Amazon is again with one more new model of its Fireplace HD 10 pill. Now in its 11th-generation, the 2021 mannequin brings a couple of small enhancements and is even pitched as a productiveness gadget.
You heard that proper: Amazon now sells a Fireplace HD 10 Productiveness, which bundles the pill with a Bluetooth keyboard case and a yr’s subscription to Microsoft 365 so that you get Phrase, Excel and different apps.
It does a surprisingly good job of being slightly laptop computer should you don’t must transcend moderately primary duties.
And if that’s not of curiosity, the Fireplace HD 10 is a good leisure pill beginning at simply £149/$149. Confusingly, there are various totally different variations of the pill together with a brand new Plus mannequin which is basically the identical but in addition has wi-fi charging and an additional 1GB of RAM. It’s additionally obtainable as a Productiveness bundle, and that is the model Amazon despatched for this assessment.
Design & Construct
A brand new pill hardly ever seems to be dramatically totally different however it’s clear Amazon has made some refinements right here in comparison with the earlier model of the Fireplace HD 10 which launched in 2019.
For starters, it’s an inexpensive quantity lighter at 465g versus 504g making it extra comfy to make use of. I just like the soft-feel matt end and the Fireplace HD 10 is out there in Black, Denim, Lavender and Olive.
Observe that the Plus mannequin I used to be despatched solely is available in a gray referred to as Slate.
It’s fairly harking back to the Tesco Hudl 2 from 2014, exhibiting how a lot price range pill design has come on over time.
Amazon is pitching it at extra panorama use with some small tweaks you won’t instantly discover, akin to shifting the webcam to the longer facet, simply as you’d discover on most laptops. It additionally seems to be extra trendy with barely extra rounded corners and thinner bezels.
A part of the rationale for the change to panorama is that Amazon sells the Fireplace HD 10 with an non-obligatory Bluetooth keyboard – made by Fintie – which turns it into one thing resembling a mini laptop computer. It gives a reasonably good typing expertise and has shortcut keys, though not all those I might like.
Usefully, the pill could be indifferent from it due to magnets, however when hooked up does not angle backwards very far. In addition to the keyboard, the Productiveness bundle additionally comes with a 12-month Microsoft 365 Private subscription.
Specs & Options
Because the identify suggests, there’s a 10.1in display screen with a Full HD decision 1920×1080 pixels. It’s not a lot totally different from the display screen on the 2019 Fireplace HD 10 and is a good show contemplating the low value. The IPS panel supplies good viewing angles, punchy colors and there’s loads of brightness – 10% brighter than earlier era, in line with Amazon.
Inside is identical octa-core processor however Amazon has elevated the RAM by 50% to 3GB (4GB for the Plus mannequin) giving it a greater means to deal with multi-tasking. One other signal, together with the Productiveness bundles, is that this version is pitched as greater than only a pill to look at movies and use social media. An inexpensive different to a Microsoft Floor Go and even an iPad, maybe.
Typically use, each the Fireplace HD 10 and Plus fashions are nippy and may swap between apps with out a lot hesitation. Do keep in mind this can be a price range pill, so don’t set your hopes too excessive: efficiency isn’t iPad-smooth.
We use Microsoft 365 for work and I used to be in a position to log into my account identical to I might on a laptop computer and immediately entry all my recordsdata. We’ve got an epically giant spreadsheet used for planning and the Fireplace HD 10 handles it surprisingly properly.
What isn’t so good, if you’re going to use the pill for a corporation account, is that you could be be requested to encrypt the storage so as to use Outlook. A pop-up message warns this will likely end in ‘considerably slower gadget efficiency’. Nonetheless, this isn’t aimed toward company use, and is designed for Microsoft 365 Private.
The rear digicam has been bumped from 2- to 5Mp however stays mediocre by way of high quality, performing badly in low gentle. The entrance digicam is arguably extra helpful and remains to be 2Mp. It’s ok for video calls with higher element than some laptops we’ve examined not too long ago.
Connectivity includes USB-C for charging and a headphone jack. Internally, there’s no improve to Wi-Fi 6 however that’s acceptable at this value however you do get an improve Bluetooth 5.Zero LE.
Stereo audio system sit on prime when you’ve got the pill in panorama mode and sound moderately good, though nothing particular. You get the same old lack of bass and there’s distortion at greater volumes. They assist Dolby Atmos however this appears to be a tick-box train solely and doesn’t actually do a lot by way of a spacious sound subject.
Battery life remains to be quoted at 12 hours and I feel you will get that with assorted utilization. For video playback, I discovered it to match the earlier mannequin at round 10 hours.
