If you are a primary subscriber who wants a cheap way to access this product, it’s a good choice. However, if you care a bit about the display or performance, pay a little more and buy the Fire HD 8.
- Very very cheap
- Great integration of the first
- Sustainable body
- Bad screen
- Limited RAM becomes obvious quickly
- Difficult to get away from Amazon content
- Price: $49.99
- 7 inch screen
- Quad-core chipset
- 16GB of storage
- microSD up to 512 GB
What is Amazon Fire 7?
The latest Fire 7 tablet from Amazon, Fire 7, is, again, a slate designed almost solely for Amazon content consumption. Books, TV Shows or Audiobooks: The Fire 7 gives you direct access to everything Prime has to offer.
Still, how much can a £ 50 / $ 50 tablet really be? And how much sacrifice must be made so that a device like this costs six times less than the cheapest iPad?
In fact, a lot. But that does not mean that there is no reason for this device to exist.
Design: Amazon Fire 7 is a rugged plastic tablet that can withstand blows
Amazon Fire 7 is about as far from the iPad Pro and Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 as it is possible to obtain. Considering that this tablet costs one cent under $ 50 in the US, this should not come as a surprise, but you might be shocked by the budget this slate feels the first time you get it.
It is constructed entirely of plastic, with a little soft buttons and a back box that seems to have to eject completely. It’s fundamental, but it’s not necessarily a bad thing. You will not fear that this tablet is scratched in your bag or that you give it to your children.
Because of its plastic construction, it is also very light and can be held comfortably in one hand for reading.
As its name indicates, Amazon Fire 7 has a 7-inch screen. This makes it Amazon’s smallest tablet and one of the craziest we’ve looked at. With its slim 16: 9 screen, it’s much narrower than the 7.9-inch ipad mini and it was small enough to slip into the pocket of one of my biggest coats.
All the ports and physical controls are on the top – which is a bit strange until you get used to it – and include a 3.5mm headphone jack, a micro USB port for charging, a flip-flop volume and a lock switch. Since USB-C has become so common now, it annoys me from Amazon who sticks to the tired old style. However, if you have multiple micro USB cables, you probably will not find it as painful.
Screen: In case of obvious weakness with Amazon Fire 7, the display is rather poor
We will always make sacrifices to sell a tablet at £ 50 / $ 50, and it is obvious that the angles have been cut: the screen. The 7-inch IPS panel (In Plane Switching) is colorful and bright, but the low resolution of 1024 x 600 is very obvious and makes it all a task to watch movies on the Web. Pixels are always visible and the text is very erratic – not ideal for a device marketed as an electronic reader.
It depends on the value you place on a crisp, clean image. If, like me, you prefer that pixels merge into each other, I would advise you to spend a little more and opt for one of the Fire HD tablets.
Software and Alexa: If you’re a fan of Amazon Prime, the Fire 7 will collect all your media and books.
The software that runs on Amazon’s Fire line is the definition of loving or disliking it. Each aspect is designed to direct you to content provided by Amazon, whether a product Video premium or a piece of clothing that you looked at two weeks ago.
If you’re not a main member, I do not think this tablet suits you, even at such a low price. Other applications, such as Netflix, are available, but the home screens are designed to bring Amazon’s content to the fore. Sometimes you may feel like you are in a constant announcement.
There are also ads (or special offers, as Amazon likes to call them) on the lock screen. These are mainly book suggestions that are acceptable and can be disabled by paying an extra £ 10 / $ 15.
If you are deeply rooted in the ecosystem of Amazon, the overall user interface of the software allows you to deliver content quickly. Prime Video, Kindle Books, Audible audiobooks, and apps from Amazon’s well-stocked Appstore are all readily available, along with other convenient features, such as X-ray playback in video playback and the ability to switch between a Kindle book and an audiobook.
I am a fan of the For You home screen panel in particular. This is an area in which you will get quick access to your recently read books and watched movies, all combined in a convenient and scrollable list.
As with previous Amazon tablets, the Fire 7 runs a forked version of the Google Android. Android remains the base of the operating system, but there is no visible mention of it and no support for popular services such as YouTube, Gmail or Google Play Store. Instead, Amazon has its own application store and its native applications for email and web browsing, which are far from Google’s level. If you are a big user of search engine giant services, it would be better to use an appropriate version of Android tablet.
One of the features of the Fire 7 compared to other Android tablets is the in-depth integration of Alexa’s voice wizard from Amazon. Alexa was already available in previous versions of Fire 7, which means you do not need to press a button to bring Alexa to life. Instead, just say “Alexa” as you would with a Echo or Echo point.
You can use Alexa to control your smart home (“Alexa, turn off the bedroom lights”), play music and just about anything you can do on Echo Show.
Performance: Fire 7 performance is acceptable, even if cameras are forgotten
Amazon Fire 7 is not the tablet for intense gaming sessions or image editing, and nothing has been clearer than the fairly low-end internals. There is only 1 GB of RAM, associated with a 1.3 GHz processor. This amount of RAM is particularly low and you will notice it when you switch from one application to another.
There is some lag when opening applications that you do not get with more expensive tablets. However, and I come back to the price again, I can forgive it’s only £ 50.
You’ll also notice a lag when you play, but the basics such as navigation and email are much smoother.
There are two cameras on the Fire 7: one at the front, whose video is in 720p, and one at the back, which is 2 megapixels. Neither are very good and, to be quite honest, I would be quite to give up the cameras completely (or at least the one from the back) if that allowed Amazon to add a little more RAM . The camera is slow to focus and shooting, it struggles when the light is not bright and will usually be defeated by any phone you have in your pocket.
Battery Life: A Decent Artist
Amazon states that you should expect seven hours of reading, browsing and media monitoring. After each week of using the device, I feel that these affirmations are correct and that I tend to charge the tablet every two or three days. If you only use it for, say, half an hour reading each day, you will probably have a week between two charges.
The full charge of the tablet takes about two hours with the power supply provided. However, it will take a lot longer if you plug it into a laptop to charge it (this is something you may know if you own a Kindle). Amazon also stayed with the micro USB port, rather than switching to the new USB-C alternative.
Should I buy Amazon Fire 7?
Fire 7 remains a budget tablet this, although far from perfect, is hard to criticize for the price of £ 50 / $ 50. If you want a cheap slate to watch movies on long flights or give children without fear of being damaged, it is a wise choice.
Of course, there are gaps and sacrifices: the display is mediocre, the cameras are awful and the meager 1 GB RAM is known a little too often. But if you consider that the cheapest iPad costs more than six times the price of the Fire 7, these negatives are a little easier to swallow.
If you are a primary subscriber who wants a cheap way to access this product, it’s a good choice. If you even care slightly about the display or performance, pay a little more and get the Fire HD 8.
Amazon Fire 7 (2019) Review
Fire 7 remains an economical tablet but difficult to criticize for its price of £ 50 / $ 50, although it is not perfect. If you want a cheap slate to watch movies on long flights or give children without fear of being damaged, this is a wise choice.
The price written on this page is true as the time it is written. It may change at any moment.