Showing posts with label KindleFire. Show all posts
Showing posts with label KindleFire. Show all posts

Oyster Books: App Review

Note: Oyster Books service is being discontinued January 2016. They are no longer accepting new subscribers. And all service will cease come January. Unfortunately this means I will have to find another e-book subscription service. I've absolutely loved the year and a half I've been subscribed to Oyster, I used it more than Netflix. I'm voracious reader. I go through 3+ books a week. I will be trying out Scribd's e-book service soon, and I'll let you all know how that is.

After my disappointing 30 day trial with Kindle Unlimited (I found it too limited). I decided to try Oyster Books. You also get a free 30 day trial, but the difference is Oyster has A LOT of books. And A LOT of popular titles to choose from. It's like the "Netflix" of books, literally. Also, if any of your friends sign up with your link, you both get a $15 credit, which they will deduct from each month, instead of charging your credit card. Normally it's $9.99 a month, which is not bad considering you can read any book, anytime.

Also, what's great is once you've already downloaded a book on Oyster Books, even if you're not connected to the internet, you can still read it. You only have to be connected to the internet to browse for books, and download. You read the books within the Oyster App. It still lets you change the font, font size, and background color. It automatically remembers where in the book you left off.

Use my Link HERE to sign up for your free 30 day trial, 
and both of us will get a $15 credit towards another free month! 

There a ton of different genres to choose from.
Please Click Below to Continue, this post is Picture Heavy! 

My Thoughts on Kindle Unlimited.

I am a huge fan of constantly shop on Amazon, I buy the majority of my books and music on Amazon. I rent movies on Amazon. I've even upgraded every year that a new Kindle Fire device is released. (Since 2011).

I was pretty excited to find out about Kindle Unlimited.600,000 titles free to read, including audio books for $9.99 a month. Sort of like the 'Netflix' of books. Amazon includes a 30 day free trial so you can test drive Kindle Unlimited, so I decided to take the plunge.

Tip: You can download the Amazon Kindle App free on pretty much any mobile device, so you don't actually need a Kindle to use this service. 

[Kindle App for Android or iPhone]

Navigating Kindle Unlimited: From your Kindle you go to the store, and there's an option called 'Kindle Unlimited' that will show you all the titles listed under your Kindle Unlimited membership.

Click below to read more!

Kindle Fire HDX WiFi Issues.

I wanted to blog about an issue I've been having with my Kindle Fire HDX 8.9". My HDX will periodically drop the wifi connection, (but still show it's connected with a perfect signal). Webpages won't load, Apps will say I have a connection problem and to check my wifi. It's completely frustrating because for a few hours it will behave, I can surf the net just fine. But then it will start acting up dropping the signal every few minutes (even though it's still showing it's connected to a perfect signal). I have to manually turn the wifi off/on to reset the antenna. Or switch airplane mode on/off. Which gets old real fast when it does it 5-6 times in a row!

I know it wasn't our home router causing the issue, because the same issue would happen when I used my T-mobile 4G internet through tethering and when I used public wifi hotspots. The HDX would just drop the signal while I was in the middle of looking at webpages. (Just to be sure, a few times I did restart our home router but that didn't resolve the issue).

This has actually been going on for a few months now. It started off as a minor annoyance and I guess I was hoping it would somehow be resolved through a system update. Doing a hard reset, (holding the power button for 20 seconds, then restarting the device) did not help. Restoring the device back to factory settings did not help either, and that was the last resort because it wipes out all your files. I did that last night, and today it was still having the same issue.

I finally got fed up and called Amazon tonight, but the CSR I got had a very hard to understand accent and I don't think either of us was understanding the other. So after I hung up I jumped on the Help page and started a chat session with another CSR. I thought maybe they would understand the problem more if they could see it in writing. After some troubleshooting, they are sending me a replacement device that should be here Monday and I have to send back my defective one.

I think maybe the internal antenna is defective, after doing a search on the Kindle Forums, I've found a few others are having the same exact issue. I really hope the replacement they send resolves the issue or I'm not going to be very happy. I had no issues at all when I owned the Kindle Fire HD, it's only the HDX that I'm now having issues with.

EDITED TO ADD: Replacement Kindle HDX just arrived this afternoon (1/12/14). So hopefully this one doesn't have the same issues. We'll see. Thank goodness for warranties.

