Cracking Open the Amazon Kindle Fire
The Kindle Fire is Amazon's entrant into the rapidly growing tablet market. Having launched the original Kindle e-book reader in 2007, the company is no stranger to mobile devices. But, the Fire is Amazon's first true tablet.
We've cracked open nearly every Kindle that Amazon's put out, and couldn't wait to get our hands on the Fire. Follow along as I cracked open the Amazon Kindle Fire.
For an my analysis of the hardware inside the Kindle Fire, check out my blog post, "Kindle Fire teardown: No-frills tablet filled with TI hardware."
Photo by: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
Caption by: Bill Detwiler
Bill Detwiler has nothing to disclose. He doesn't hold investments in the technology companies he covers.
Bill Detwiler is Managing Editor Tech Pro Research and the host of Cracking Open, CNET and TechRepublic's popular online show. He was most recently Managing Editor for TechRepublic Pro. Prior to joining TechRepublic in 2000, Bill was an IT manager, database administrator, and desktop support specialist in the social research and energy industries. He has bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Louisville, where he has also lectured on computer crime and crime prevention.
Last year I bought Kindle Fires for my wife and myself. A short time ago, My wife Kindle developed a problem. The micro USB port started acting intermittently. Charging was becoming more and more difficult as time went on. So was data connectivity. Finally, a couple days ago, the Kindle wouldn't even charge at all. I had ordered new connectors on the outside chance that hers was worn out - A common problem with Kindle Fires... Especially the early ones. Luckily TR has this tear-down. I followed the instructions and got inside. Upon removing the motherboard, the connector just stayed inside the case. A clear indication of either broken solder connections or lifted traces on the motherboard (ulp). To my relief, it was simply broken solder connections. A little flux and a tiny bit of solder on the tip of my iron and the connector was resoldered securely to the motherboard. Why they didn't solder the mounting tabs, I'll never know... But I did add a dab of solder to them (and subsequently soldered the connector more securely to the motherboard). I probably would have had a much harder time without the assistance of the tear-down article. THANK YOU TECH REPUBLIC!!!!!!! The Kindle is now as good as new!
I don't understand why they left the G3 out of the Fire, since they've already been using the Whispersync successfully since the Kindle 1. That's the only thing I miss - now I have to find a hotspot to use the wi-fi.
In the article, the section "Internal hardware Our Kindle Fire test unit had the following hardware components:" I REALLY wish all manufacturers put those details in their product descriptions for everything. THAT's the info I want to know when deciding what to buy. BTW, the hardware specs look pretty good to me. I say it's more than worth the asking price... then I'll just wait for a custom ROM to flash it with to get the full Android experience.
I'm more concerned about how it works and how it compares to the competition. The likelihood that I'll ever need to disassemble one is slim.
I have had mine for three days and can not find anything wrong with it. My wife has a iPad II that I have had to deal with. To sum it up: a poor man's iPad and worth more than every penny saved.
So is this Kindle Fire gonna set the tablet market on fire? Or burn up on impact? I am looking for a web browser/book reader/maybe document editor, is this the ticket for me?
Great article and worth keeping when one might have to replace the battery. Does it work after being put back together?
Anyone can take it apart... is there any analysis to go along with this? Otherwise, I don't see the point in your article.
For my analysis of the hardware inside the Kindle Fire, check out my blog post, "Kindle Fire teardown: No-frills tablet filled with TI hardware." http://www.techrepublic.com/blog/itdojo/kindle-fire-teardown-no-frills-tablet-filled-with-ti-hardware/3056
people with a brain and an interest in tech might. i love taking things apart and putting them back together just to see how they work and what the parts are.. that's what moves techs and such, to do what they do. i've been looking for the specs on the processor and they have provided the information. it's solidified my buying the device and it appears that it might be easy enough to customize the back plate with a replacement one (perhaps with cool graphics or something). if you don't like the articles like these, don't read them.
I was six yrs old when I took my dads Baby Ben alarm clock apart. Got my hide tanned a bit. I have been taking things apart to see how they worked ever since. That is how I learned about computers etc. Be 72 next month and and if Santa brings me a Kindle I might tear it apart too.