After Google announced its new Nexus 7 tablet back in June, Amazon’s Kindle Fire no longer looks like the bargain slate it used to be. After all, the Nexus 7 offers a whole lot more for that $199 price tag. But it may not be long before Amazon is ready to fight again, with rumors of a Kindle Fire 2 coming as soon as next month.
According to China Times, which cites Amazon’s manufacturing parters in Southeast Asia, the first batch of second-generation Kindle Fire 2 slates will begin shipping on August 7 — just over one month away. The report says very little about the tablet’s specifications, but it does say Amazon will maintain its 7-inch display, and its popular $199 price tag.
Internally, the Kindle Fire 2 is going to need to be improved significantly if it wants any chance of competing with the Nexus 7. Google’s new tablet — which starts at $199, just like the Kindle Fire — packs a quad-core processor; a 7-inch, 1280 x 800 HD display; and 1GB of RAM. It also runs an untouched version of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, which many users are likely to prefer over Amazon’s Kindle Fire user interface.
It will certainly be exciting to see how Amazon tackles that. It will have to at least match the Nexus 7’s specifications, of course, plus provide a unique selling point that will convince consumers the Kindle Fire 2 is a better option.