- The 1.5GB RAM makes a significant difference compared to the 1GB version released in late 2015. The performance is snappy and doesn’t freeze or slowdown when multitasking, e.g., downloading an e-book, updating an application and streaming video content.
- Despite the same 1280 X 800 resolution, the display quality is slightly downgraded compared to the previous generation. This generation of the Fire HD 8 doesn’t match the colour vibrancy and contrast levels of the previous generation. However, the display is good for its price, compared to similar tablets released by other vendors, and well worth the compromise for an increase in RAM and battery life (both drawbacks with the previous generation of the Fire HD 8).
- Fire OS 5 is based on Android 5 Lollipop. This is a good thing, as applications not found in the Amazon app store may be externally sideloaded as an APK. The Amazon app store itself contains most popular applications and is far ahead of the Microsoft Store. This being said, you do miss the Google services and other applications tied into the Google Play store. Amazon released a tablet tightly integrated into its ecosystem and Prime services.
- Amazon excels at syncing between devices in its ecosystem. The affordable Fire TV Stick, Echo Dot and Kindle all work seamlessly with the Fire HD 8.
- Compared to other Android tablets – in this price category – the Fire HD 8 generally offers more for less, with extra RAM and good battery life making the difference. However, Lenovo’s Tab range of tablets, offering a near-stock Android experience, are comparable and sometimes better. The Lenovo Tab 4 8 has just been released and is priced similar to the Fire HD 8 but with 2GB RAM. The Tab 3 8, which I will review soon, is well worth considering, as when it is discounted it is priced slightly lower than Fire HD 8. The Tab 3 8 has both a better display, despite the same resolution, and 2 GB RAM. However, the Fire HD 8, compared to Lenovo’s Tab range, has superior battery life.
Wednesday, 8 March 2017
Review of the Fire HD 8: The best Fire tablet
I’ve been using the Fire HD 8 (late 2016 release) for a few months and, overall, it is the best tablet in the Amazon Fire range. I would also recommend the tablet as a budget choice. Below are some reasons for making this a very good tablet in its category: