraded with better specs and Alexa, for $90
« Reply #34 on: January 02, 2017, 08:29:25 AM »
I've been surprisingly happy with my Fire HD 8. Bought it on the 60 buck sale. I have an aging iPad2 but have not been able to bring to spend 800 bucks or so on a new one. I'm finding that I actually like the size of the 8 better than the iPad. The widescreen format is better than the ipad for videos. The resolution seems fine. Reading books on is great which sucks because my Oasis is being reduced to outdoors in the sun use only!

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