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Tablets

Amazon set to launch two 7-inch Kindle Fires this week

Amazon won't go large with a model to rival the iPad, sources claim.

We were expecting two new Kindle Fire tablets to launch at Amazon's press event on 6 September, one 7-inch and a larger one to take on the iPad. But now word reaches us that both will be 7-inchers.

Our colleagues at CNET News report Amazon will reveal a new 7-inch Kindle Fire alongside a slightly revamped version of the original, according to someone who's seen both products.

The new Fire will feature a faster processor, a camera (conspicuous by its absence on the original), physical volume controls and an HDMI port. It'll also have more storage, but still won't be expandable.

The rejigged version of the current Kindle Fire, meanwhile, will have a new user interface. Presumably the price will come down as well, to be more in line with Google's super-cheap Nexus 7, though there's no word on that yet.

Amazon also has an ad-supported tablet in the works that'll cost less than its standard Fire, according to the Wall Street Journal. Details are scant, but apparently it'll show an advert every time you wake the device, which could be extremely annoying, depending on what kind of advert it is. (If it's Go Compare or those sodding meerkats, I'm saying we all boycott it.)

The Kindle Fire was listed as "sold out" on Amazon's US site this week, conveniently about a year since it launched. Hmm. Both models of its Kindle Touch were also sold out, hinting we could see some new e-readers at Thursday's event, too. Here's hoping they make it to our shores, and Amazon doesn't keep us in the dark, as it has so far with the Kindle Fire.

The Kindle Fire was touted as the most affordable decent Android tablet around, until Google knocked it off its top spot. Can Amazon reclaim its crown? And would you want an ad-supported tablet? Let me know below, or on our Facebook page.