New Amazon Tablet: iPad Killer?

Amazon announces new Kindle Fire to compete against Apple.

By SHARE

There's a new tablet in town and this one's only $199.

At a packed press event in New York today, Amazon unveiled its new tablet, the Kindle Fire. Executives told Bloomberg Businessweek the tablet is a "souped-up version" of its popular Kindle E-reader.

The Fire will be shipped beginning Nov. 15 and is the latest attempt to compete with Apple's iPad, which starts at $499. The new tablet is smaller than the iPad at only 7 inches in diameter, will run Google Inc,'s Android software and at $199 significantly undercuts Apple's pricing.

[Check out U.S. News Weekly, now available on iPad.]

"We're building premium products at non-premium prices," Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos said during the press conference.

The Kindle Fire offers users a touchscreen, dual-core processor, unlimited data storage via a free storage cloud and access to 18 million movies, songs, magazines, books and TV shows through amazon.com.

The Kindle Fire does not have cellular connection, only wi-fi and does not offer users a camera or microphone.

Bezos told Bloomberg Businessweek, however, that he's confident the new Kindle Fire will compete better against the iPad than past products created by Hewlett-Packard and Blackberry maker Research in Motion 's did.

[See our slide show in opinion: 5 Ways New Media Are Changing Politics.]

Janney Capital Markets analysts predict that the Kindle Fire will ship between 2 million and 3 million tablets in the fourth quarter.

Bezos also revealed a set of three new E-readers, the non-touch model starting at $79. A drastic price cut from the previously lowest-priced Kindle, which sells for $114, the Kindle Touch E-reader, which has no buttons, but has a new touch screen system with a tap-menu touch zone on the top, will cost $99. The new top-of-the-line Kindle touch with 3g will sell for $149.

Before the new Kindle Fire was even announced, Amazon shares rose $8.59 to $232.80. Apple shares rose $3.46 to $407.72.