PROS / Amazon backs this tablet with comprehensive support and a one-year warranty.
CONS / Low benchmark scoring shows performance slows down when multiple apps are running.
VERDICT / The Amazon Fire is a lightweight, compact, entry-level tablet that may not meet the performance demands of power users.
The Amazon Fire is among the most value-friendly tablet computers available, delivering basic functionality in a conveniently sized and easily palmable package. Under the hood, it's equipped with a 1.3-GHz ARM Cortex A7 processor and has an 8GB storage capacity. It runs on Amazon’s proprietary Fire OS.
Benchmark testing using Geekbench 3 showed the Amazon Fire tablet computer achieved a score of 1158. Under 3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited testing, the tablet scored 4494. Both of these benchmarks rank the Amazon Fire on the lower end of the spectrum with respect to Top Ten Reviews’ test averages of 3165 and 19601, respectively. These scores indicate potentially slow performance during gaming and multitasking; however, this tablet is capable of performing well when engaged in single applications.
Weighing a mere 0.68 of a pound, the Amazon Fire is lightweight, and its size of 7.5 x 4.5 x .40 inches also makes it very portable. You can increase the Fire's 8GB of internal storage to 128GB by inserting a microSD card. The added space can make it easier to store extra apps and media, in addition to photographs taken with the Fire's built-in, 2MP, rear-facing camera. Additionally, the tablet’s camera can record video in 720p HD. Its front-facing camera captures images at a resolution of 0.3MP.
Testing revealed the Amazon Fire’s battery life to be 6 hours and 30 minutes. Though not the poorest battery life compared to other tablets on our lineup, it's more than two hours below the average. Connectivity is limited to Wi-Fi, and there is no support offered for 4G, which could make roaming with this tablet challenging.
The Amazon Fire has a 7-inch screen, making it the most compact tablet in our entire lineup. The screen displays at a resolution of 1024 x 600 and has a display brightness rating of 284 nits, which is significantly lower than the Top Ten Reviews’ average of 354 nits.
Amazon offers a one-year warranty on the Fire, in addition to comprehensive support by phone, live chat, social media, and an online troubleshooting platform. Since the Fire is made and sold by Amazon, manufacturer support is readily available.
An ideal tablet computer for new adopters and non-power users, the Amazon Fire is a device capable of handling average web browsing, gaming and media play. What it lacks in top performance, Amazon makes up for with a lightweight and easy-to-carry design, not to mention its overall cost value.