Amazon Fire HD 8 (2020)
Amazon’s new Fire HD 8 tablet updates the previous model with important hardware features including a refined design, a faster processor, USB-C charging and a longer battery life. At $90, it’s an easy sell as a living-room slate -- a device that everyone in the family can use to watch videos, play mobile games and browse the web. It can also double as a makeshift Echo device thanks to Show Mode and hands-free Alexa. The biggest drawback is Amazon’s Fire OS, which constantly pushes the retailer’s products and services in your face.
- Refined design
- New USB-C charging
- Decent performance
- Hands-free Alexa
- Long battery life
- Still no Google apps
- Some lag time when switching between apps
- Most useful for those who use a lot of Amazon products/services
Fire HD 8
- Critic Reviews (10)
- User Reviews (6)
- 78AVERAGE CRITIC SCORE10 ReviewsLaptop Magazine70The Amazon Fire HD 8 has budget-friendly specs, so squash your iPad expectationsThere’s a reason why this slate is so cheap. Amazon, like a twisted, genius mastermind, has somehow managed to convince countless consumers to spend money on an advertisement-heavy trap -- er, I mean “tablet” -- to get ‘em hooked on Amazon Prime. For someone like me (a non-Amazon Prime subscriber), the Fire HD 8 tablet simulates the feeling of walking through Times Square and being panhandled to death.PC Mag70A tablet to navigate Amazon's walled gardenDon't buy the 7-inch Fire, which has inadequate RAM; if you're getting a small Amazon tablet, get this one. (There's also the aforementioned Fire HD 8 Plus that adds more RAM and wireless charging, which we'll review soon.) But I feel like the value equation has wobbled as Amazon's Appstore continues to lack important apps, and Amazon has made it harder to load apps from other sources.Android Authority80How good can a $90 tablet be?If you love shopping, watching video, reading, listening to music, and flipping through magazines using Amazon’s services, the Fire HD 8 will do all those things acceptably well. Granted, any other tablet will work just as well, but most will cost more and their UIs are not made to make the Amazon experience as seamless.Android Central80Goldilocks returns to claim her prizeThe Amazon Fire HD 8 won't blow anyone away, but it's not supposed to. It's designed to be durable, affordable, and flexible for individuals or families, and it gained the necessary features to make it a no-brainer upgrade over previous Fire and Android tablets.TechRadar70Amazon's middle-sized tablet gets an upgradeThe Amazon Fire HD 8 is a tablet designed for people who are dedicated users of the company’s entertainment offerings, with the tablet working well as a portable media system. However, it’s not a huge upgrade from its 2018 predecessor, with only a few tweaks, so unless you think you’ll make the most of the extra storage and faster charging on offer here, you may not need this newer model.Good Housekeeping80Is Amazon's latest 8-inch tablet better than previous versions?Compared to other tablets on the market, this won’t blow you away when it comes to speed. The camera is disappointing, as it doesn’t take detailed images, and...you will see adverts and sponsored screensavers when your device goes to sleep and when you wake it up again.TrustedReviews70Amazon Fire HD 8 ReviewIf you’re after a cheap tablet, maybe for the kids, or something solely for watching media on your commute this is a good pick. Its screen is fair, the build quality is fine and there’s plenty of storage. While it doesn’t feel incredibly fast, it has enough power to run Amazon’s UI and play most available games. Plus having Alexa on a tablet is a nice touch.Android Police80The good, cheap Android tablet Google won't buildThe new Fire HD 8 isn't a hardware powerhouse, but for $90, there's not a whole lot missing that you could reasonably expect at this price point. It handles media playback, games, and web browsing without a problem, and the USB Type-C port is a nice upgrade from previous Fire HD 8 tablets.Expert Reviews100The best budget tablet just got betterOnce again, Amazon has cooked up a fantastically priced tablet with its newest Fire HD 8. The 2018 model was already a five-star product, so Amazon's decision to boost performance, extend the battery life and add USB-C charging for 2020 was always going to lead to another recommendation.Stuff80Stoking the FireIt’s capable enough to tackle everyday tasks, offering decent battery life, impressive speakers and reassuring build quality -- all tied together by Alexa’s assistance. But there are several caveats. Screen quality is average, performance mediocre and there’s no longer support for a Charging Dock, which means it can’t meaningfully stand in for an Echo Show. More fundamentally, it only makes sense if you’re a Prime subscriber.
