Amazon’s range of cheap Fire tablets have regularly topped, or at least been a part of, our various recommendation lists. This is a testimony to the fantastic value the Fire slates offer across all screen sizes they come in — 7, 8, and 10 inches. They tend to be some of the best entertainment machines if you want something basic for your living room or dining table, and can even help keep your children busy for a while.
The company regularly refreshes its three Fire tablets that also come with their respective Kids Edition models designed especially for kids and their unique needs. Amazon recently updated its Fire HD 10, just a few months after launching the 2019 Fire 7, while the Fire HD 8 was last refreshed in 2018. This is everything you need to know about these budget tablets and their Kids Edition models that you should look at.
Amazon Fire HD 10
You’re bound to expect the best (conditions apply) from Amazon’s most expensive and newest tablet, and rightly so. In our review, the Fire HD 10 turned out to be a great device for its price and we’re left impressed with its overall performance. The 10-inch tablet is surprisingly good for casual gaming and catching up with your movies is fine as always. All this works mainly because the company has vastly improved the display quality, though its specs haven’t changed all that much.
What particularly stood out was its battery life that outperformed many of its rivals, and even the 2018 iPad Pro 11 in our standard test. When not actively using the tablet, you can use it as an Alexa screen, as the voice assistant can work hands-free. It comes running a forked version of Android 9 Pie with a heavy load of Amazon apps, though you have the option to install the Play Store using the details provided in the last section. All in all, at $150, the Fire HD 10 is not only the best Amazon tablet, but also one of the best slates overall for under $200, as our dedicated post suggests.
Amazon Fire HD 8
Most Fire tablets don’t follow an annual refresh cycle, and the Fire HD 8 is one of them. Its newest model came out last year and is probably the best slate if you’d prefer portability over the specs of the Fire HD 10. Being made out of plastic, the 8-inch tablet is lightweight and at the same time, you need not worry about it getting damaged after a minor fall. At its price point, you can’t expect a premium build anyway, so plastic serves both purposes.
While the tablet didn’t win any awards, its battery life was surprisingly good, considering its size. You have the option to use a Show Mode dock to enable the Alexa mode and verbally interact with the voice assistant. We found its display to be a bit on the darker side, and cameras also didn’t stand out. But at a starting price of just $80, you simply can’t go wrong with this little tablet form Amazon, especially since the company often discounts it, making the package even more enticing.
Amazon Fire 7
This is the smallest tablet in Amazon’s arsenal and also costs the lowest with a starting price of just $50. You should consider buying the Amazon Fire 7 if you don’t expect a lot from your tablet and will be fine handling the basics. If you plan to hand your kids a tiny tablet to let them play a game or read a story, this model won’t disappoint you. In fact, it is one of the best devices for this purpose.
Amazon recently refreshed the device for 2019 and it continues to be the cheapest tablet that we’d actually recommend buying. Though, you should keep in mind that the Fire 7 isn’t a powerhouse by any means, which restricts the kind of things you can use it for. The display isn’t quite high-res, but it’s alright for catching up with an episode or two before hitting the bed. And if you’re getting this machine just for your kids, then you might want to see the Kids Edition of this tablet that Amazon makes.
Read: Our Amazon Fire 7 Review
Amazon Fire Kids Edition
All three tablets that we mentioned above have their own Kids Edition models that come with a host of benefits designed specifically for your kids’ entertainment and your peace of mind. For one, these special tablets come wrapped in a factory-fitted thick case that makes it nearly impossible for your kids to break the tablet. And in case they still manage to do that, your tablet is covered with 2 years of worry-free warranty allowing you to swap your broken unit for a new one without hassle. You can pick the case color among blue, yellow, or pink, depending on what your child prefers.
Another factor that differentiates these Kids Edition tablets from the normal ones is preloaded additional for-kids content. Each unit comes with a complimentary year’s worth of FreeTime Unlimited subscription that contains a truckload of books, movies, TV shows, apps, and games that are specifically designed for kids between 3 and 12 years of age. Though their MSRPs are high, the Kids Edition Fire tablets can usually be grabbed with just $10 markup over their respective normal counterparts. This is particularly affordable considering the included covers come with a built-in kickstand that otherwise would’ve cost extra.
Installing Google Play Store on Amazon Fire Tablets
These Amazon Fire tablets will feel limited if you want to do even a little more than what the in-built software and app has to offer. They run on a forked version of Android, which means it’s rather easy to install the Google Play Store to get access to a plethora of quality apps that you won’t find on Amazon’s app store. Even for gaming, you’ll appreciate having no dearth of good games in practically all genres on the Play Store. We recently published a handy guide to help you easily install the Play Store on Amazon Fire tablets, which can be accessed from this link.
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