For its rumored upcoming Kindle Fire refresh, expected next week, Amazon will add maps functionality but it won't go with Google's popular offering, sources told Reuters' Alistair Barr. Unlike Apple, who earlier this year ditched Google Maps, which it has up until now used in all of its iOSes, Amazon isn't building its own competitor, instead going with a Nokia Oyj creation. We don't get many details about what special doo-dads the maps will have. (Probably something 3D, since that seems to be the rage with competitors Google and Apple.) But, this new addition will add location based capabilities to the tablet, say Reuters' sources, so we will get all that fun stuff that comes with satellites knowing our whereabouts. (Also all the creepy things about it, too.)
As these companies become ever more competitive they don't want to pay each other for services. That's why Apple up and designed its own maps situation. And since the Kindle Fire with its $200 price tag is a direct competitor with Google's $200 Nexus 7, it makes sense that Amazon wouldn't want to support its enemy, especially when that nemesis got better reviews for its tablet. Plus, as we've seen with the Samsung-Apple trial, when enemies make nice in exchange for services things can get ugly when they decide to sue each other later. Samsung provides Apple with some its parts, while the two are embroiled in a major cat fight. (Just today, by the way, Apple lost to Samsung in Japan, so now they owe them money. The war wages on!)
None of this is confirmed for sure, though. Since Amazon sent out an invitation to a somewhat mysterious media gathering next week, the Kindle Fire rumors have heated up. The Amazon rumor mill gets press attention about as well as Apple's, but the company doesn't seem to care as much about secrecy as Apple does, so we have a pretty good idea of what we'll get next week. The Verge says it has a photo of one of the new devices we will see next week, though it might be a prototype. The Verge also has another post with what it thinks we will see next week: A Paperwhite backlit display Kindle Touch update, which as many commenters have noted looks a lot like a Kindle. And, likely, we will see new maps, too.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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