Amazon launches Kindle Fire HDX tablet range

Two new tablets comprise the new Kindle Fire HDX range, one of which comes packing a rear-facing camera

Amazon Kindle Fire HDX range

The new Kindle Fire HDX range includes a 7-inch model and an 8.9-inch model, both of which are slimmer and lighter than their counterparts from last year's Kindle Fire HD range.

Despite the trimmed-down size, both models have significantly upgraded display capabilities. The 8.9-inch HDX features a 2560 x 1600 resolution display, making for a density of 339 ppi, and the 7-inch has a 1920x1200 display that produces a density of 323ppi.

The HDX range is powered by new Kindle Fire OS 3.0, referred to as ‘Mojito', and runs on a quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor at 2.2 GHz that the firm claims will provide three times the processing power of previous versions.

Both models come with a front-facing camera, however the 8.9-inch HDX also features one on its rear – a first for the Kindle range.

This camera offers 8MP of resolution, electronic image stabilisation, an LED flash and a lens with a decently wide aperture of f/2.2, just a little wider than the f/2.4 lens on the iPad.

It's capable of capturing video in 1080p Full HD, and Amazon's custom ‘origami' cover has a custom slide feature that allows the user quick access to the camera to shoot at a moment's notice.

Amazon has a (very) short video of the camera in action, which you can see here.

One of the unique new features is called ‘Mayday'. If you're having technical trouble, press the Mayday button in the Quick Settings menu and within fifteen seconds you'll be online with a technical support adviser via video chat

Don't worry if you're camera-shy: Amazon promises that ‘You can see the tech advisor, they can't see you'.

Amazon claims this service will be available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Whether they'll be able to keep up demand remains to be seen.

The Kindle Fire HDX range is currently only available on the US site, with UK details presumably to be announced soon. They're available in 16GB, 32GB and 64GB versions, and are attractively priced too, starting from $229 for the 7-inch model and $379 for the 8.9-inch version.