Dec 02 AT 3:28 PM Taylor Wimberly 90 Comments

Amazon Kindle Fire now the best selling Android tablet, tops iPad sales at


Amazon told us the Kindle Fire was their best selling product on Black Friday and now some early Q4 numbers have arrived. A new report from iSuppli estimates that Amazon will ship 3.9 million units before the end of the year and Digitimes says that number could climb to as high as 5 million.

When we examine the global rankings for tablet sales in Q4, Amazon now ranks 2nd behind Apple and controls 13.8% market share. This is quite the achievement since Amazon was sitting at zero just a couple months ago. Samsung, who had an entire year head start with Android tablets, comes in at 3rd position with 1.4 million units and 4.8% market share.

As we pointed out before, Amazon’s success is largely due to price and their content ecosystem. Amazon is selling the Kindle Fire for $199¬†which makes it one of the cheaper tablets around and they have one of the largest content stores with¬†18 million movies, TV shows, songs, books, and magazines.

Another big winner here is Texas Instruments who produces the dual-core OMAP4 processor inside the Kindle Fire and Barnes & Noble Nook Tablet. This news instantly makes them the 2nd largest supplier of mobile processors for tablets, moving them in front of NVIDIA. However, rumors suggest that NVIDIA might power the upcoming 8.9 inch Kindle Fire tablet, so it will be interesting to see how that plays out.

Amazon still has a long ways to catch up to the Apple iPad, but I still think they can pull it off with the right strategy. As TechCrunch points out, the Kindle Fire is already outselling the iPad on We expect Amazon to keep releasing Kindle tablets in different sizes and more regions, which will only increase their sales.

Have you had a chance to play with a Kindle Fire yet? If so, how do you think the experience matches up with the other tablet offerings out there? I know I’m happy with my purchase so far.

Via: TechCrunch

Source: iSuppli

Taylor is the founder of Android and Me. He resides in Dallas and carries the Samsung Galaxy S 4 and HTC One as his daily devices. Ask him a question on Twitter or Google+ and he is likely to respond. | Ethics statement

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  • stenzor

    This is very good news.. not only for Amazon, but also for Android exposure

    • stenzor

      Android (even though it’s a highly customized version) has finally reached the masses, and not just the tech-savvy crowd.. these are exciting times people!

      • erikiksaz

        Let’s hope that all the other tablet manufacturers don’t leap at the chance of building somewhat of a budget tablet. That would create the HUGE perception that android tablets are “budget” tablets and incapable of providing a great tablet experience.

        • stenzor

          Well, we all know that Apple won’t make anything cheap.. who else is there to worry about? ;P

          • erikiksaz

            Primarily samsung and HTC. Just like the review mentioned, they’ve been trying to compete on the ~10inch, uber-equipped front and still came short after a year’s head start.

            Either way, I hope the high-end tablet manufacturers stay their course.

          • stenzor

            Oh I see what you’re saying… undervaluing the Android brand… yes that would not be good at all

          • seven2k

            no one really…just other manufacturers going against each other. Looks like it is the windows vs apple OS war again. apple will not drop their process because it will damage the image they have of being high end

        • DroidSamurai

          Look, they would be unbelievable stupid to believe that producing a budget tablet is all it takes. Amazon did not just produce a cheap tablet. It made a cheap tablet that has acceptable quality, and back it up with one of the best content delivery ecosystem. It’s not some half-baked media web stores ANY Android maker can produce, nor do they have the will to do that (trust me, they want to, but looking at similar effort in the past from HTC, or Samsung, you can’t expect much from them.)

          Let’s admit it, the Google Market integration just isn’t as seamless as the Kindle one, mainly because an Android tablet is defined as something more than an entertainment device. But the Kindle is nothing but an entertainment device, period. There’s just no way to compare with such simplicity. IMO, the Kindle tablet is even simpler to use than the iPad.

          • minimage

            As far as it being about more than a budget tablet, you’ve got that right. I bought a tablet at half the price of the Kindle, and while it does something things, it is very lacking in quality. I have hope, yet, that I will be able to hack it into more usefulness, but I was already looking in other directions (including at the Fire) after owning it for only two days.

