Whether I’m working from home or watching an unhealthy amount of New Girl, I rely on my laptop for everything. Because I’m so attached to my beloved laptop, I never thought about buying a tablet (I honestly believed it was a waste of money). How can a small screen compare to my daily computer? I thought. Well, I was wrong (which as an Aries is hard for me to admit). I had the chance to test out the new Amazon Fire HD 10 and I may understand the hype behind it.
First, let’s get technical (technical)...
I’ll be the first to admit specs are not always at the top of my list, but when you begin to compare the Amazon Fire HD 10 to older models, you see the differences almost immediately. The minute I turned on the tablet, I was surprised by the high resolution (like, it shines brighter than the sun). See, with a 1080p HD display, be prepared for crystal clear images and videos. It’s ten percent brighter and has two million pixels more than the older generations of Fire tablets.
But picture quality aside, the tablet’s star feature is its weight and size. At just 16.4 oz (1 pound) and 10.1 inches, it’s pretty light and thin. I don’t have to worry about it weighing down my bag or feeling too bulky in my hand. Again, I love my laptop. But if I’m on-the-go, I’m reaching for the Fire 10 instead. I don’t want it to feel like a hassle (or an unwanted workout) when I’m traveling.
And the speed? I can’t give all the credit to my WiFi connection. The tablet has 50 percent more RAM (3GB worth than older models), which means moving from app to app is smooth and quick—no buffering or frozen screens allowed.
Now, if you’re WFH…
The tablet promises three things: to keep you entertained, connected and productive. Out of the three, productivity is a big one for me. How was this tablet going to level up to my day-to-day responsibilities?
Enter the split screen feature. I’m constantly trying to do a makeshift split screen on my laptop and it just looks wonky. The Fire 10 does all the work for me with a good ol keyboard shortcut (Fn + S). I can look at my emails and scroll through the Internet. I can video chat and keep tabs open to take notes at the same time. My multitasking can be cleaner and more organized. However, this feature doesn’t work on every application. It’s great for Zoom, Messenger by Facebook and Microsoft Office, but anytime I tried a random app, it gave me a message basically saying app does not support split screen. Hopefully, they’ll continue to develop the Fire 10 so that it’ll give me the option no matter what app I’m using.
Another pro I really enjoyed for WFH purposes was Alexa. The voice command is always ready to answer my questions quickly and efficiently. I’m able to ask about the weather, news, to open apps, etc. with a simple “Hey Alexa” to my tablet. The Alexa is also super…nice? The second I asked for the time, it said “It’s 3:27pm, hope you have a nice Monday.” Sorry, other virtual assistants need to step their sweet game up.
Or just want to relax in bed...
All my favorite apps are just a click away. The 10-inch screen makes it great for watching movies, reading or scrolling through IG in bed. Plus, the built-in speakers provide good sound quality. There’s also an option on the tablet to plug in headphones or add speakers for a surround sound watching experience.
OK, but what’s the difference between this one and the old models?
Whether you have the older generations (like the Fire 7 or 8), and are thinking to yourself why should I even upgrade?, here are even more features to consider when adding this new item to the cart:
It has a longer battery life. It’s good for up to 12 hours, so you can stop worrying about shutting it off and charging it every single day. For reference, the Fire 7 had only seven hours of battery life and its biggest competitors (aka the newest iPads) only have up to ten hours.
It has a camera upgrade. While all the models have 2mp front and rear camera, the Fire 10 has an upgrade with 5mp, so you can take all the photos you desire. Now, the quality is not the best (like their competitor’s 12 mp) but it’ll still get the job done during video calls.
The size is drastically different. As mentioned before, the Fire 10 is 10.1 inches. The older models were two to three inches smaller.
But wait, there’s more...
The icing on the cake for me has been the productivity bundle that Amazon is offering with the new Fire 10. Aside from the tablet, I got a Finite detachable keyboard case and 12-year subscription to Microsoft 365. Amazon really said you’re getting productivity with a capital P.
Now, the keyboard is everything. It turns my tablet into a mini computer so that I can truly work on-the-go, and it’s easy to detach if I just want the Fire 10 (thanks to the magnetic structure). I also get added protection, a snazzy stand so I don’t have to hold it all the time and 400 (yes, 400) hours per charge.
One thing I don’t like is that the keyboard makes the tablet heavier to hold (even heavier than my Macbook). So I might not take the keyboard everywhere I go, but it’s still a great addition to have. Also, while a touchscreen option is great (since I can’t do that with a laptop), I wish the bundle came with a mouse or pen to make it easier to transition from typing to navigating the screen.
The Bottom Line
Now, I won’t fully get rid of my computer, but I’m glad I found a smaller option for whenever I’m on-the-go, in bed or looking to move around without juggling my laptop in my hands. It checks off all the boxes of entertaining me, connecting me and making me a little more productive. Plus, the bundle definitely sweetened the deal.
The tablet alone costs $150 (which is four times cheaper than its competitors) and with the bundle it comes to $220 (which is 18 percent off right now). The Fire 10 also comes in four colors: black, denim, lavender and olive. I don’t know about you, but I’m officially a tablet convert.
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