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Kindle Fire HDX 8.9" Comparison

Every year since the original Kindle Fire came out in 2011, I've upgraded to the latest version. I've owned three generations of the Kindle Fire now. (Though I always sell the previous model). The latest is the Kindle Fire HDX 8.9" 16GB. It's faster and lighter than last years Kindle Fire HD. There's also a rear camera now besides the front camera and Amazon has made better placement and size of the power & volume buttons on the HDX.

The volume and power buttons are now on the back of the Kindle Fire HDX and much easier to find. (They were on the edges of the Kindle Fire HD and almost invisible to the naked eye). The HDX has a square boxy shape that I don't like as much as the sleek curved shape of last years Kindle Fire HD. I wish the rubber grip finish went around all the edges like it did on the HD. On the HDX there is a plastic part where the speakers & rear camera are. The HDX is incredibly lighter, you can feel the difference when you hold each model in your hands.

Comparison: While the screen size is still the same, Kindle Fire HDX is slighter smaller than Kindle Fire HD.  (HDX dimensions: 9.1, 6.2, 0.31. versus HD dimensions: 9.4, 6.4, 0.35)

The Home Screen has also changed. On Kindle Fire HD there was a little star symbol you would press to access your favorites. On Kindle HDX you swipe up from the bottom to access favorites. The new feature isn't as convenient. On the HD If I was on Facebook and wanted to switch apps I would just hit the star to access my favorites. On HDX I have to swipe up- BUT that will only show recently accessed apps... so if you want to switch programs but you haven't recently accessed the app- you will have to go all the way back out to the home screen to your favorites list.

The good features are the power and volume buttons. They are huge on the HDX now. They are located on the back instead of the sides like HD. The rear camera also has a flash. The response time for apps is so much quicker now because of the faster processor and ram. There's literally no lag time switching apps. Typing on the keyboard is more realistic because there's no delay anymore. It's lightning fast. The screen is a little cooler in color than Kindle Fire HD which had a warmer display- that's taking some getting used to for me. But pictures and videos are gorgeous.

As always it takes some getting used to when you upgrade. I really do love the Kindle Fire HDX, there's just minor changes from Kindle Fire HD, some good, some different. But all in all I'm pleased with it.

App wise: You would think the Amazon App store would have added Instagram since Kindle Fire HDX now has a rear camera... but nope. That still takes some fanangling, but you CAN install Instagram and other Android apps that the Amazon App store might not have.

For Kindle Fire HDX models: 

Step 1: Download APK Installer free from the Amazon App store.

Step 2: Go to SETTINGS: APPLICATIONS: Then for 'Allow Apps From Unknown Sources' select: ON.

Step 3: Go to Silk Browser go to website: and download 1MobileMarket store app for free.

Step 4: Install 1MobileMarket with an APK installer App.

Step 5: Use the 1MobileMarket App to find and install Instagram & other Android apps to your Kindle Fire HDX.

Other Kindle Fire Blog Posts: 

(1st Generation) Jan 2012: I ♥ ♥ ♥ my Kindle Fire!

(2nd Generation) Nov 2012: My Kindle Fire HD 8.9 arrived a week early! Yay!

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My Kindle Fire HD 8.9 arrived a week early! Yay!

What a surprise I got on Friday morning. An email from Amazon saying my Kindle Fire HD 8.9" (16GB) was shipping that morning! (It was supposed to ship November 21st). Being the techy geek girl I am, I picked one day shipping when I pre-ordered so later that afternoon it was delivered! Whoo hoo!

Being even geekier, I made my husband bring it in the car when he picked me up from the train station after work; (we stopped by my parents house to give my 18 year old brother his belated birthday gift). I just couldn't wait until I got home to open the box and check out my new Kindle! And... wow! Compared to the original Kindle Fire 7", the 8.9" is huge! Even though it weighs just a few ounces more than the original, it somehow feels lighter in my hands. It's also much thinner.

(Click on pictures to enlarge for better quality).

 Size comparison: The original Kindle Fire 7" next to the Kindle Fire HD 8.9"

 This is a bit hard to see, but the new Kindle Fire HD is MUCH slimmer

The new home screen- (with Amazon home screen recommendations turned off)

The new HD screen is so much more vibrant in color than the original Kindle Fire. The speakers are also better placed. And... there's now actual volume buttons on the side!

 Larger & easier to use keyboard

 Favorite's Toolbar

I have used my original Kindle Fire EVERY single day since I got it. I just stopped using it on Friday when the new one arrived. So let's talk pro's & con's between the two.

