2013 Kindle Fire TabletsThe new Kindle Fire tablets were announced last month and the first models have started shipping this week. Based on posts in Amazon's Kindle Forums and reviews on product pages, there seems to be some confusion and questions about some of the new features.
The product pages for the new models all contain a detailed comparison chart showing which devices have which features, and it's best to read over that chart carefully before placing your order. However, I thought it would be helpful to briefly summarize some of the key points here.
First, there are three new models: Fire HD, Fire HDX, and Fire HDX 8.9". There is also one previous year's model that continues to be sold; the Fire HD 8.9".
The Fire HD is this year's entry-level tablet. It does not have a camera, microphone, or the new Mayday support feature. It's available with 8 or 16 GB of storage space, and is a wifi-only device.
The Fire HDX is a premium 7" tablet with a front-facing camera, microphone, and Mayday support. It is available with 16, 32, or 64 GB of storage. You can purchase a wifi-only version, or optional 4G versions (AT&T or Verizon).
The Fire HDX 8.9" is a larger-format tablet with both front- and rear-facing cameras, a microphone, and Mayday support. It has the same storage and wireless connection options as the 7" Fire HDX.
Note that none of this year's Fires have a micro-HDMI port, for a direct connection to a TV. Instead, they will feature wireless connectivity to supported TVs and devices.