Amazon Fire HD 10 Plus (2021) review


not very similar

two minute review

For years now, Amazon Fire devices have been the go-to tablets for cheap, easy media consumption – iPads are good but expensive, very few decent Android tablets exist (the Galaxy Tab S series being the main exception), and it’s the rest of Amazon. To take a bigger share of the market with its affordable, unaffordable, low-spec slate.

But what do we have here? 4GB RAM? Storage up to 64GB? An extra ‘plus’ at the end of the name? wireless charging? A bundled option including Microsoft Office and a Bluetooth keyboard? Yes, the Amazon Fire series is clearly growing and getting serious – the newly introduced 10.1-inch Plus model will make you want to do more than just browse the web and watch movies on Amazon Prime.

Those extras are welcome, but they don’t really move the needle that much. Even though the Amazon Fire HD 10 Plus is the best of the series yet, it’s still going to appeal to most viewers like never before — those who want a cheap, reliable tablet to do some social media checking, some online reading, and more. . Music and video streaming.

If you’re the kind of person who slaps a keyboard on your tablet and fires up Microsoft Excel, the improvements that the Fire HD 10 Plus brings aren’t really going to put you off options.

On the positive side, it’s a well-built tablet, with a decent display and perfectly adequate battery life. Alexa can’t be blamed, and you get easy access to all of Amazon’s apps and services — photos, music, movies, ebooks, audiobooks, and everything else (the software also works with being able to remember that Where are you in your various bits of content). It’s not all that fast, but it’s not needed.

As for the negatives: Well, it looks like a cheap tablet, overall. The Fire OS software is based on Android, but it lacks a few key apps, including all of Google (and YouTube, unless you want to visit YouTube in a web browser)—if you’re heavily invested in the Google ecosystem. So you might be better off looking elsewhere.

It’s still super-cheap though, starting at just $179.99 in the US and £179.99 in the UK. And that’s exactly what every gadget review goes for: value for money. The Amazon Fire HD 10 Plus offers a lot of it, and assuming you’re aware of it and can live with its limitations, we’re happy to recommend it.

Amazon Fire HD 10 Plus Price and Availability

  • Out now in US and UK
  • Starts at $179.99 / £179.99 (about AU$330)

Amazon Fire tablets are very affordable. For the 32GB storage model, this slate will set you back $179.99 / £179.99 (about AU$330), and it goes up to $219.99 / £219.99 (about AU$400) for the 64GB model. Those prices include lock screen ads – if you don’t want them, add another $10/£10. Of course you can buy these tablets directly from Amazon.

At the time of writing it’s another $40/£40 if you want the official wireless charging dock with your purchase, while a Bluetooth keyboard and a year of Microsoft 365 is another $60/£60. Slate is currently not available in Australia.

design

  • Plastic back and large bezels
  • Feels light enough for extended use
  • only comes in one color

There’s no real surprise in the design of the Amazon Fire HD 10 Plus, with the familiar cheap and cheerful aesthetics of this tablet series again in evidence.

In terms of design, there’s no difference between the Plus model and the standard Amazon Fire HD 10 (2021) tablet – both are lighter and thinner than the Amazon Fire HD 10 (2019), but with a 0.6 millimeter (0.02 in) cut. With and 36 grams (1.3 oz) respectively, you’ll hardly notice.

Despite the display bezels for a device launching in 2021, the tablet isn’t bad-looking hardware, with nicely curved edges and corners that add to the slate’s visual appeal as well as give it a breeze. Toughness (this is one gadget you don’t think you have to treat with special care).

The tablet has a nice sleek plastic backing, with a subtly embossed Amazon logo, and a grey-ish shade that Amazon calls the Slate, your only color option. It’s actually exclusive to the Plus model—the standard Amazon Fire HD 10 comes in Black, Denim, Olive, and Lavender—so if you like it, you’ll have to pay extra for the more expensive model.

If you hold the tablet in landscape orientation (so it’s wide instead of tall), with the webcam embedded above the screen, all action happens on the right: You’ve got the volume controls at the top, then the power button, then USB-C. port, and then the headphone jack.

It feels a little crowded on that side of the device, and it’s not a great position when the Fire HD 10 Plus is in portrait mode, but we can live with that.

The tablet feels light enough for extended use with one hand, though it’s surprising how much more compact it would be without those thick bezels.

