Amazon Kindle Fire could be UK-bound amid Appstore rumours

Amazon's Appstore for Android is heading for Europe, reports say -- could the Amazon Kindle Fire be far behind?

Amazon's Appstore for Android is heading for Europe, reports say -- could the Amazon Kindle Fire be far behind?

Amazon's 7-inch multimedia Kindle Fire tablet is only available in the United States, just like you can only download apps from the Amazon Appstore in the US. But AllThingsD reports that the AppStore will open its doors in Europe this summer, with the online retail giant expected to invite app developers aboard next week.

The Appstore has been open for just over a year as a rival to Google Play, the official Android app market. The Kindle Fire launched last year and sales caught fire instantly, selling millions . But sales are now in decline, so it seems a good time for the Fire to spread to Europe and the UK.

The hold-up is that the Fire is so focused on movies, music and other media that it relies on deals with makers of those types of content. The licensing of content is different in different countries, so striking new deals is insanely complicated, holding up content-focused technology and services from crossing the pond.

Even accounting for those delays, Amazon seems slow to bring its kit to Britain. The original Kindle ebook reader took over a year to reach these shores.

Rumours of a UK launch for the Fire have been gathering pace lately, with the  bookseller-turned-everything-seller recently telling industry types " If you're not talking to us, you should be ". But even if the Kindle Fire doesn't turn up, the opening of a new Android app store should encourage Google to continue to improve its own app shop.

Other Kindle Fire speculation that won't go away include whisperings of a 10-inch model to directly rival the iPad.

Do you think the Kindle Fire is finally heading to Britain -- and would you buy one? Will the Amazon Appstore increase competition or just make things more complicated for consumers and developers? Tell me your thoughts in the comments or on our Facebook page.

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About the author

Rich Trenholm is a senior editor at CNET where he covers everything from phones to bionic implants. Based in London since 2007, he has travelled the world seeking out the latest and best consumer technology for your enjoyment.

 

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