Sadly, that USB-C port doesn’t supply any sort of quick charging and the equipped 9W charger will take round 4 hours to completely cost the Fireplace HD 10’s battery. The Plus mannequin I’ve examined comes with wi-fi charging; slightly odd for a pill having to steadiness it on a charging pad however it works and is quicker than wired at 15W.
Amazon mentions a Wi-fi Charging Dock for Fireplace HD 10 Plus made by Anker, however this is not on sale on the time of writing.
As you most likely already know, Amazon makes use of its personal working system referred to as FireOS which relies on Android. Surprisingly, it’s the older Android 9 Pie – Google isn’t far off releasing Android 12. Nonetheless, that’s not likely related right here when there’s no actual signal that you just’re even utilizing Android.
The consumer interface could be very totally different from different Android tablets and is, as you would possibly count on, centered round Amazon’s providers and content material.
Whether or not this works for you largely will depend on whether or not you’re an Amazon buyer or plan to enroll to providers akin to Prime and Kindle Limitless.
Even should you’re used to regular Android tablets, you’ll get used to Amazon’s model after some time. The larger subject – as ever – is that there’s no Google Play Retailer. So don’t assume the apps you usually use might be obtainable.
There are many standard ones together with Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Fb, Spotify, TikTok, Sonos, Disney+ and plenty of extra. However you’ll be able to’t get Google Chrome (or different Google apps formally), Slack, Fortnite or banking apps akin to Monzo.
Alexa is, after all, right here in hands-free guise, so you’ll be able to ask her questions even when the pill is locked and with the display screen turned off.
Additionally, the Echo Present mode is again – oddly lacking from the earlier Fireplace HD 10. This lets you use the pill like one among Amazon’s good shows. There’s a easy toggle change within the drop-down menu for it, or you’ll be able to simply ask Alexa to allow Present Mode. It really works finest once you plug within the charger.
The 2021 Fireplace HD 10 remains to be amazingly low cost, beginning at £149.99 should you’re comfortable with 32GB of storage and adverts on the lockscreen. You’ll be able to leap to 64GB at £189.99 however there’s a microSD card slot in its place approach of including extra space.
The Plus mannequin I’ve examined begins at £179.99 so is just with the improve should you really need 30% extra RAM and wi-fi charging. As regular, should you don’t need adverts you’ll want to add £10/US$15 to the worth.
The Productiveness bundle Amazon begins at £259.97 and you too can get a extra primary bundle with a protecting case and NuPro display screen protector beginning at £202.97.
Within the US, the Fireplace HD 10 begins at US$149 at 32GB though is ‘Quickly out of inventory’ at on the time of writing. The Productiveness bundle begins at US$269.97.
Take a look at our chart of one of the best price range pill and finest Amazon Fireplace tablets should you’re undecided which to purchase but.
The Fireplace HD 10 remains to be among the finest price range tablets you should purchase, providing loads for not a lot cash.
It has an improved design, barely higher efficiency and different small upgrades – even when a better decision rear digicam and Bluetooth 5.Zero received’t matter to many.
If you need a 10in pill to entry standard leisure and social media apps then it would do the job very properly certainly, so long as there’s assist for the apps you utilize essentially the most. In 2021 there usually might be, though a number of the hottest cellular video games usually are not obtainable.
What about as a productiveness gadget? The Fireplace HD 10 Plus does a surprisingly good job, as long as your definition of productiveness is utilizing a phrase processor, spreadsheet and sending emails: utilizing Microsoft 365, basically.
After all, engaged on a small keyboard and show might be a sacrifice you’re not prepared to make. Finally the expertise is a compromise and properly behind what you’ll be able to count on from a price range Google Chromebook, not to mention a laptop computer or Microsoft Floor.
However that’s not the most important drawback: it’s that there simply aren’t sufficient productiveness apps right here: you’ll have to make use of Google, Slack and others through the online browser, which is much from ideally suited.
Amazon Fireplace HD 10 (2021): Specs
Decision: 1920 x 1080 (224 ppi)
Processor: Octa-core as much as 2 GHz
Storage: 32 or 64 GB (expandable by as much as 1TB)
RAM: 3GB (4B Plus)
Digital camera: 2Mp entrance, 5Mp rear
Connectivity: Twin-band Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0
Alexa-enabled: Sure, hands-free
Sound: Dolby Atmos, dual-stereo audio system, microphone
Battery Life: As much as 12 hours of blended use
Charging: USB-C (USB 2.0), Wi-fi charging (Plus)
Dimensions: 247 x 166 x 9.2mm
Colors: Black, Denim, Lavender and Olive (Plus solely in Slate)