Amazon today took one more step in its strategy scale up its Kindle Fire tablet business. The company announced that it will now sell the two higher-end versions of the device, the Kindle Fire HD and Kindle Fire HD 8.9″, globally: pre-orders in 170 countries begins today with the first models shipping out June 13.
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Amazon Takes Its Two Kindle Fire HD Models To 170 Countries As It Ramps Up Its Amazon Appstore To Almost 200 Markets
You can take Amazon out of the jungle, but it’ll just create one elsewhere — at least that’s what the company is planning for its inner-city Seattle office complex. A tweaked proposal for Amazon’s three-block development, named “Rufus 2.0,” was run by Seattle’s Design Review Board yesterday, and it now includes a huge biodome structure with the notion that a “plant-rich environment has many positive qualities that are not often found in a typical office setting.” It’s five floors feature places to get work done, “dining, meeting and lounge spaces,” a pair of shops serving the general public and, of course, lots of plants and trees. We’ve included a few more renders of the multi-bubble glass house after the break, and you’ll find even more eye-candy in the source PDF. Forget technology — the competition for the coolest next-gen campus is on.
Source: Seattle.gov (PDF)
While Amazon Cloud Drive has been on quite the world tour as of late, Canadians have had to watch as seemingly everyone else gets the storage service first. Thankfully, Canucks can now do more than just twiddle their thumbs now that Cloud Drive has gone live in their country. Pricing is virtually on par with what Americans know, with a 5GB free tier and multiple paid tiers that start at $ 10 per year for 20GB. All the Cloud Drive-focused desktop and mobile apps are now available as well. Cloud Player isn’t an option when Amazon MP3 is still missing, but the expansion should otherwise give Canadians at least a small taste of what they’ve been missing in Amazon’s online world.
Virtual football enthusiasts excited for Madden 25 (it’s technically Madden 2014 marking 25 years of the franchise) may want to head over to Amazon if they’re serious about watching actual NFL games. The online retailer has an exclusive Anniversary Edition of the game up for pre-order, which comes bundled with a 17-week pass for both Madden Ultimate Team cards and computer and mobile access to NFL Sunday Ticket. On top of getting all the 2013 regular season’s out-of-market matches, DirecTV subscribers can also snag a $ 10-a-month discount on the TV version (normally $ 225) for one year with a pro bono MAX upgrade. Joystiq notes that only 100,000 copies are up for grabs, split evenly between the Xbox 360 and PS3 versions. All it takes to get in on the action starting August 27th is $ 100 — $ 40 more than the standard edition, which can net you up to $ 400 in total savings on the services. Hit up the source link if you’re ready to secure your copy.
Nate the greatest writes “It looks like those 4 month old rumors are true. Amazon has confirmed today that they have bought Liquavista, a Netherlands based screen tech company. There’s no info yet on how much Amazon paid to Samsung, but previous rumors suggested that the asking price was under $ 100 million. Amazon also isn’t talking about how they plan to use the electrowetting screen tech, but many are assuming that a Color Kindle is in the works.”
Read more of this story at Slashdot.
Amazon’s Cloud Player may have been accessible on PCs through browsers since its launch, but today Bezos & Co. have given the service a desktop app of its own. Once installed, the free program will detect and add music from iTunes and Windows Media Player to its library, and continue doing so as new songs are purchased from other storefronts. Naturally, tunes bought from the firm can be streamed and downloaded through the application, and even exported to iTunes. While there’s no sign of Linux support, the company says it’s working on a version just for Mac users. If you count yourself in Microsoft’s camp, hit the neighboring source link for the download.
Amazon has launched its Cloud Drive Photos app on iOS today, joining the Android app as a solution for avid mobile photo snappers to automatically have their creations uploaded in the cloud and organized for sharing and viewing. The app looks to take on Apple’s Photo Steam iCloud feature, as well as Google’s and Dropbox’s
Tonight NBC revealed it is bringing back comedy Community for a fifth season. While NBC has been criticized for shifting the premiere date for this last season and dumping showrunner Dan Harmon, Variety suggests its renewal may be related to something apart from the show. The Sony Pictures-produced show could have followed the path of Cougar Town to cable but there’s also new competition for content from sources like Netflix, Amazon and Hulu. All are willing to pay for quality original content and would love to snatch up the audience that’s already watching on NBC.