- 82AVERAGE USER SCORE6 ReviewsBoFiS80October 2, 2020Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!Best Amazon Fire tablet they've released yet, especially at this size. It has managed to run any app we have tried, and was pretty easy to install the Google Play Store on it to then get access to a proper YouTube app, etc. Only complaint right now is that certain streaming apps, like HBO Max and Disney+ do not allow or show the Chromecast icon on this tablet, even if the same apps are able to cast from my phone. Luckily Netflix and YouTube are smarter and can cast just fine.We have the kids edition, which comes with a very nice bumper case. We have used this for many many Skype calls to our daughter's grandparents and the battery life is also decent.MIGUEL60October 2, 2020Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!The software is terrible and there is not screen shareBennett80October 1, 2020Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!The Amazon-centric limitations can be readily overcome by installing free Android Google-Play Store software. A process that is explained in Youtube videos and here, e.g., https://liliputing.com/2020/06/how-to-install-google-play-on-the-amazon-fire-hd-8-2020.html. Tthe only down side I encounter in this very inexpensive tablet is very slow updating of web pages. As a book reader it's fine, the built in email app is serviceable and the extra Android software lets me load many apps unavailable in the Amazon store.Dave90October 1, 2020Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!Great bang for the buck! I got this for my son and it's perfect for browsing and playing games. I did flash the Google play store onto it and use nova launcher essentially turning it into a standard android tablet. It plays Nintendo 64 games at full speed and makes a great little retro gaming rig.kepstein90October 1, 2020Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!Best value tablet in any form. Pros: (1) Price - you won't find a tablet of this quality anyway near this price; (2) great form factor for slipping in your (man) purse on your way out the door; (3) screen is clear and bright (enough) for use anywhere other than in direct sunlight; (4) battery life is really good for a tablet this size, particularly if you run screen below maximum brightness; (5) lightweight; (6) believe it or not, the bezel is a feature at this size as makes the tablet easier to hold without accidental screen touches; (7) side loading Google Play Store makes this a fully functional Android Tablet that operates smoothly with every app I've loaded; (8) Show Mode is a bonus that turns your tablet into an Alexa Device when docked -- and any vertical wireless charger can be used as a dock, so you don't need any special docking equipment. Cons: (1) plastic is utilitarian - you're not going to get any envious looks when using the device; (2) ads are a little annoying, although you can buy an ad-free device -- frankly you'll get used to ads and won't notice them all that much; (3) screen refresh rate is low (what do you expect for the price?), so interface is not smooth; (4) don't expect to game on this device, it can't handle most modern games. Frankly, I like this little device a lot and use it almost every day, not as often as my phone, but more often than my iPad.Matthew90October 1, 2020Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!After realizing that the Spotify web player is not capable of streaming maximum quality, I got the Fire 8 to serve as a music player while at work where the desktop app is blocked. I listen to music through a ten year old USB amp/DAC and I was hoping that the Fire would be able to output to it. To my pleased surprise, a USB C adapter allowed me to plug the Fire into my old amp, which was instantly recognized by the Fire as an audio output device. I was impressed that it worked when the amp is much older than the USB-C standard. That is literally all I use the Fire for. The screen is perfectly nice enough for glancing at when I want to know what song is playing. The wireless charging is also great, I just leave it on a Qi stand when I'm done with it and it's back to 100% the next day.I leave this as a 90 rating rather than 100 just because it's a little bit slow and low-resolution when you're used to smartphones with much higher specs. In conclusion, if you're looking for a tablet JUST to play music through headphones, this is a great option.
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