Amazon will officially sell its Kindle Fire HD 8.9" and Kindle Fire HD tablets in Australia from next month, almost nine months since the devices officially went on sale in the US.
The company announced the Australian release on its Kindle Fire product page overnight. The Kindle Fire HD 8.9" and the smaller, 7in Kindle Fire HD are available to pre-order now but will begin shipping to Australian consumers on Thursday 13 June.
Both the Kindle Fire HD 8.9" and the Kindle Fire HD come in 16GB and 32GB variants, so there are a total of four models available in Australia. The 16GB Kindle Fire HD 8.9" sells for US$284 with the 32GB version costing US$319.
The smaller Kindle Fire HD will set you back US$214 for the 16GB model and US$244 for the larger 32GB model.
Amazon's product page for the Kindle Fire HD was updated to display the following statement for Australian users.
"We are excited to now ship Kindle Fire HD to Australia. Customers in Australia will enjoy:
Books in Under 60 Seconds: Think of a book and you could be reading it in under a minute
Growing Selection: Over 1,770,000 English-language books to choose from; plus U.S. and international newspapers and magazines are available for your country. Because publishers give us eBook rights on a country by country basis, available titles for your country will vary from our current U.S selection. We are actively working with publishers to get the rights to all titles for every country and adding this selection every day.
Low Book Prices: New York Times Best Sellers and New Releases are $11.99, unless marked otherwise. You'll also find many books for less - over 145,000 titles are priced under $5.99
The Kindle Fire HD 8.9" and the Fire HD have similar specifications. The smaller, 7in Fire HD has a 1280×800 resolution while the larger, 8.9in model has a resolution of 1920×1200.
Both models are powered by 1GB of RAM and have a dual-core processor, but the Fire HD 8.9's CPU clocks in a 1.5GHz compared to the Fire HD's 1.2GHz.
The Fire HD 8.9" is also slimmer at 8.8mm thick compared to the Fire HD's 10.3mm girth. It has a larger 6000mAh battery compared to 4000mAh in the smaller model. Neither model has a microSD card slot, so users will have to make do with the internal storage.
The Kindle Fire HD devices are Android tablets but the operating system has been heavily modified by Amazon. The tablets will provide access to the Amazon Appstore for Android, but not Google's Android Market or any other Google services like Google Search and Google Maps.
The Amazon Appstore offers a selection of Android apps for Kindle Fire owners including popular titles like Angry Birds, Pulse News Reader, LinkedIn and Fruit Ninja.
Yesterday, Amazon announced the expansion of the Appstore for Android to an additional 200 countries across the globe, including Australia.
The Appstore opened to US consumers in March 2011. It has also been available in the UK, Japan, China, Germany, France, Italy and Spain but was previously not accessible in Australia.