        • Ismael Rodriguez

          Too late. I forget what company it is, but someone just announced a $100 ICS Tablet. I think it’s overseas, but if it does well, it might see some light in the U.S. The specs aren’t all that great, obviously. On par with the original Galaxy Tab, I believe.

      • vitebsk66

        My apologies for a newbie question, but what kind of customizations has Amazon made to the OS for the Fire, and how does that affect the ability to, for example, install apps from the Marketplace?

        • kentrburton

          you can install apps form the marketplace just like an android phone or tablet. Its just that the home screen looks like a book shelf.. That the big difference. The fire is made to drive you to stuff. Music books movies….

  • Nathan

    Dam being cheap makes all the difference.

    • oddball

      It’s not just about cheap though. It’s a cheap device with good support in a huge ecosystem. It has a lot available even for the nonpower user. Without root or any outside work you can use it as a fairly decent device and the Amazon services that come bundled make it a great choice. With slight modification it becomes an inexpensive device with decent specs to be played with the way a lot of us love to.

      • mimogear

        Couldn’t have said it any better. After spending some time with the fire at Target no wonder it’s a hit! It feels really light and it has a very sturdy feel. Plus the interface is a breeze to browse through. This easily goes head to head with the Nook.

      • frpst9

        Yeah, I feel like the fact that its backed by Amazon makes a huge difference in the eyes of the consumer. They also view it as the next version of an already successful brand (Kindle). Plus the price doesn’t hurt.

        These factors make it less intimidating to a non-techie.

    • Chrislewissd

      Could you imagine if the xoom ( or any other tablet) was realsed at the price it cost to make. They too would have seen number like this.

      • orangestrat

        If the xoom had come out and not been more expensive than the ipad, it would’ve done alright

    • NasLAU

      It’s not that it’s cheap. There’s plenty of cheaper (and crappier) tablets out there. It’s because it’s a great value. Inexpensive but good.

      • Mykhaylo Tkachuk

        I wouldn’t agree with that – there is no way you can find tablet with dual-core processor, gorilla glass and IPS screen for 200$.

        Of course there is Chinese crap, but they’re so damn slooooooow.

  • JIW

    I have to say, this is a really impressive unit. I would LOVE a full featured tablet, but this thing does 90% of what I would want it to do at 50% the cost. Once it gets ICS… it will probably do 99% of what I want it to do. Not to mention, it looks nice and feels very natural to hold.

    • JIW

      Also… congrats to Amazon!!!

    • Brian Singer-Towns

      I agree with JIW. The Fire is very impressive for $199. As long as I can get it to sync with my corporate e-mail and calendar it will do most everything I need to do except Skyping–and my new Nexus Prime should take care of that!

  • bwmanx

    I think this will be good for the Android App situation. I do end up buying most of my apps off the Amazon App store (or getting the free apps).

  • ags29

    I fkin love mine. I think people want more than they need in a tablet, but this one fulfills everything I needed it for (after rooting it and installing the Android market on it of course).

    PDF’s, word files and powerpoints look great and the screen is big enough that I don’t have to keep constantly zooming in and out. The default browser sucked, but Dolphin Browser HD quickly fixed that. It runs all of these tasks smoothly and that’s all I need it to do. I don’t get why people want things like a camera on a tablet. It’s awkward to see people trying to take photos with one. Use your phone for that!

    Have you rooted yours Taylor?

    • golcarcol

      Quick question, have you used any PDFs that have coding examples?

      Whenever I want to read a programming book, I hate that I have to do it on my laptop as I can’t look at it too well on my Kindle.

  • AndroidJunkie

    No surprise here. Google wouldn’t consider this a success for android tablets.

    And all other android tablet manufacturers are now officially concerned. By the end of the year the Kindle Fire alone could hold 60-80% of the android tablet market. And they haven’t even touched the 8.9 or 10 inch designs yet.

  • BigCiX

    I like everything about this tablet except the bookshelf. Bought it yesterday for my daughters Christmas gift and put Go Launcher on it!

  • charliethesuperturtle

    I guess the toothpaste doesn’t count

  • ajonrichards

    Android tablets will reach their own when Google releases an official one of their own. Google’s done a good job with their flagship phones, and a Google tablet will say “This is exactly how our tablets should work”

  • ren1018

    I played with the Kindle Fire last week and the device is awesome.

