Press wades into Amazon tablet

Amazon’s new $199 tablet computer has received a tepid reception from reviewers in the Press, especially among the corners that usually blindingly bleat about Apple.

Admittedly, one of the reviewers was David Pogue of the New York Times, which we see as Cupertino’s unpaid press office.

Pogue pointed out that it was far behind the glorious Apple tablet because it had no camera on the back, no GPS navigation, and no speech recognition, and was thicker, smaller and slower. Of course, it was half the price too, but that accounts for nothing.

Walt Mossberg of the Wall Street Journal said the 7-inch Kindle Fire HD is not as “polished, fluid or versatile” as the iPad. After prolonged use, some apps and content took longer to launch and web pages loaded more slowly through the new wi-fi technology.

But again he was comparing it to the iPad, which is in a different price bracket and has a different use.

Mossberg muttered that adverts “assault” users every time they start the device or resume using it. Adverts were a way for Amazon to keep the price down and the company said this weekend that customers can turn ads off for $15.

Consumer Reports, which is a little saner when it comes to non-Apple products, highlighted the limited apps available for the device.

It liked the 16 GB storage but said it was annoying that that the tablet ships without a charger.

Reuters insisted that the lukewarm reviews could put off some potential buyers, but low prices for the new Kindle tablets will likely ensure solid sales. In other words, they are cheap enough for people to buy.

R.J. Hottovy, an equity analyst at Morningstar, pointed out that the original Kindle Fire had similar tepid reviews, curiously from the same pro-Apple newspapers, and it sold very well. Maybe people are starting to ignore reviews from partisan publications and their editorial teams might worry about their credibility in accepting such reviews for publication in the future.