Apple Welcomes Kindle Fire Tablet and More Android Fragmentation

Business Insider shares a portion of a research note issued today by Barclays analyst Ben Reitzes, who recently visited with Apple CEO Tim Cook and CFO Peter Oppenheimer in a meeting that included discussion of Amazon's new $199 Kindle Fire tablet based on Android.


According to the executives, Apple welcomes the entry of the Kindle Fire to the market for its ability to further fragment the Android ecosystem. While the Kindle Fire does utilize Android, it has been heavily modified by Amazon to integrate specifically with Amazon's products and services.

While the pricing at $199 looks disruptive for what seems to be the iPad’s most important rising challenge, the Amazon Fire – it is important to note that it could fuel further fragmentation in the tablet market—given it represents yet another platform. While compatible with Android, the Apps work with Amazon products. The more fragmentation, the better, says Apple, since that could drive more consumers to the stable Apple platform.

Reitzes notes that he believes Apple will eventually lower pricing on the iPad, but will not compromise on quality and customer experience to approach or match its competitors' pricing.

Apple and Amazon are approaching the tablet market from opposite perspectives, with Apple achieving significant profitability on the hardware while selling content and services at near break-even prices. Conversely, Amazon is said to be taking a loss on sales of the Kindle Fire, using the device to attract customers into its content and product ecosystem.

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
117 months ago
I see the Kindle as its own product and eco-system. Sure it runs Android, but I don't think of Android nor will most consumers - they'll just see Amazon (which is a winner for them).
Score: 53 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
117 months ago
I wouldn't consider this fragmentation. While that is a true problem of the Android ecosystem, the Kindle Fire isn't really Android in the sense most people would imagine. It's not designed to be a tablet computer, it's designed to be a handheld media player for Amazon content.

I'd imagine 90% of the people who buy this have no idea it has anything to do with Android.
Score: 31 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
117 months ago

Only thing is - the fire isn't trying to be the iPad.

And I don't think fragmentation plays into this at all.

The fire is a media consumption device - so as long as there's a good audio/video player + eReading software - most of the people buying it will be content. Sure there will be games and possible issues. But I think Apple is missing the mark on this product. I don't think anyone buying the Kindle is aware what software is on it - nor do they care. It's not the same as with phones where people want to know if they have 2.1, 2.3, etc on it (and to be honest - I think most of the general population doesn't care anyway). I know many people who have never updated their OS from the one that shipped with their phones. And I say that across the board whether they own iPhones or other devices.

I see the Kindle Fire more as "Amazon's tablet" rather than Amazon's "Android" tablet.
Score: 26 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
117 months ago

Yup. It's a sort of "divide and conquer" observation. Google is clearly going the route that Microsoft went down - and Apple rightly applauds this.


Poor Microsoft, and their 90% OS market share.
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
117 months ago
Kindle Fire can be successful because it's not an "Android Tablet", it's a Kindle Fire. It's unique to Amazon and it is part of the successful and well-known Kindle product line. It just happens to run Android.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
117 months ago
Only thing is - the fire isn't trying to be the iPad.

And I don't think fragmentation plays into this at all.

The fire is a media consumption device - so as long as there's a good audio/video player + eReading software - most of the people buying it will be content. Sure there will be games and possible issues. But I think Apple is missing the mark on this product. I don't think anyone buying the Kindle is aware what software is on it - nor do they care. It's not the same as with phones where people want to know if they have 2.1, 2.3, etc on it (and to be honest - I think most of the general population doesn't care anyway). I know many people who have never updated their OS from the one that shipped with their phones. And I say that across the board whether they own iPhones or other devices.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Samsung Mocks Apple for Ditching Power Adapters With iPhone 12 Lineup

Thursday October 15, 2020 11:51 am PDT by
Samsung on its social channels is mocking Apple for removing the power adapter from the iPhone 12 lineup and other iPhone models, pointing out the fact that the Samsung Galaxy smartphones continue to ship with a power adapter. "Included with your Galaxy," reads a Samsung Facebook post that features a picture of a power adapter. Apple notably is no longer providing power adapters or...

iPhone 12 Pro Pre-Orders Already Selling Out With Delivery Times Pushing Into November

Friday October 16, 2020 6:35 am PDT by
Apple today opened pre-orders for the 6.1-inch models of the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro through its website and the Apple Store app, and estimated delivery times are already slipping into November for select configurations in the United States. Customers ordering a SIM-free/Pacific Blue/128GB version of the iPhone 12 Pro, for example, are already facing an estimated delivery window of...

