I am so excited to offer up a Review of the Kindle Fire by one of the most prolific users of Assistive and Educational Technology in the district. Caroline is a High School student who uses a variety of technology tools in order to access content, stay organized, and be successful. She recently received a Kindle Fire from her parents, and agreed to write up a review for the blog. I am hoping to have more student reviews of Assistive Technology, apps, and devices soon! Thanks Caroline for your time and effort!
I totally recommend the Kindle Fire. There are a few things that you are sacrificing when compared to other devices- such as other Kindles, the Nook, and the iPad. I fully defend the Kindle against the competitors.
So far the Kindle, for me, is lacking one major element which is text to speech. The original kindles had the option of having the kindle read to you. What displeases me is the fact that seemingly for no reason that they got rid of it. Talking with the people on the other end of the chat who say “we’re working on developing an app for that.” I would even pay for that app.
With that out of the way comes the fact that kindle fire does not have a camera. No, that speck in the corner is not a camera. According to Kindle forums it senses the light of the surroundings.
I have also run in to some problems recently, for example the other day when I was on the Internet the device just froze and I freaked. It would not respond to touch for a while not even a power reset. The other thing that annoys me is that I can’t download music or apps right from the device. It gives me an error message when I try to. So then I have to wait until I have WI-FI to go online to download what I wanted to download.
I am pleased with its ability to browse the web, freely play all your music that you have stored on the Amazon cloud without WI-FI. Then the music has trouble finding its way to my iPod using winamp, wmp, iTunes, and Amazon music player so I can see where it gets confused.
Anyway the last thing I like about the kindle is that after only 2 letters it starts predicting with its built in vocabulary you can add your own words to that – but I don’t unless I will use it often and I know it is spelled right. Usually when I come to that point I know that I must have misspelled the word.
The last thing you will want to know there are apps that are not supported by Kindle Fire even if they are supported by Android. For one the infamous Angry Birds is available for Kindle Fire; but the website app that my Spanish teacher recommends for a Spanish English Dictionary Word Reference is not available for Kindle Fire. Yet it advertises capability for use on other android devices. Then there is Bubbles Explode I have downloaded on both of my parents phone one has Android the other an iPhone. I still can’t get it for Kindle Fire. Go figure!
In my conversations with Caroline, the one thing she really liked was the word prediction engine in the Kindle Fire. I was able to test it out, and it’s really slick. I like that it offers word choices as opposed to trying to change what you’re typing automatically as some tablets with Auto-Correct do. The other thing that’s nice is the size. It’s lightweight, easy to manipulate, and pretty responsive overall. One of Caroline’s strengths is the ability to know what tool to use when. The right tool for the task is the key in terms of technology supports for students.