One needs only look at Arrested Development or the Kickstarter for Veronica Mars to see how much hype “saving” a show brings in the digital realm. Another boost for the show is likely to come from reruns on Comedy Central, all of which adds up to a renewal order which at one time seemed unlikely to happen. Finally, NBC has other elements that are certainly in play, like stabilizing a Thursday night lineup with familiar shows as it prepares for the Winter Olympics early next year. When the show comes back it will unfortunately be without Chevy Chase’s Pierce Hawthorne character, so a Journey to the Center of Hawkthorne 2 is probably not on the table. If you’re not familiar with the show’s pursuit of “six seasons and a movie” and wonder what all the hype is about, check after the break for one man’s theory of Community as a “postmodern masterpiece.”
Amazon.com has recently been developing a wide-ranging lineup of gadgets—including two smartphones and an audio-only streaming device—to expand its reach beyond the Kindle Fire.
Looking to save some coin on your tech purchases? Of course you are! In this roundup, we’ll run down a list of the freshest frugal buys, hand-picked with the help of the folks at Slickdeals. You’ll want to act fast, though, as many of these offerings won’t stick around long.
Sure, tablets and cameras discounted on the regular in our twice weekly roundup, but today an A/V system sees the big price drop. A Denon AVR-1613 receiver and Harmon Kardon HKTS 16 speaker bundle is reduced by over 50% with the aid of a simple discount code. All of the particulars, and the rest of the list, await on the other side of the break.
Two can play the discounted-tablet-for-Mother’s-Day game. Just a day after Barnes & Noble slashed Nook tablet prices across the board, Amazon has cut the prices of the 7-inch Kindle Fire HD to $ 179 (16GB) and $ 209 (32GB) for the occasion. Use the FIRE4MOM code at checkout until May 12th and you’ll pocket $ 20 that could be better spent on flowers… or apps, for that matter. The sale isn’t as far ranging as we’ve seen at the rival bookstore, but those whose moms thrive on Amazon Prime will likely be happy.
Amazon let its world domination plans be known last month when it asked developers to start submitting apps to line its virtual displays in more countries. While China was notably absent from immediate expansion plans, Amazon launched its Appstore there during the weekend, opening the doors to one of the biggest mobile device markets. As Reuters notes, the Google Play store is available in China, but only serves up free material, whereas Amazon’s Appstore has a selection of both free and paid software available for users. While the company launched its e-book store and e-reader apps in China last December, devices are still waiting for their ticket over. Now, with the release of the Appstore, we suspect it’s only a matter of time before the Kindle and Fire ranges make fashionably late appearances.
Amazon quietly launched its Appstore in China this weekend in a surprise move that paves the way for the rollout of Kindle devices in that country. At the same time, Amazon also debuted its Chinese-language Web site for developers (link via Google Translate), promising that they will soon have access to customers in 200 countries. A Sina Tech article (link via Google Translate) outlined why the Amazon Appstore might be an attractive alternative to Google Play for Chinese developers. Reasons include: easier access (Google Play isn’t widely available in China and most developers sell through third-party app stores); a more open and “friendly” environment (the article cited Kongregate’s 2011 ban as an example of problems with Google Play’s TOS); a worldwide customer base; and an attractive revenue sharing model. China had not been included in the list of 200 countries, including Brazil, Indonesia and South Korea, that Amazon recently said it would bring the Appstore to. In addition to the Kindle reading app and e-books, messaging apps are currently available for download, as well as popular games like Angry Birds and Temple Run. Amazon says it will offer popular games and apps from Chinese developers like Tencent and Sina. The launch of the Amazon Appstore in China comes less than a month after the company rolled out Cloud Drive there. The Kindle Store was launched in China at the end of last year, at the same time the Kindle iPhone and iPad apps became available to download for users in that country. There have been years of speculation that Amazon will finally release Kindle hardware in China, but the launch of its Amazon Appstore there is the most concrete step so far. Another clue is the possibility that a $ 99 Kindle Fire 7″ tablet will begin shipping this year. The low price point would help the device compete in China, where tablets are often sold for less than $ 100.
