updated 12:15 am EDT, Wed March 28, 2012
Amazon may have up to 4 tablets in 2012
Amazon's rumored Kindle Fire lineup expansion might get larger still based on an unusually specific rumor late Wednesday. There would be "at least two" new Kindle Fire models in 2012, Digitimes insisted, with as many as four depending on Amazon's ambitions. A 10.1-inch model was supposedly on track for July shipments and would aim at the $249 to $299 price range, with HannsTouch supposedly joining TPK and Wintek in making touch panels.
Corroborating an earlier claim, there would be two seven-inch models, according to the tipsters. One higher-end version would slot into the existing Kindle Fire's $199 space and may be the 1280x800 version mentioned earlier. The highlight in this tip would be the lower-end version. At $169, it would be even less expensive; the model might be the 1024x600 edition and possibly the older model continued over.
Despite the earlier rumor identifying two seven-inch models joining an 8.9-inch edition, this larger slate supposedly hadn't been confirmed with suppliers over pricing issues.
Amazon has been having strong success with the Kindle Fire, at least as of its fall results, and is widely suspected of wanting to compete more directly in tablets than it has so far. The latest claims are far from confirmed, but would have Amazon trying to cover both widening competition with Barnes & Noble and, with 8.9- or 10.1-inch models, possibly lure would-be iPad buyers through similar dimensions but lower pricing.