  • frankthgr8

    I’d get one except that it doesn’t have a sd card slot…

  • GUI_Center

    Its a great tablet for the everyday user. Good way to expand androids presence.

  • staryoshi

    I expected the Fire to do well and I’m glad to see that it has. It is not a product I’m interested in, but it is filling a void in the tablet space very nicely :)

  • intel8140

    Without the cameras, I think it really hurts the tablet. I think a camera is a must. I use Evernotes and I use the camera all the time.

    • bernard

      you would only need a camera on a table if u do have a phone without a camera which really sounds embarrassing.

  • eioous

    Nice, Now hopefully well see some kick ace ROM’s for it

    • Aspeds2989

      We should have something within the next week :)

  • Luke Haviland

    first the Nook kicked arse
    now the fire.
    Why cant Samsung do this?

  • generalagony

    Way to go Amazon and android.

  • neskasi

    I’m very interested in getting one but I’ll wait to see if there’s a bigger version coming out.

  • rishabhbhatia36

    Take that Apple!

  • Flight777

    The only thing I cannot grasp is why people want a much more limited and company controlled device (Ipad, Kindle Fire, Nook) over a open Android powerhouse like the Prime or Tab10.1?

    • NasLAU

      Many don’t. They just can’t afford it.

      • vitebsk66

        Sadly, I’m one of those consumers who fits into that category. Hence, my interest in the Fire. I’ve read that someone’s already figured out how to root it, and that that would allow you to do pretty much anything with the Fire that you can with a “regular” Android tablet. If that’s true, this could be a “way in” for those of us not ready/able to part with $400-500 for a tablet.

        • Ismael Rodriguez

          For what it is, I guess it’s worth it’s price at least, but no Bluetooth? Nope…no thanks. If I can buy a cheap Bluetooth headset for $15, there’s no reason even a budget tablet can’t have it. (If I’ve read that wrong…feel free to correct me. But any device without Bluetooth these days is an instant loss in my personal opinion.)

  • deivs001

    Maybe Kindle Fire is so good, but they do not deliver it to Latvia. Boohooo

  • mugurelu

    Apple will fall, hear my word!

  • honourbound68

    i’d love to have this but… if only it had either a micro sd port OR more capacity. 8 gb is just too low.

    • zodiac38

      yep, waaaaay too low! :(

  • ben steel

    Can’t beat that price

  • Kevin Amundson

    I prefer the E-Ink screen for e-book reading, and since I’m an android addict I have a B&N Nook Simple Touch rooted. If I was going to get a tablet it’s primary use would be productivity. I would prefer a 10″ screen for productivity, hence my desire for an ASUS Transformer Prime or Galaxy Tab 10.1. I do see the allure for a smaller tablet though and since the price is so cheep I could find myself picking one up eventually.

  • myandroid99

    too bad i returned mine

  • wontsttle4less


  • wontsttle4less

    i wonder how this will change if any after the holiday season

  • wild

    I think nook tablet is more interesting , even it’s price 50$ higher.

  • honourbound68

    I’m still on the fence between this and Nook Tab. If only the fire had either 16gb capacity OR micro sd then I’d get it hands down

  • Sketchy alx

    I played with one at the store and didn’t like the interface on it. I mean, it’s great for some people, in it’s simplicity, but I like a “real” Android interface. The HTC Flyer was great, (I had it for a few weeks) but with HTC still running Gingerbread, no updates for HC anytime soon, and there’s hardly any developer support for it, I ended up taking it back. It’s a shame, the build quality on it was awesome.

  • Brandy4777

    I thought about this option for my son but honestly the camera is what made the decision. He wants to have videochats with his dad while he’s deployed and that’s not an option with this one. It doesn’t mean I won’t get one for me though. :)

  • aranea

    I just wish Fire had a good TV out or Amazon released a prime app for other Android tablets and my PS3.

  • humidity

    I’m glad to see well made Android tablets for a fraction of the cost of an iPad. It’s the perfect holiday gift for children who want a tablet instead of a new console or portable game system. +1 to Amazon!

  • carlosestremera

    still debating among the kindle fire, nook color or nook tablet…

  • mrmrchris

    Can we have it in the UK, pretty please?