Details of what could be the first smaller Windows 8 tablet leaked Friday when Amazon briefly published a listing for an 8.1-in. Acer Iconia tablet.
Yesterday, we heard yet another rumor that Microsoft is working on a sub-10-inch tablet, something we heard before that back in April. The rumor yesterday said that Microsoft would be rolling out a 7.5-inch tablet early next year, but it looks like we might not have to wait that long to see a small-display Windows
It’s been less than a day since Activision and Infinity Ward officially announced their next Call of Duty installment, titled Call of Duty: Ghosts, but it’s already the best-selling video game on Amazon right now. The online retailer began pre-orders yesterday, and it’s already on top in several countries. According to Amazon’s Best Sellers list
Amazon Web Services (AWS) has launched a Global Certification Program, which will allow solutions architects, systems operations administrators, and developers to get proof of their cloud know-how.
Amazon’s new LOVEFiLM app has made its debut, with PS3 owners the first to experience the streaming media service’s new search, recommendation, and watchlist UI on their consoles. The update – which will eventually be pushed out to all LOVEFiLM Instant platforms, including Xbox 360, Wii U, and others – now allows subscribers to build
The governments of South American countries, including Brazil and Peru, are in a tussle with Amazon.com to see who will become the digital king of the jungle.
terrancem writes “The Seattle-based Amazon.com has applied for its brand to be a generic top-level domain name (.amazon), but South American governments argue this would prevent the use of this internet address for environmental protection, the promotion of indigenous rights and other public interest uses. Along with dozens of other disputed claims to names including “.patagonia” and “.shangrila”, the issue cuts to the heart of debates about the purpose and governance of the internet.”
Read more of this story at Slashdot.
Bloomberg is reporting that Amazon has plans to release its own television set-top box later this year. The device will stream video over the internet from Amazon’s video service catalog. From the article: “Amazon Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos is pushing the company into a broadening array of hardware, including tablets, electronic readers and a planned smartphone. … The set-top box is being developed by Amazon’s Lab126 division, based in Cupertino, California — the city that’s also home to Apple. Lab126 has toyed with building connected television devices for several years, the people familiar with the effort said. … Plans for pricing couldn’t be determined. Amazon’s typical strategy is to sell hardware at competitive prices, sometimes at a loss, with the intent of making up for discounts through sales of content, including books and movies. Amazon could also use the set-top box to promote its online store.
Read more of this story at Slashdot.
Amazon Web Services is looking to expand its security offerings with hosted intrusion protection appliances and more extensive encryption features, as it seeks to increase the level of protection users can get in its cloud.
First time accepted submitter bakerharis writes with an article about Amazon’s attempt to break into creating conventional television style episodic shows, but with a different model from the manistream media companies. “Amazon’s foray into TV production is unique in the way it saves money. Every spring, traditional TV networks like ABC, NBC, CBS and Fox order dozens of pilots and show them to focus groups. Executives pick just a handful to make into series. Then, they commission 13 episodes of each promising show, with each one potentially costing a few million dollars. Many episodes won’t ever air if the first few don’t attract big audiences.” Amazon, instead, has created 14 pilot shows, and is letting a cross section of customers in the U.S., UK, and Germany react to them to see which shows might be worth making more of.
Read more of this story at Slashdot.
E-commerce giant Amazon looks like it is gearing up for the latest chapter in its international expansion: an operation in Russia. According to this article in Forbes (in Russian) the company has opened its first office in the country, headed by Arkady Vitrouk. Vitrouk is the former general director of ABC-Atticus, a publishing group owned by media barron Alexander Mamut.
Today it’s become apparent that Amazon’s recent purchase of the social networking website Goodreads has blocked another heavy hitter from teaming up. The report comes from a source who says none other than Apple was about to sign a deal with Goodreads for book recommendations with their iBooks program through Goodreads when Amazon showed up
Songza, a free streaming music service that has expert-made playlists and runs on the web and various touch screen platforms, has raised $ 3.8 million according to a SEC filing. We’ve reached out to both companies to get further detail and will update this post. A quick check on AngelList now names Amazon.com as an “unconfirmed” investors.