  • Bigger Screen
  • Vibrant HD Display
  • Slimmer design & more comfortable to hold.
  • TV & Movie's sound amazing with the dolby audio.
  • The keyboard is bigger and more comfortable to use. And now it even underlines your miss spelled words in red so you can correct them! 
  • Amazon Silk browser is faster & more compatible with different websites. On the older model some websites wouldn't cooperate and let me scroll so I would have to use Opera Mini browser to get around that.
  • Volume controls on the outside now!
  • Speakers are spaced out better
  • Finally a webcam & mic to Skype or take pictures and videos! (and this program I bought gives you even more options for the camera/video).
  • No more flash. Which means I can't view videos on 6abc or CNN, etc. Because Adobe is no longer making it for Android or mobile devices. Which means on older websites that still use flash instead of HTML5 you cannot view videos. (Original Kindle Fire had flash installed).
  • Certain games that you may have purchased for the original are not compatible yet with the Kindle Fire HD 8.9". (Sims Free Play is now compatible!)
  • Silk Browser seems to crash more often if you have 'Accelerate Pages' box checked in browser options. (Maybe an update will address this) (Update has addressed this!)
  • TV & Movies sound amazing with the dolby audio, but I found playing music through the speakers didn't have the same quality. And there's no equalizer in the newer model.
  • Lot's of Ad's. Supposedly you can pay $15 to disable all the ad's permanently. But, I did find in settings/applications you can turn off some of the recommendations. The only thing you can't disable is the ad's that show up on the screen when it's locked. Like I said though, you can pay a fee to disable them. It doesn't bother me too much yet though. 
These are the kinds of ad's you'll see when the screen is locked. They can be disabled for a fee. The recommendations you can hide in your settings.  
Another con for some people is the fact that the Amazon App Store doesn't have as vast a selection as the Google Play Store. That doesn't bother me too much either because they have most of the app's I use. (Facebook, Twitter, Pandora, Netflix, Pinterest, Ebay, etc).

But, I did discover a way to get around this. I stumbled upon a mobile site called: You can download so many more free Android app's & games for your Kindle Fire. To install the 1Mobile App to access the store on your Kindle, you have to go to settings/device and select on for 'Allow installation of applications from unknown sources'.

Of course, there is always a chance an app may not work or be compatible. Most of the programs I've downloaded so far have worked though. (I downloaded Instagram! The Amazon App Store doesn't even have that yet! And it works just fine on my new Kindle).

Apps I've downloaded from the Market that work on my Kindle Fire HD:

I'm still getting used to things that differ from the original, but all in all so far, I'm pretty pleased with my new Kindle Fire HD.

And, because that shiny new Kindle Fire HD is now on my Amazon credit card. I am selling my original Kindle Fire 7" 8GB on eBay. It comes with the original box, original charger, 2 screen protectors, a stylus & a cute vintage sleeve case. It is in pristine condition with no scratches on the screen. (Reserve is $120).
(I do use Amazon Associates, but not because I've made any money- because I haven't! lol! But I like that I can show a picture/link with a product when I'm blogging. Plus I do recommend for their low prices. That or Ebay!

So Excited! Pre-ordered the new Kindle Fire HD!

So excited! I've been following the news very closely about the release of a newer bigger Kindle Fire from I've owned the original Kindle Fire since it came out on it's release date in 2011. I love it, I use it every day, on the train commuting, at home in bed, etc. (Here's my blog entry on the original Kindle Fire).

This afternoon was's press release to talk about the new products. (I was following along on Twitter for all the updates!) They are releasing 3 different new Kindle Fires. Kindle Fire HD 7" & 8.9". Plus a Kindle Fire HD 4G. Kindle Fire HD 8.9" also comes in either 16GB or 32GB storage. (I ordered the 16GB). They are available for pre-order on and will be released November 20th, 2012. I will be selling my original Kindle Fire once my new one arrives. :-)

