Kindle Fire HD vs. Kobo Arc: Which is a better E-book Reader?

One of the most useful functions of a tablet is that you can use it as an e-book reader and carry around a virtual library with you, wherever you go. If you’re browsing the stores looking for a decent tablet that can double up as your e-book reader, read on to know if the Kindle Fire HD or the Kobo Arc are worth investing in.

Both these tablets are quite affordable and give you a decent display, WiFi connectivity and a nice amount of storage space. So you can browse the net, play games, watch videos and do more with either of these devices, in addition to using it to read your e-books.

Amazon’s Kindle Fire HD has a 7-inch screen with an HD LCD having a resolution of 1280X800 pixels and lets you videos at 720p resolution. There’s a 16 GB and a 32 GB model available and there’s free cloud storage from Amazon also with the Kindle Fire HD. The tablet is powered by a dual-core 1.2 GHz processor and 1 GB of RAM and runs on Android 4.0. A 1.3 MP front-facing camera lets you make video calls, while the battery promises a life of at least 11 hours on a single charge.

Kobo’s Arc has a slightly better 1.5 GHz dual-core processor with 1 GB of RAM, and also runs on Android 4.0. In terms of resolution, it’s similar to the Kindle Fire HD’s 1280X800 pixel one, but it comes with 3 storage options – 16 GB, 32 GB or 64 GB. And you can view videos at resolution up to 1280X800 pixels too. The battery offers 10 hours of continuous usage.

Both these tablets start at around $199 for the 16 GB model, and Kobo’s got over 2.5 million e-books, newspapers and magazines to offer, while Amazon’s got just over 1.2 million e-books on offer.… Read the rest

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New Features on Amazon’s Web Services We Would Love to See

Amazon is not usually known to be a company that loves to blow its own trumpet. But last week, when its CTO, Werner Vogels, took the stage at an event and promised that consumers would soon to get to see new, unbelievable offerings from Amazon’s Web Services, we couldn’t help but wonder what those could be. Here’s a list of a few things we would love to see:

Better analytics: Amazon recently announced that customers could run SAP’s HANA in-memory database on the platform for $0.99 per hour, and shell out an additional $2.50 for an extra-large EC2 instance. While this may seem like a rather expensive proposition of third-party services, we wish Amazon could release its own analytics technology for its customers.

Smaller portions of its infrastructure: As of now, Amazon charges its customers by the hour for using its platform. But with recent emergence of competition that is willing to charge customers for platform services even by the minute, maybe this is something Amazon would also want to get down to doing. It’s not just going to get cheaper for the customers, but would also ensure far more efficient usage of computing resources over Amazon.

More integration and PaaS capabilities: As customers, we’re always looking for something more on offer. And that’s just what we would love to see Amazon deliver. Amazon’s PaaS service, Elastic Beanstalk, has been quite a successful venture, and we wish it could offer customers a one-stop-shop for a variety of cloud services from Amazon and partners, from where customers can handpick whatever they wish to use and pay for those services. The model is quite like Amazon’s traditional business model, but we wonder if they can tweak it for their cloud offering too.

 … Read the rest

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Nook HD vs. Kindle Fire HD: Who Rules The World Of 7 Inch Tablets?





Just when you thought the tablet consumer was spoilt for choice, Barnes & Noble announced their entry into the world of tablets with the Nook HD and Nook HD+. Close on the heels of Amazon’s announcement of the new lineup of tablets under Kindle Fire HD, Barnes & Noble has brought out two variants of their Nook HD tablets. Let’s take a look at how the Nook compares with Amazon’s Kindle Fire HD tabs.

External looks: Both these tablets have a 7 inch HD screen. However, the B&N Nook HD has a slightly better resolution of 1440X900 pixels and 243 ppi, in comparison with the Kindle Fire HD’s 1280X800 pixel resolution and 216 ppi. Roughly the same size at first look, another advantage of the Nook HD is that it’s lighter than the Kindle Fire HD tab. Unfortunately, a big drawback of the Nook HD is the absence of a front-facing camera, which we think is quite essential in a tablet to be able to make video calls.

On the inside: The Nook HD has a slightly better 1.3GHz dual-core processor against Kindle Fire HD’s 1.2GHz dual-core version. Both tablets are capable of WiFi connectivity, but the cool thing about the Nook HD is that B&N is offering free WiFi in all their stores through their tab. Both the tablets run customized versions of Android 4.0, which hopefully can be upgraded to the Jelly Bean version shortly.

On the spec side, for $199, we’d say that front-facing camera notwithstanding, the Nook HD sure looks like it has a lot more to offer than Amazon’s Kindle Fire HD. But on the apps side, Amazon’s Appstore has over 50k apps on offer, while the B&N Appstore has just over 6k apps. The number of apps can gradually grow for sure, but we do wonder just how bad will users miss the front-facing camera in the Nook HD tab.… Read the rest

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