September 6th 2012 9:56 am

Heads up! A newer version of this product has been announced!

79

A Trojan horse for Amazon's media store, not that that's a bad thing

79

Even if you step up and pay the extra $15 to disable ads on your Kindle Fire HD, you can never and will never shake the feeling that this is less a tablet and more of a tool for shopping -- a Trojan horse that's let into your home thanks to its low price and then unleashes a legion of must-buy items to completely compromise any walls you've built around your budget. If you can get past that decidedly subsidized feeling, you do have a compelling package in your hands. The HD is fast, has a nice design, a beautiful screen, proper stereo speakers and, of course, oodles and oodles of premium content. For casual users looking for an inexpensive, yet powerful tablet, the Kindle Fire HD belongs at the top of your shopping list. But, for those looking to do more, and do more rapidly, the Nexus 7 is still the king of this diminutive hill.

Critic reviews

7.6
17 reviews
  • Features
    7.8
  • Display
    8.8
  • Battery life
    8.0
  • Ease of use
    6.6
  • Storage capacity
    7.9
  • Design and form factor
    7.8
  • Portability (size / weight)
    7.3
  • Durability
    8.1

sort by

User reviews

7.8
15 reviews
8.0
Engadget Sep 11, 2012

For casual users looking for an inexpensive yet powerful tablet, the Kindle Fire HD should absolutely be at the top of your shopping list. But, for those looking to do more, and do more rapidly, the Nexus 7 is still the king of this diminutive hill.

Read the full review →
8.0
Laptop Magazine Sep 11, 2012

With its superb display, superior speakers and improved performance, the $199 Kindle Fire HD is easily one of the best 7-inch tablets available.

Read the full review →
8.0
Gizmodo Sep 11, 2012

It's a very well-made tablet, with an outstanding ecosystem behind it and enough perks to make it very appealing for the price. If you're already hooked on the Amazon ecosystem, by all means upgrade.

Read the full review →
8.0
Wired Sep 11, 2012

If you’re aligned with Amazon’s vision, and especially if you’ve fully immersed yourself in the company’s ecosystem — signing up for Prime, watching tons of streaming videos, reading stacks of books — you won’t do better than this.

Read the full review →
8.0
CNET Sep 11, 2012

With a beautiful screen, refined interface, and huge coffer of media consumption options the Amazon Kindle Fire HD is the Kindle Fire as it should have been.

Read the full review →
8.0
PC Mag Sep 11, 2012

The 7-inch Amazon Kindle Fire HD is a great way to consume your Amazon content on a small screen, but it's not the fastest or most flexible $200 tablet any more.

Read the full review →
8.0
AllThingsD Sep 11, 2012

Overall, I see the 7-inch Fire HD as a good value for those primarily interested in easily tapping Amazon’s large collection of content.

Read the full review →
7.0
New York Times Sep 11, 2012

The Kindle Fire HD models are attractive, confident viewers of movies, TV shows, Web pages and books. ... But “the best tablet at any price?” Hmmm. Somebody should put a call in to the Seattle water inspectors.

Read the full review →
6.0
Computerworld Sep 14, 2012

It offers significantly improved hardware, useful new features for watching movies and reading books, and the same access to the Amazon content universe as the original Kindle Fire. Those who buy into the Amazon entertainment ecosystem will welcome it.

Read the full review →
8.0
Mashable Sep 11, 2012

The choice, for now, is really between the Kindle Fire HD and Google’s $199 Nexus 7. Both are great, easy-to-use tablets that I could easily recommend but you will get twice the storage on the Kindle Fire HD. It’ll cost you another $50 for the 16GB Nexus 7.

Read the full review →
8.0
Pocket-Lint Nov 1, 2012

All in all, the Kindle Fire HD is a nice safe tablet. It's a better choice than some of the cheap tablets out there, but the fiercely competitive price of the Nexus 7 makes this a harder device to sell. The integration of the content is nicely done, but beyond that, you're a slight step behind.

Read the full review →
7.0
ABC News Sep 11, 2012

So, is this the best tablet at any price? No, but Amazon wouldn't be wrong if it said it was one of the best tablets at any price.

Read the full review →
7.0
Time Sep 11, 2012

For happy Amazon customers, though, a Kindle Fire HD could be just the ticket — assuming that Amazon thoroughly polishes the software, that is. Here’s hoping it’s in rock-solid shape by the time the 8.9″ model debuts right before Thanksgiving.

Read the full review →
7.0
TechHive Sep 15, 2012

The Kindle Fire HD is a tremendous improvement over its predecessor, and has a sharp, pleasing display. However, its heavy integration with Amazon's services is a strength, but also a limitation.

Read the full review →
8.0
TechRadar Oct 13, 2012

For casual tablet users or those already knee-deep in Amazon's digital media abyss, the Kindle Fire HD is a fantastic option, especially at that entry price. It offers a simple and uncomplicated experience through and through, and is built to support the digital media it aims to sell you.

Read the full review →
8.0
TrustedReviews Oct 26, 2012

The Amazon Kindle Fire HD isn't for everyone. ... some tablet basics suffer, and some non-techy types may get confused by the idiosyncrasies of the interface and the divide between local and Cloud content. For those already signed-up to LoveFilm and Amazon Cloud Player, though, it's great.

Read the full review →
7.0
USA Today Sep 11, 2012

Amazon addressed many of the original's shortcomings. The processor is more robust, leading to a faster and more fluid experience. ... I like it, despite encountering a few snags and not getting near the 11 hours of battery life Amazon touts for mixed use, admittedly under a much harsher test.

Read the full review →
9.0
tatsumaki tatsumaki

For the money (and heavily dependent on what you're going to use it for) the Fire HD is a very nice product. Is it the best 7 inch tablet? Maybe not. But it does have a nice screen, great speakers and access to Amazon's Prime Video library, so streamers rejoice. Also, it's worth noting that if...

Read the full review →
8.0
bethsian25 bethsian25

The kindle fire HD is very good for people that spend a lot of time on Amazon, i do find the direct link to amazon store to be useful especially when you want to quickly buy something from them. Amazon also have a great amount of books to read on the kindle and i can just about read books in the...

Read the full review →
8.0
Outcast923 Outcast923

Overall the product is good for an Apple product. It lacks some of the features of the Nexus 7. It lacks USB and memory slots. It is great as a reader or for movies but is not a true "tablet". If you want a table go with the Nexus

Read the full review →
6.0
Anome Anome

The chief problem with the device, as I see it, is that half the Amazon services it is designed to deliver are not available outside the US. I can't get streaming video, and the free trial of Amazon Prime was completely useless to me. Also, not being able to (easily) load apps from the Google...

Read the full review →
9.0
Jean1979 Jean1979

For portability and ease of use, I would reccommend this highly as a first tablet. The price was the deciding factor since I got it for $139.00. Who can argue with that!!

Read the full review →
8.0
cgtracy cgtracy

Purchased one for my daughter and it works great for her using the Amazon FreeTime service. Good model, but does have limitations such as not supporting playback of local media (videos, music, etc.). Solid little tablet which could do much more if allowed by Amazon.

Read the full review →

How it stacks up

Instantly compare the Amazon Kindle Fire HD 7-inch side by side with some of the top devices on Engadget!

Compare these

Other Amazon tablets

Don't forget to check out these other devices by Amazon, you might find something good!

See all Amazon tablets