Some of the new features: (This was taken from Amazon's website.)
  • 1920x1200 HD display with polarizing filter and anti-glare technology for rich color and deep contrast from any viewing angle
  • Exclusive Dolby audio and dual stereo speakers for crisp, booming sound without distortion
  • High performance 1.5Ghz dual-core processor with Imagination PowerVR 3D graphics core for fast and fluid performance
  • Dual-band, dual-antenna Wi-Fi for 40% faster downloads and streaming
  • Over 22 million movies, TV shows, songs, magazines, books, audiobooks, and popular apps and games such as Facebook, Netflix, Twitter, HBO GO, Pandora, and Angry Birds
  • Integrated support for Facebook, Twitter, Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo! and more, as well as Exchange calendar, contacts, and email
  • Free Skype video calls with front-facing HD camera
  • Free unlimited cloud storage for all your Amazon content 

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Kindle Fire Issues

I LOVE my Kindle Fire. I use it every day. I use it on the train to read or listen to music or browse the web. (I use my T-Mobile Sidekick 4G as a router). I use it on the train platform waiting for my train because there's free wi-fi at 30th Street Station. At work on breaks I might read a book or look at a magazine. At home sometimes instead of my laptop I'll browse the internet and read books before bed. Sometimes I watch Netflix on it too.

I've had my Kindle Fire since the day it was released. (About 5 months). When I would play a game and then exit the game, sometimes there would be this burned image of the game on my screen sort of invisible. I thought it was a just a glitch, so I'd restart my Kindle and it would be fine.

But then it started doing it with other things. Sometimes the search bar would burn into the screen & the navigation bar, so that when I rotated my Kindle I would have 2 dark stripes running alone the screen and if you looked closer you could see the ghosted icons. That wasn't going away even when I would restart. I would sometimes get the keyboard burned into the screen, or the icons on your home screen. It was getting really irritating. I tried to doing a factory reset which wipes out everything from your Kindle Fire, but that did not help. The ghosting was still happening.

I searched for the issue on the Amazon website, on their Kindle Fire Help Forum. There was topic about the ghosting and burned images. It seems a lot of people are having this issue. It's some sort of defect with some of the Kindle Fires.

I contacted Amazon by using their 'Contact Us' button. They must be there 24 hours because I called on a Saturday night at 9:30pm. The customer service rep asked if I had done a reset (holding the button down for 20 seconds). I told him I had done a factory reset and that hadn't resolved the ghosting on the screen.

He told me Amazon would send me a replacement. I just had to send the damaged one back in the box of the replacement with the prepaid UPS label they would email me. They ask for the last 4 digits of one of the credit cards on your account. If they don't receive the damaged device back within 30 days they will charge your account the full price for the Kindle Fire plus shipping.

My replacement Kindle Fire arrived in 2 days! (So I didn't have to go through Kindle withdraw too long, hehe!). Then I packed up my old Kindle and we dropped it off at a UPS store to be mailed. Amazon got my old device back within 2 days also.

Soooo... just beware my Kindle Fire fans. This is an issue with some of the devices. If your Kindle is under warranty Amazon will replace it. My 2nd Kindle Fire is working perfectly and I hope it does so after 5 months of use. Hopefully there will be no need for anymore replacements!

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I ♥ ♥ ♥ my Kindle Fire!

When I last wrote about the Kindle Fire, I was still unsure, whether it would live up my expectations. There were so many conflicting articles online about what it would do or what it couldn't do.

I've had my Kindle Fire for a little over 2 months now and I can say it has definitely lived up to my expectations. I absolutely LOVE it. The 7 inch touch screen is really vibrant. I love it's compact size. It's a bit heavier than I expected it to be, but I've gotten used to it.

I love that even if I'm waiting for my train in the freezing cold with gloves on- the touch screen responds! I don't even have to take my gloves off! That is so neat to me, considering most touch screens won't respond when you have gloves on! The keyboard is a nice size when you have your Kindle Fire in landscape mode, it's almost like typing on a real keyboard. I've heard people have had issues with the sensitivity of the touch screen, but I haven't had any.

It's true that you don't have access to the actual Android Market. You have to go through the Amazon App Store, but they have been pretty good at adding all of the apps I normally use. Plus they offer a free paid app every day for free! I've gotten a few good ones that way! (Monopoly, Drawing Pad). I also own Sim City Deluxe and the graphics are amazing on that!

My Apps
I use my Kindle Fire every day on the train and at home. I love that on the train I can use my T-mobile Sidekick 4G as a mobile router so I can browse the internet on my Kindle Fire when there are no hot spots available. (I have unlimited high speed internet from T-mobile). Plus I'm lucky that when I'm waiting for my train home, 30th Street Station has free wi-fi!

