Today’s post is normally dedicated to Freebie Friday, but Amazon just announced something I’m sure my readers will want to know about right away: Alexa’s coming to Amazon’s Fire tablet line!
This news came as something of a footnote to Amazon’s announcement that a new Fire HD8 tablet is being released. The new tablet has more memory, a faster processor and better battery life, all of which is great, but Amazon really buried the lede on this one: you have to scroll down the new tablet’s product page to find the mini-banner announcing that Alexa is coming to Fire tablets.
Lots of people have been looking into ways to make Alexa portable and in hindsight it seems like adding Alexa functionality to its own tablet line is natural thing for Amazon to do, but this announcement has taken me totally by surprise.
Amazon says a free over-the-air update will add Alexa functionality to its Fire tablets in the coming months, and while they’re not specifying which generation(s) of Fire tablet will get the update I think it’s safest to assume only the most recent (2015/16) models will get it.
Now that it’s happening and I’ve had time to let the notion sink in, I’m pretty excited about this. I really miss Alexa when I’m away from home but the current portable solution, the Amazon Tap, doesn’t have a headphone jack so it’s not a great option for me when I’m at work or out in a public location like a coffee shop. I already carry my 2015 model year Fire HD8 tablet around with me and of course it does have a headphone jack, so now all I have to do is wait for Alexa’s arrival!
Important Note: Alexa only works when you have a WiFi connection, so after she sets up shop in your Fire tablet you’ll have to remember that when you’re offline she’s going to take a powder.
Being able to take Alexa anywhere you can currently take a tablet is very exciting news!
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If you’ve been on the fence about buying a Fire tablet or upgrading to a newer model, this announcement gives you a pretty great excuse to pick up the All-New Fire HD 8 Tablet. You can pre-order now and expect delivery 9/21/16. The tablet is priced at $89.99 (an interest-free, 5-installment payment plan is available) in the 16GB model with special offers, but is also available without special offers and in a 32GB model at slightly higher price points. Four color options: black, blue, magenta (more like a purple) and tangerine.