Warby Parker Opens Retail Store In NYC, With Boston Up Next, Beats Google & Amazon To The Offline Punch
Hip online eyewear startup Warby Parker has, over the last two years, been partnering with boutiques to open “stores-within-stores,” or small Warby Parker showrooms, where customers could try on their eyeglasses in 3-D. These showrooms popped up in L.A., Nashville, San Francisco and many others. Today Warby Parker officially announced its first, flagship retail store in SoHo in New York City.
Hapyrus has launched FlyData, technology that enables it to automatically upload and migrate data to Amazon Redshift, the data-warehouse service that can scale to petabyte size. Amazon has claimed that Redshift will increase the speed of query performance when analyzing any size data set, using the same SQL-based business intelligence tools analysts use today. Hapyrus Co-Founder Koichi Fujikawa says their service, a big data router, makes Redshift even more effective and an alternative to Hadoop and Hive, the most widely recognized combination used for processing and analyzing data. After setup, FlyData runs in the background, moving the data to Redshift. Fujikawa said Hapyrus sets up a virtual private cloud on AWS. Customers can integrate their own virtual private network to transfer the data. Hapyrus competes against the likes of Informatica and Talend. Its current focus is on integrating with AWS, but going forward it will integrate data from a variety of sources. Fujikawa said in an email that Informatica and Talend provide complex data-integration solutions for big enterprise customers — mainly for on-premise systems. “We provide our data-integration service for cloud components like Redshift for any size of companies, from startups to relatively big organizations,” he said. Fujikawa says Redshift can be 10 times faster than Hadoop and Hive. Customers he hears from say they are seeking alternatives for the everyday kind of work that needs to get done. They can get stymied by the time and the expense that a query takes when using Hadoop and Hive. But there are also complexities with using Redshift, as Airbnb discovered: First, in order to load your data into Redshift, it has to be in either S3 or Dynamo DB already. The default data loading is single threaded and could take a long time to load all your data. We found breaking data into slices and loading them in parallel helps a lot. On its nerd blog, Airbnb said Redshift lacks some of the features that come with Hadoop. But data analysts are liking it so much that they want to use it pretty much exclusively. The Airbnb nerd blog makes the point that, in the end, Redshift and Hadoop may be more compatible than anything else. “Redshift, as a data warehouse, should be compared to Vertica, Greenplum, AsterData, Impala, Hadapt, and CitusData,” said Drawn to Scale Co-Founder Bradford Stephens in a recent email interview. “They’re just different things.” The smallest of startups take
Just as industry watchers have predicted, the race to the bottom for cloud computing prices continues.
Amazon launched its AutoRip service back in January, allowing you to get a free MP3 version of a music CD that you bought from Amazon, going back as far as 1998 with the purchase history. Now, the e-tail giant is offering vinyl record owners the same deal. If you’ve ever bought a vinyl record on
After nearly a year on the market, Amazon has finally blessed its Cloud Drive apps for Windows and Mac with a file syncing folder. Starting today, users can access their documents, music and photos across multiple computers — a feature that we’ve seen from the likes of Google Drive, Dropbox and SkyDrive for quite some time. While this feature is far from groundbreaking, it does manage to make Amazon’s service a respectable alternative to cloud storage’s reigning heavy hitters. Toss in its 5GB of free storage and Cloud Drive could become a worthy contender for those who are looking for a new or additional place to house their digital collections.
Via: The Verge
At the end of last year, Netflix suffered a prolonged outage because Amazon’s cloud services, which Netflix uses to host most of its infrastructure, went down. At the time, Amazon’s own video services continued to function without any issues. Last night, it was Amazon’s turn to suffer from a multi-hour outage. According to a number of tips we received, as well as a number of reports on Twitter and other social networks, Amazon’s Instant Video service and Prime Instant Video went down sometime in the late afternoon yesterday and remained offline for a large part of the evening. So far, Amazon hasn’t publicly acknowledged last night’s outage and its @amazonvideo account has remained silent since the first reports came in. Amazon Web Services, which powers Amazon’s Video Services, continued to work without issues last night. One of our readers provided us with a boilerplate email he received from Amazon last night after he complained about the outage: Hello, We’re sorry for the trouble you had while trying to connect to Amazon Instant Video. If you try again, you should be able to connect without encountering further problems. We look forward to seeing you again soon. We have contacted Amazon for more details about this outage and will update this post once we hear back from them. Hey @AmazonVideo maybe mention VOD is down right now. It's nice when the marketing tweets come with useful info between them.— Ry4an Brase (@Ry4an) March 30, 2013 Seriously, I get emails from @amazon every day, you'd think they could use one of those to let us know why @AmazonVideo is down.— Aaron Gardner (@Aaron_RS) March 30, 2013 @amazonvideo #fail. A little notice of when you're going to do maintenance would be nice. I expect a credit, or will cancel Amazon Prime.— (@djdeedle) March 30, 2013
Amazon.com will acquire Goodreads, a website that recommends books.
