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from the L.A. Times

Amazon confirms Kindle Fire update

Kindlefire emile wamsteker bloomberg

Amazon.com has confirmed that it will roll out a software update to its bestselling but criticism-plagued Kindle Fire tablet.

A spokeswoman for the Seattle e-commerce giant said the update would be available in less than two weeks and would improve performance and touch navigation. It will also give customers the option to edit what items display on their carousels -- a landing page that shows what users have been up to on their tablets. Currently, all recent activity -- including books read, games played, television shows watched and websites visited -- are shown on a user's carousel.

"Kindle Fire is the most successful product we've ever launched –- we've already sold millions of units and we're building more to meet the strong demand," Amazon spokeswoman Kinley Pearsall said Monday. "As with all of our products, we continue to make them better for customers with regular software updates."

The Amazon Kindle Fire was released last month amid speculation that it would become an "iPad killer." But early reviews for the 7-inch tablet have been mixed, with users complaining about the small screen size, lack of external volume controls, finicky touch screen and lack of privacy. Some tech analysts have said Amazon's tablet effort was not good enough and expect the company to release a better version within months. 

Nonetheless, research firms have estimated that the Kindle Fire will become the No. 2 bestselling tablet globally behind Apple's iPad in the fourth quarter, thanks to its $199 price and Amazon's trusted brand name. 

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-- Andrea Chang

twitter.com/byandreachang

Photo: Amazon's Kindle Fire tablet. Credit: Emile Wamsteker / Bloomberg 

 
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