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亚马逊Kindle Fire:是新星还是流星?

JP Mangalindan 2011年11月16日

亚马逊备受期待的平板电脑终于闪亮登场了。它并不完全符合大家的预期,但这依然称得上是亚马逊有史以来最重要的产品。

    这种创意并不新鲜,但亚马逊似乎将其性能提高了一个新的档次。在实际操作中,基于网站上Flash的多寡(Flash越多,载入时间越长),页面载入得相对还要快些。由于iPad 2上的苹果移动iOS操作系统不支持Flash,因此很难将Fire这方面的应用性能与在iPad 2上的相应应用直接进行对比。但是,我做了一个完全谈不上科学的实验来一探究竟:把这两台平板电脑并排放在一起,随后同时打开同一个不带Flash的网站。结果,Silk载入某些页面的速度要稍快些,不过这种差别可谓微不足道。

    换言之,其他性能领先的平板电脑能做的,Kindle Fire几乎样样精通。并且它还有一些它们所没有的绝活:每位Fire的新用户都能获得一个月免费的亚马逊尊享礼包,体验一下公司所提供的各种服务。礼包包括:为期两天的货运服务,免费的流媒体电影,以及试用最近推出的Kindle用户借阅图书馆服务。借阅服务允许用户每次借一本书,每个月借阅一次。

    Fire比此前任何一款Kindle都要更进一步,它是亚马逊独有的生态系统的接入装置,这个系统中亚马逊提供的服务几乎应有尽有。这个接入装置常常会不那么含蓄,而总是开门见山。比如,当用户要买一本电子书时,亚马逊就会提醒你,这本书你是否可以借阅。如果你喜欢某个视频,公司又会提示, “尊享会员可以完全免费观看”尊享即时视频,但对其他人来说,就需要按需点播了。没有尊享会员身份,也能用Fire。但是这种信息的含义是毫不含糊的:如果你不是会员,就错失了大好机会。

    Kindle Fire拥有亚马逊广受欢迎的各项服务,同时通过性能可靠的硬件呈现在用户面前。它的界面响应迅速、易于上手。它没有iPad那种精致靓丽的感觉,但是凭借亚马逊的品牌、亚马逊手中多元服务所构成的庞大生态系统,再加上199美元的价位,它其实也并不需要这种感觉。在这个意义上,苹果的平板电脑算是第一次真正棋逢对手。

    译者:清远

    The idea itself isn't new, but Amazon seems to have taken it up a notch. In practice, pages loaded relatively quickly depending on how much Flash a site features. (The more Flash on the site, the longer the load time.) It's hard to draw a direct comparison to say, usage on the iPad 2 since Apple's mobile iOS operating system doesn't support Flash, but in a completely unscientific experiment, I put the two tablets side-by-side and loaded the same Flash-free sites on both simultaneously. Silk loaded some pages a hair quicker, but the difference was negligible.

    In other words, the Kindle Fire does nearly everything other leading tablets do. It also has something they don't. Each new Fire owner receives one free month of Amazon Prime, a taste of the company's service which offers two-day shipping, free movie streaming and access to the recently-introduced Kindle Owners Lending Library that lets users borrow one book at a time, once a month.

    More than any other Kindle before it, the Fire is an initiation into an ecosystem where nearly every service is provided by Amazon. Often a not-so-subtle initiation. When you're shopping for an e-book, Amazon notes if the title is available to be lent to you. If you're jonesing for a video, the company points out that its Prime Instant Videos are "$0.00 for Prime members," while they're a la carte for everyone else. The Fire can be used without a Prime membership. But the message is clear: you're missing out if you're not a member.

    The Kindle Fire takes Amazon's wildly popular services and presents them in a solid piece of hardware with a responsive, easy-to-understand interface that works. It doesn't have the iPad's extra layer of polish and sheen, but with the Amazon brand, a wide ecosystem of services at its disposal, and that $199 price point, it doesn't really need it. In that sense, Apple's tablet just met its first real competitor.

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