updated 08:49 pm EDT, Thu September 6, 2012
Amazon opts for ad-supported model for new Kindle Fire range
All of Amazon's new Kindle Fire tablets will include lockscreens with ads, the company has now revealed. Owners of the new Kindle Fire, the Kindle Fire HD 7-inch and the Kindle Fire HD 8.9-inch tablets will be the recipients of special offers and sponsored lock screens. According to Amazon, the ads will also appear on the lower left hand corner of the home screen at all times, with no apparent way to opt out of the service.
Amazon says examples of the ads will include promos for movies, music, books, digital content and deals on consumer electronics products. Other offers will include the chance to get a $5 credit to use in the Amazon MP3 Store. Previously, only Amazon's cheapest Kindle e-reader had the function built into its lockscreen.
Amazon has adopted an aggressive pricing strategy that started with the original Kindle Fire, which was reportedly sold by Amazon at a loss. Amazon's model has been to drive customers to heavily fork the device's Android OS and drive customers to purchase content from its online store to make up for the cost recovery shortfall. Its most recent financial results showed that pricing the original Kindle Fire below cost negatively impacted the company's overall profitability in the short term.
The inclusion of an ad-supported model appears to be a natural extension of that approach -- the new Kindle Fire is priced at just $159 despite a raft of hardware upgrades. While savvy users may choose to root the device to install a custom ROM as a workaround if possible, the average customer may find the devices less appealing if they are constantly forced to view ads, low entry-price notwithstanding. [via Android Central]