  • jathak

    This is fantastic news for Android in general, but particularly for Amazon.

  • BillyMaysHere

    for $200… not bad

  • mingchan06

    Yeah its great, but i heard that the amazon silk is super slow. Also that the kindle freezes at times and can have a choppy screen because of problems.

  • Numbertwo

    I tried my friends Kindle out yesterday, not a bad tablet for the low price, not surprised its doing so well. Plus all the kindle fire commercials on tv are good exposure for android.

  • paicebailey

    I would love to have this device, I have an original kobo which is great for reading but it would be sweet to have a bit more options for sure. That was last Christmas, come on Santa I’ve been good!

  • mikeytusa

    I bought one for myself and 2 for family members for the holidays. All 3 costs the same as my iPad. I personally don’t really like the Amazon ecosystem and plan on rooting/ROMing it. For $200, this thing is a perfect little dev device. Amazon is going to do really well with the Kindle Fire.

  • Darknight42020

    Liked using a family members so much hoping for one for myself for birthday/christmas since they both are so close to eachother…

  • YNWA

    Ok, now someone needs to come out with a nice 7 or 8 inch tablet that is under $300 with ICS, and thing will be interesting.

  • cdmartin21

    Trying to get my father to get me this for christmas!

  • sylar

    Maybe this will put apple in a bit of a vice and make them innovate. I don’t really want to see them go out of business but if they are going to copyright every darn thing out there then they should at least have to work for success.

  • cabrone

    I’m going to order one for myself but order it as a gift. Anyone hear about amazon loading it up with your account info? People have had their fire stolen and the thief can buy anything they want! Scary! Just a heads up, folks! Order yourself one as a gift

  • ilysespieces

    I really haven’t heard many positive things about it from friends first hand, but I’m really interested in giving it a try.

  • Jeannine scavo

    I want this to give to my kids so I can get my ipad back lol. Love that it is cheaper but doesn’t sway me away from apple yet

  • wild

    I hope andoid will win tablet war in 2012 :)

  • Daniel Grice

    hopefully the world will realise that apple only sells shit that never even got somewhere near as android did

  • dacatalyst41

    I wish the Transformer Prime would’ve come out at $399. That would’ve made things interesting.

  • jst4tim

    This shows the price point most average consumers are ready to spend on a tablet lets hope others follow Amazon with more affordable tablets.

  • Jarrett

    Android will surely surpass Ipad soon! The Kindle Fire has a very reasonable price for a tablet/ reader and that is what the buyer wants… something affordable and has all the options.

  • Khronykking

    It’s all price just look at the VZW xoom special selling out supply in a couple days. Grabbed one for 149.99 on contract because couldn’t beat it. Bought that day and on back order for two weeks almost. I wonder how many have been sold there.

  • Torrance Barber

    It really looks like a good tablet. When I tried i out, it runs pretty smooth. However, I would still prefer more options to customize it. It’s all about choice.

  • oko loko

    I definitely need 10-inch tablet with ICS but nevertheless I am very happy that Kindle Fire will finally make real competition to iPads!

  • note

    It would’ve been very good if it had a mobile broadband module, not only Wi-Fi, for that price of course :)

  • antfelici

    Sure it tops it now but will it have the same long term success?

  • Jeremiah Akin

    I got a chance to play around with one of these yesterday. It looks nice – good feel when you hold it. Much nicer than the nook color. I still think I’m going to wait for the second generation though.

  • Santana

    Android rocks

  • Samar

    The rumored Amazon phone will surely compete with iPhone/Android phones considering this.

  • hjk

    Only one problem with the Fire… It isn’t available and doesn’t work overseas, nor does their cloud service. If the only place you can use a device like the Fire is in the US you can’t really take over the tablet market. If you are planning on visiting overseas or possibly end up stationed overseas the only books and movies you will be able to watch/read outside the US is what you have downloaded to the Fire (this includes games as well).

    I currently live overseas and would love to keep my Fire but unfortunately that is just not an option. I know this is because of licensing etc, and not a direct reflection on Amazon or the device itself but until it is more usable everywhere I will have to stick with the iPad.

    Hopefully those who buy this now and then travel outside of the US on vacation download what they need before the leave or it will fill like a 200 dollar mistake until they return home to the US.