HomePod Mini Cable is Non-Detachable, Ends With USB-C Connector for Use With Included 20W Power Adapter

Friday October 16, 2020 12:45 pm PDT by
While not detailed in the tech specs, MacRumors can confirm that Apple's new HomePod mini features a non-detachable power cable that ends with a USB-C connector for use with the 20W power adapter included in the box. With the switch to USB-C, the HomePod mini could potentially be powered by a wider range of devices and peripherals, ranging from MacBooks to USB-C battery packs with enough...

Apple's New MagSafe Charger and Cases Begin Arriving to Customers

Saturday October 17, 2020 10:10 am PDT by
Apple's new MagSafe charger and cases have begun arriving to some customers earlier than expected, and images of the accessories have started to surface on Twitter. The photos provide a first look at the products in real-world use. As of writing, some MagSafe cases are also available for pickup at select Apple Stores in countries like the United States, Canada, and Germany. Filip...

New Google App Feature Lets You Hum a Song to Search for It

Saturday October 17, 2020 4:05 am PDT by
Google has added a new feature to its Search app that allows you to hum a song that's stuck in your head, and then use the company's machine learning algorithm to try and identify it. In the Google app or using the Google Search widget, tap the mic icon and say "what's this song?" or click the "Search a song" button. Then start humming the tune for 10-15 seconds. When you're done, the...

Brazilian Certifications Suggest iPhone 12 Mini Features 2,227mAh Battery and iPhone 12 Has 2,815mAh Battery

Friday October 16, 2020 1:08 pm PDT by
Apple's iPhone mini has the shortest battery life out of all the iPhones in the iPhone 12 lineup due to its small size, but Apple has not provided public information about the battery's capacity. A regulatory filing from Brazil, however, suggests the iPhone 12 mini has a battery capacity of 2,227mAh. The same regulatory information says the iPhone 12 features a 2,815mAh battery, which is...

Apple Offering Free AirPods With iPhone 11 Purchase in India as Part of Diwali Celebration

Friday October 16, 2020 12:35 pm PDT by
Apple today launched a new Diwali promotion in India that will see the company providing customers with a set of AirPods with the purchase of any iPhone 11 model. The new iPhone 12 models are not part of the promotion. Apple is offering the standard AirPods With Charging Case free with purchase, but customers can choose to upgrade to the AirPods with Wireless Charging Case or the AirPods Pro....

Apple Event to Unveil First Apple Silicon Macs Could Happen on November 17

Friday October 16, 2020 2:24 am PDT by
Apple will hold another digital event on November 17 to announce its first Apple Silicon powered Macs, according to frequent leaker Jon Prosser. Apple has already said that this year it intends to introduce the first Mac powered by an Apple Silicon chip instead of an Intel processor. One thing it hasn't revealed is the date it will be announced. According to Prosser's source, that date is No...

Apple Online Store Down Ahead of iPhone 12 and 12 Pro Pre-Orders

Thursday October 15, 2020 11:15 pm PDT by
Apple's online store is down ahead of iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro pre-orders, which are set to begin at 5:00 a.m. Pacific Time in the United States. "You're... early," reads the Apple Store message when attempting to visit the U.S. website. "Pre-order begins at 5:00 a.m. PDT. Enjoy the extra sleep." Apple used to do new device pre-orders at 12:01 a.m. Pacific Time, but since last year, has...

When You Can Pre-Order the iPhone 12 and 12 Pro in Every Time Zone

Thursday October 15, 2020 10:55 am PDT by
Pre-orders for the iPhone 12 and the iPhone 12 Pro are set to kick off on Friday, October 16 at 5:00 a.m. Pacific Time, which is a new launch time that Apple adopted as of last year. Apple is planning to make the new devices available in multiple countries around the world simultaneously, so we've made a guide to let MacRumors readers know when pre-orders will in their country. Pre-orders...