My library offers free e-books now. So I'm constantly checking out books. There's also a lot of free books & classics available in the Amazon Kindle store. And I've also purchased a few books.

Just some of my books.
The Kindle Fire only has 6GB of internal storage. I have a bunch of books, 1 movie, photos, music & apps installed, and I still have 3GB left. Plus I love the Amazon Cloud Storage. You can store unlimited music on your cloud drive. (You can only access your cloud drive when connected to the internet). The other neat thing about the cloud storage is if you remove a book or app from your Kindle Fire, it will still be in your cloud drive- to be downloaded again when you want it.

My music
Movies I've downloaded from Amazon.
I love that I have access to Netflix & Pandora. I only used the Amazon Prime for the free month Amazon gave me. (I still love my Netflix, there's more variety). With headphones the sound on the Kindle Fire is amazing! Very rich sound & bass. Without headphones... I wish they had included two more speakers on each side, because you do have to turn the volume up to it's maximum to hear shows well. (Sometimes I plug in a portable speaker when watching movies without headphones).

I've tried out a few magazine subscriptions on my Kindle from the Amazon newstand... though I still prefer paper magazines. The actual paper subscriptions are much cheaper too.

The Amazon Silk browser, isn't as fast as Firefox or Internet Explorer. But it does support flash. I have run into a few websites that weren't compatible with Silk, so they showed up a bit funny. (Wouldn't scroll right, etc). But for the most part I can browse more websites on my Kindle Fire than compared to my cell phones browser. Facebook & Twitter are viewed in the mobile Android format.

All in all, I've had no regrets on purchasing my Kindle Fire. It's an amazing little device. I take it with me everywhere. I don't regret that it doesn't have a camera or microphone- my cell phone has those anyway. The pro's definitely outweigh the few con's I've mentioned. The price was also a factor in my purchasing it. You can't go wrong for $199! It is worth every dollar!

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Jumping on the e-reader bandwagon...

I pre-ordered an Amazon Kindle Fire a few weeks ago. I've always liked the Kindle, but I said I would never get one until they were color. I like the e-book concept but for something so pricy I want to be able to do more than just read books on it. Amazon store credit offered 6 months with no interest on purchases over $150 so I applied and was approved. Still at $199, it's about half the price of other color e-readers & tablets currently available. Now to wait for the Kindle Fire to be released! (Nov 15th).

The Kindle Fire is going to operate on Android OS. But a few of the articles online have me a bit worried because it seems like we may not have access to the actual Android Market, but have to download apps through the Amazon App Store. The screenshot shows a Facebook App icon, but there's no Facebook App available through the Amazon App Store. So they are either going to be adding more apps before the release of the Kindle Fire, or perhaps Facebook is already built into the Kindle Fire?

I guess we will see...  besides being able to read books, I want to be able to browse the internet, blog, access Facebook, Twitter, etc. I would like to be able to watch Netflix. I love the idea that I could access my online recipes and be able to cook in the kitchen without dragging my laptop downstairs. This is what I want out of the Kindle Fire. Kindle Fire owners will be given a free month trial to Amazon Prime which has unlimited movies & TV shows, but a lot of the shows I watch aren't available yet, but Netflix has them! (Family Ties, Malcolm in the Middle, Bernie Mac, etc).

Owners of the Kindle Fire will have unlimited Amazon Cloud Storage. I started uploading all of my music today. I like that you will have unlimited cloud storage for musics, apps, books, etc. The Kindle Fire will only have 8GB of internal space. (Of course you'll have to have a working wi-fi connection to access your files!) It doesn't really bother me that the Kindle Fire will not have a camera/web cam. I have my phone or camera to take pictures. And I rarely ever Skype.

One of the things I love is that my local library now has an e-book site! So I can check out free books and read them on the Kindle. I've actually started taking out books to read on the Android Kindle App on my phone. It's a bit smaller to read books on my phone; but I'm really enjoying it so I can't wait to read them on the Kindle Fire which has a bigger screen!

I guess it remains to be seen whether the Kindle Fire will live up to my expectations. If not I suppose I can always return it and get a Nook Color. :-p

Edited to add: Amazon released a statement this week (11/11/11) that the Kindle Fire will have access to Netflix, Twitter, Facebook, Pandora apps! :-)

(I do use Amazon Associates, but not because I've made any money- because I haven't! lol! But I like that I can show a picture/link with a product when I'm blogging. Plus I do recommend for their low prices. That or Ebay!)

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