New Kindles will ship with an all new version of the Fire OS
Part of the giant release announcement Amazon made tonight about new Kindle Fires was a nice document about the new version 3 of the Fire OS, code named Mojito. Built atop Android 4.2.2, Mojto offers the same Android app compatibility as previous editions, but has hundreds of new features and low-level platform enhancements. While interested parties certainly should see the documentation for all the changes and information, we're going to take a look at a few highlights.
- Carousel and Grid — users can choose the layout of their home area, wth easy switching between the familiar carousel and a new gird mode.
- Cloud Collections — organize your applications, books, magazines and newspapers in the cloud. Amazon Whispersync synchronizes your catalog across any number of Kindle devices.
- 1-Tap Archive — free up space intelligently. The Fire OS can identify the things you haven't used recently and store them in your cloud with one tap to free up space.
- System-level social integration — Twitter and Facebook sharing done directly within the OS, including importation of your Facebook calendar and contacts.
- GameCircle and Whispersync for Games — developers can integrate game progress and profile syncing across devices using Amazon Web Services.
- X-Ray for movies, and TV and music — the updated X-Ray service now shows more information for movies and TV, and music lyrics have been added.
There's a laundry list of other enhancements and changes to look through, but we want to take a special look at one last one — The Mayday Button.
Available 24/7, 365 days a year, for free, The Mayday button is built into the settings and a tap will connect you with an "Amazon Expert" who will guide you through any of the new features by actually using your Kindle Fire with you. They will be able to draw on the screen, and through a live video chat session can get you headed in the right direction with any questions you might have. This is pretty revolutionary, and it shows that Amazon is serious about selling their new tablets.
The new Fire OS 3 is exclusive (for now at least) to the new Fire HD and HDX models, and the devices will be shipping with the software on-board. See the source links for more details.