Kindle Fire HD & Kindle Fire

Unfortunately as quick as it came Christmas has pretty much been forgotten about and most of us are back at work but some of you may be returning with a nice bit of gadgetry in the form of a new Kindle Fire (a HD version if you’ve been real good this year), whether it’s for reading books on your commute to work, or watching some of your favourite movies via LoveFilm or Netflix (or video’s you’ve uploaded onto your Kindle Fire). If you’ve had the time to set it up you’re probably wondering what to do next?

Well you’ve come to the right place, you’re about to read a few things that you may or may not know about your Kindle Fire and what you can do once you’ve set up your device.

kindlefireHDFirst of all, if you’ve bought/been given the ad free one skip to the next paragraph, If you happen to find adverts on your lock screen, find the person who gave it to you, and throw a rock at them. I’m kidding, seriously – don’t throw a rock at them, thank them for giving you a Kindle Fire you ungrateful git. Right, now that’s over.. It’s been made quite unclear by both Amazon and some ‘resellers’ about the advert free version of the Kindle Fire. When you go to purchase a Kindle Fire from Amazon, they have the option to buy a Kindle Fire HD “With Special Offers” for £159, or if you’ve got a keen eye you’ll notice a “Without Special Offers” option. This option adds an extra £10 onto your Kindle Fire HD but hey, no adverts or “Special Offers” as they call them! Now, back to our original subject, if you find that you’ve got “Offers” on your lock screen then if you’re in the US you can just go to your account and disable offers (this does cost you $15) if you’re in the UK however, the option isn’t there so you have to contact Amazon’s Customer Service and ask for it to be removed.

If you’ve not got adverts on your lock screen then great! But you may or may not have “Customers Also Bought” underneath every app you’ve got on your Kindle Fire, not to worry this can be removed without any charge. First pull down the notification bar at the top, next tap on the plus labeled More… (on the right) Once the menu has opened, tap on Applications, then tap on Amazon Home Recommendations. Here you have the option to turn the recommendations on or off!

Next we’re onto books, you may have an extensive list of books you’re keen to get onto your Kindle Fire but before you go spending all of your cash on books, check out Amazon’s extensive list of free books (over 1,000) most of which are great classics like Les Misérables, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, and a whole host of Charles Dickens novels – something you probably never thought to pick up, but it’s free so why not give it a go?

Once you’ve activated your new Kindle Fire you’ll probably get an email letting you know that you’ve got a free trial of Amazon Prime! Amazon prime enables you to use the Amazon Lending library to borrow one book per month from the Amazon Kindle Store.

KindleFireFor those of you who are a little more tech savvy, you’ll be able to find a hell of a load of free e-books thanks to the power of Google, and trust me there’s a load of sites out there offering free e-books, some are more educational, others not so. Just be sure to download .MOBI versions as that’s the compatible file type that your Kindle Fire understands (.PDF are also recognised)

So you’ve hopefully got a bunch of new books on your Kindle Fire, but what about your favorite magazines such as Wired or the Official Android Magazine, both of which come with a 14 day free trial that gets sent directly to your Kindle Fire every month!

Books are great and all that, but this is a Kindle Fire we’ve got here, it’s practically a tablet right? Right! So lets get some apps!

The Amazon Appstore is a bit of a baby when it comes to being an app store being only available in the UK at the end of August this year. That doesn’t mean it’s not great, because it is! The Amazon Appstore includes a free app a day, every day, some are well known apps that usually cost a pretty packet (they recently had OfficeSuite Professional 6 available for free which usually costs around 10) and amongst the usual Facebook and Twitter apps it also offers some great utilities and games that take advantage of the large 7″ screen the Kindle Fire has to offer.

My Recommendations are:

Feedly – A pretty awesome feed reader.
Wapedia – This is my personal favorite Wikipedia app!
Calculator Plus – Everyone needs a giant calculator!
Wordpress (If you have a WordPress site) – This app is great for checking your WordPress site’s stats, writing posts and managing your blog.
Codeanywhere – If you’re a code monkey like me you’re going to want to have access to your websites code on the go. This Codeanywhere app is perfect for just that!
K-9 Mail – The stock email app is a bit pants and decided to not work after a few days, so if this happens to you, download K-9 Mail!

Robbery Bob – This game has taken hours from my life. Check out our review here.
Need For Speed Most Wanted – It’s pretty much the same as most other mobile racing games but it’s a great game and looks awesome on your Kindle Fire.
Triple Town – This turn based town creation game is a must have for your Kindle Fire, it utilizes the large screen perfectly and it’s ridiculously addictive.
Fruit Ninja – How can you not want to play Fruit Ninja on your Kindle Fire??

kinkfhdFor those of you a bit more tech savvy, I wrote a post a few days ago how you can get Google Apps such as GMail, Youtube, Currents, and Google Music on your Kindle Fire (without rooting or hacking your Kindle) and you can read that here.

Accessorize! The Kindle Fire is pretty compact and light weight so you’ll want to get yourself a good solid case to keep your Kindle safe, their are a bunch of Kindle Fire Accessories on Amazon from hybrid cases that double up as stands, sleeves, styluses, screen protectors, and chargers.

Well, I’m pretty much out of ideas on what you can do with your Kindle Fire, but if I come up with more I’ll add them onto here, so be sure to check back every so often!

Can you think of anything that I may have forgotten? Leave a comment below!

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