RougeFemme writes “Amazon has been placing lockers in brick-and-mortar retail stores, such as 7-Eleven, for pickup of online purchases. Walmart plans to pilot a similar program, presumably making it easier to pick up online purchases at Wal-Mart. ‘Wal-Mart hopes its network of physical stores, which number about 4,000 in the United States, will give it an edge as consumers increasingly use smart phones while they shop. Wal-Mart has been testing the shipping of online orders from a small number of its physical stores for about two years. In 2013, the company plans to expand this program from about 25 stores currently to a total of roughly 50 stores. … Two-thirds of the U.S. population live within five miles of a Wal-Mart store.”
Read more of this story at Slashdot.
Amazon Web Services Launches CloudHSM, A Dedicated Hardware Security Appliance For Managing Cryptographic Keys
Amazon just announced the launch of CloudHSM, a new service that provides Amazon Web Services users who need to meet corporate, contractual and regulatory compliance requirements for data security a way to do so by using a dedicated Hardware Security Module (the ‘HSM’ in CloudHSM) within the Amazon cloud. Until now, Amazon argues, the only option for many companies that use its cloud services was to store their most sensitive data – or the encryption keys to it – in their own on-premise data centers. This, of course, made it hard for these companies to fully migrate their applications to the cloud. The new service, Amazon writes, can be used to support “a variety of use cases and applications, such as database encryption, Digital Rights Management (DRM), and Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) including authentication and authorization, document signing, and transaction processing.” The actual appliances are Luna SA modules from SafeNet, Inc. The new CloudHSM service uses Amazon’s Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) and the appliances are provisioned inside the user’s VPC with an IP address the user specifies. The service, Amazon says, provides businesses with secure key storage and protects these keys with “tamper-resistant HSM appliances that are designed to comply with international (Common Criteria EAL4+) and U.S. Government (NIST FIPS 140-2) regulatory standards for cryptographic modules.” Because the HSMs are located close to the user’s EC2 cloud computing instances, network latency should be very low. All of this, however, doesn’t come cheap. The upfront cost to provision a CloudHSM is $ 5,000 and the hourly cost are $ 1.88 per hour, which comes out to $ 1,373 on average per month. For businesses that need this kind of security, that’s probably a small price to pay, but this is clearly not a service that’s geared toward startups that just want to ensure their encryption keys and data are stored safely. The HSM client software can load balance requests across two or more CloudHSMs, though Amazon notes that it can take “several weeks” to provision more than two HSMs.
Two mammoth rocket engines that helped boost Apollo astronauts to the moon have been fished out of the Atlantic.
Last year, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced that he would be hiring a team of explorers to locate the remains of the Apollo 11 rocket and recover them from the ocean floor. Almost an exact year later, Bezos has announced that the Apollo 11 rockets have indeed been recovered and are in the process of
vu1986 writes “Google launched its EC2 rival, Google Compute Engine, last June, it set some high expectations. Sebastian Standil’s team at Scalr put the cloud infrastructure service through its paces — and were pleasantly surprised at what they found. A note about our data: The benchmarks run to collect the data presented here were taken twice a day, over four days, then averaged. When a high variance was observed, we took note of it and present it here as intervals for which 80 percent of observed data points fall into.”
Read more of this story at Slashdot.
Amazon Web Services (AWS) has expanded its Elastic Beanstalk to include Node.js, in an effort to make it easier to deploy and manage application development on its cloud.
We’ve heard a lot about a possible Amazon smartphone last year, and rumors have been all over the place as far as what to expect and when to expect it. However, the latest rumor is that the supposed Amazon smartphone is delayed yet again and won’t see a reveal until later this year. The phone