Still, on a device this cheap money has to be saved somewhere, and overall the Amazon Fire HD 10 Plus looks more elegant and premium than you might expect considering its price. It’s certainly no iPad in the design department, but then it costs quite a bit.

performance and audio

  • 10.1 Inch, 1920 x 1200 LCD Display
  • Fair quality but no HDR
  • good stereo speakers

We haven’t got any complaints about the 10.1-inch, 1920 x 1200 resolution, LCD screen on the Amazon Fire HD 10 Plus — though this is probably one of the areas where you can see Amazon selling these devices to rival slates from Apple. How does it get cheaper than and Samsung. It’s a good screen but it’s not with the very best.

For the size of the tablet, the resolution is high enough to get a nice and sharp picture, and the brightness rises to a respectable level too. There’s no HDR here, so some detail can be lost, especially in dark and light areas of the frame when watching video, but that’s not a big problem.

Even without the quality and richness of HDR and OLED screens, it’s a great tablet for enjoying movies and TV shows: despite the power user extras that Amazon has added for the Plus model, you get the feeling that it’s still there. Also first and foremost. for media consumption, and the 10.1-inch screen gives you plenty of room for it.

It’s also fine for document reading and web browsing, and for reading digital books in a pinch—though of course it’s not as easy on the eyes as an ereader (like Amazon makes itself). On the audio side, you can actually choose from quite impressive stereo speakers, a 3.5mm headphone jack or Bluetooth speaker, and there’s support for Dolby Atmos.

Glasses, Display and Cameras

  • Dated but acceptable chipset
  • basic cameras
  • There is no Google Play Store so app selection is limited

In terms of specs, there’s no trouble with storage – 32GB or 64GB, or more if you add a microSD card – and 4GB of RAM is enough for a device like this, but it’s a shame to see the same MediaTek Helio P60T chipset here. . Which was fitted inside the 2019 model. While we didn’t notice any major lag or glitches, it’s hardly the fastest tablet we’ve ever seen in terms of responsiveness.

Yes, you’ll be able to do everything you want to do on the Amazon Fire HD 10 Plus, but you might end up waiting a few more milliseconds for some tasks to complete than you’d like.

Serious image and video editing and high-end mobile gaming aren’t really on the table, but users with such demands are likely to have their eye on more expensive tablets anyway.

Camera duties are handled by a 2MP front-facing camera and a 5MP rear-facing camera, and they are functional but not much more than that. If you really have to move around taking pictures with your tablet, prepare to be overwhelmed—we’d say the Fire HD 10 Plus cameras are just as pliable for video calling, but no more, and Still images come out as noisy and blocked

Software is a bit of a mixed bag. Alexa is definitely on board, and we like the way it can turn a tablet into an Echo Show if need be — Amazon’s digital assistant is better all the time, and needs no introduction. All of Amazon’s apps and services, including Prime Video, are readily available and work very well.

On the downside, the Fire OS version of Android that Amazon developed and carries on its tablet doesn’t have Google Play Store access, so all your favorite apps won’t be available.

Spotify and Tidal are here, but not Deezer or Apple Music; Netflix and Disney Plus are available, but there’s no native YouTube app (you’ll need to open the mobile version of YouTube on the web instead). Zoom is here, but not Slack.

There really are no Google apps – no Gmail, no Google Maps, no Google Photos. Depending on what you want out of your tablet, these omissions may not be deal-breakers, but make sure you’re aware of them before buying one.

As they always have been, these devices are the best for accessing Amazon apps and services, with a few extras (like Microsoft Office) thrown on top.

Luggage

  • A wireless dock lets you turn it into an Echo Show
  • Bluetooth Keyboard and Microsoft 365 Bundle is Good Value

We have already mentioned some of the accessories available for Amazon Fire HD 10 Plus above. The official Amazon Wireless Charging Dock, for an additional $40/£40, has an interesting proposition: It’s good for charging your tablet and using it like the Echo Show that you stow in the corner of the room.

It doubles as a stand, so it can also come in handy for watching movies and writing essays.

We think $60 / £60 for a Bluetooth keyboard and a year of Microsoft 365 is really great (Microsoft 365 usually costs $69.99 or £59.99 a year). We can’t confirm the quality of the keyboard, but it looks pretty solid and stylish.

battery life

  • long lasting battery
  • slow to charge

The advantage of a modestly performing processor and a low-resolution screen is the better battery…

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