Happy Thanksgiving

Hard to believe time has flown all the way to Thanksgiving already. There’s so much to talk and write about and never enough time to do it all. Let’s pause for a moment and tally all that we have to be thankful for. Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

The Kindle Fire Is Here! My Unboxing and Initial Impressions

The Amazon Kindle Fire was officially released to the world today. Amazon however decided to screw me on my preorder and ship it late next week, since they clearly decided not to send pre-orders out early to make it arrive on release day… Irritation aside, I decided to buy one from Best Buy and deal with the late arrival later. So, what do I think so far? Well, It’s a big box, and there’s very little in it. You get the tablet and a power cable, and a little card telling you how turn it on. The build quality of the device is pretty good, it feels solid, but aesthetically it’s pretty plain. The face of the device has no buttons, and on the bottom of the device is a lone power button, next  to a micro-usb slot and headphone jack. The power button is the only physical button on the device. On the opposite end of the device are two slots for speakers. 

Upon boot up the Kindle Fire goes through the usual setup steps, Time Zone, Wireless Network and Amazon account. Once done, you’re taken to the Kindle’s main UI, which is a carousel of items. The UI is very simple and streamlined for service the content that’s in your Amazon account. Immediately, I was able to see all the books I own in my Kindle library, however, the books were not available right away, since they’ve not been downloaded to the device. Clicking on a book though will prompt for download, which occurs pretty quick. Once downloaded, you’re ready to read. 

In comparison to the HTC Flyer, another 7″ Android Tablet, the Kindle Fire is roughly the same size and weight. Physical size is almost the same, but the Flyer is rounded, so it appears slightly thinner than the Fire. I won’t go into a detailed review, since there are some nice reviews already out there, but feel free to look at my video below for my initial impressions. I’ll definitely have more to talk about once I get a little more cozy with the device. So, far I’m going to say that this IS NOT an iPAD killer, nor does it aim to be. So, I think it’s silly to compare the two devices. Also, I think it’s premature to compare this to other Android Tablets, since this isn’t designed as a general purpose tablet. It is designed to aid in the consumption of Amazon services. Ok, rant over. Enjoy the video, and please leave a comment.

Here are some links to some good reviews:

Returned from the Voices That Matter – Boston – 2011

I returned late last night from the Voices That Matter IOS development conference in Boston. It was one the best conferences I’ve gone to in recent memory. The conference isn’t a large venue; hosting about 200 or more attendees, with two tracks on various IOS topics. It was this smaller size that I got to meet some great developers. I learned a lot, and I’m currently in the process of trying to digest it all into a trip report. So, stay tuned for that.

Nook Tablet – Amazon’s Competition by Barnes and Noble

I knew it was around the corner, Barnes and Noble finally announced today its follow up to their Nook Color. The creatively named Nook Tablet. I’ve been wondering what they had up their sleeves, since I figure they couldn’t just sit on the sidelines and let Amazon roll over them with their Kindle Fire. So, does it hold up? Will it give Amazon a run for their money? Read on, and let me share my thoughts.

Contine reading

IOS 5 Battery Drain, Thoughts of Android Fragmentation, and Windows Mobile

Engadget reported yesterday that an IOS bug was discovered that seems to be responsible for poor battery life found by many iPhone 4S users. Luckily for me though, it seems that I’ve not run into any major battery problems, but I must admit that I’ve not experienced the improved battery life Apple promised in the 4S. Apple has committed to fixing the issue with a software patch in the coming weeks, which is good news. But this bug report isn’t the real reason why I’m writing this blog article.

Contine reading