85
Engadget
Score
85

An all-around great product that's among the best in its category. You'll almost certainly be happy.

How we score

The Engadget Score is a unique ranking of products based on extensive independent research and analysis by our expert editorial and research teams. The Global Score is arrived at only after curating hundreds, sometimes thousands of weighted data points (such as critic and user reviews).

Engadget Review

Amazon Kindle Fire HDX review (8.9-inch): a high-end tablet at a mid-range price

Summary

The latest Fire tablet has some top-of-the-line specs and nice software enhancements, but Amazon's closed-off ecosystem will continue to be a sore spot for shoppers who prefer regular Android.

from $349.99+
Pros
  • Great screen
  • Strong performance
  • Mayday tech support and other helpful software features
Cons
  • No Google Play access
  • $80 more expensive than its predecessor
Amazon Kindle Fire HDX review (8.9-inch): a high-end tablet at a mid-range price

It's worth noting just how far Amazon has come since the early days of the Fire line. With the first generation, it was tough to see the tablet as anything more than a content-delivery device designed to keep users locked into the Kindle ecosystem. It was an uninspired bit of hardware that seemingly arrived off the same factory line as the BlackBerry PlayBook. Granted, Amazon's new HDX tablets still aren't the sexiest devices around, but the company's taken great pains to ensure they're some of the best. That means a stellar screen, some zippy internals and a slimmed-down body. Starting at $379 for the 8.9-inch model, the price has come along for the ride as well. It's hardly expensive, but we've long since stopped using the word "budget" to describe it.

Still, Amazon's managed to keep pricing down thanks to its content-centric business model, which assumes you'll continue buying stuff long after you open the box. This comes with some drawbacks, of course -- namely, an ecosystem that's far more closed-off than regular Android would be. But as long as you're stuck with Fire OS, the company's going to do what it can to provide the best experience possible with the addition of some compelling features. Does all that add up to a truly competitive device? Or has Amazon strayed too far from its budget roots?

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Scores

Engadget

85
 

Breakdown

Battery life
9.2
Display
9.7
Portability (size / weight)
9.3
Features
7.0
Storage capacity
8.0
View All Scores

Specs

Kindle

Form factor
Tablet
Operating system
Android
Camera (integrated)
yes
Storage type
Internal storage
Maximum battery life
Up to11 hour
View Full Specs

Specs

Kindle

Form factor
Tablet
Operating system
Android
Camera (integrated)
yes
Storage type
Internal storage
Maximum battery life
Up to11 hour
View Full Specs
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