All the Amazon Fire Tablets, Reviewed
Amazon offers, perhaps, the best value in tablets as long, as you are willing to live with some compromises. The Fire series boasts more than acceptable specifications for light web browsing and movie watching. The tradeoff for the low prices is that the available software is somewhat limited, but that shouldn’t be a problem for most users.
Specs to Consider
One of the benefits (or drawbacks depending on how you look at it) of buying a Fire tablet is that Amazon makes it easy to choose which model you want. There are really only two necessary specifications to consider: screen size and storage.
The Fire tablets come in a choice of 7-, 8-, or 10-inch displays. The smallest size is fine for quick emails and reading books, but I recommend upgrading to the 8- or 10-inch model if you plan to watch movies or TV.
As for storage, most of the models come in a choice of 32 or 64 GB, which is on the low end. I own the 8- and the 10-inch Fire tablets and use them primarily for streaming, so it isn’t a significant consideration for me. However, if you want to download movies or games, keep in mind that the storage space will quickly fill up. If you plan to use your tablet as a daily driver, opt for the higher-end (but not much higher priced) model.
What You Should Know About Ad-Supported Models
The cheapest Fire tablets come ad-supported, which means that you are opting for a constant stream of messages from Amazon. I enjoy getting the little notifications and don’t find them too intrusive. However, if you suffer from information overload, you might want to spring for the one-time $20 fee to remove the ads from your device. You can also remove them after your purchase through the Amazon website, if you change your mind later.
How We Evaluated
As a technology writer with 20-plus years of experience, I’m always on the lookout for the latest and greatest when it comes to tablets. I’ve owned Amazon tablets for more than a decade and currently have several models in my drawer. I spent a dozen hours looking through reviews and experimenting with Amazon’s Fire series for this article. I considered screen size and quality, storage space, and cost while sifting through the lineup.
They’re powerful enough for binge-watching and web surfing but don’t cost a fortune.