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Apple to Amazon: bring on the Kindle Fire

Apple's senior management welcomes the Kindle Fire, believing it'll further fragment the Android operating system.

Apple isn't worried by Amazon's cut-price Kindle Fire tablet -- at least that's if you believe what CEO Tim Cook and CFO Peter Oppenheimer told Barclays analyst Ben Reitzes, reports Business Insider.

This is because the Fire will introduce another level of fragmentation within Android, due to it being skinned and customised by Amazon till it looks like another operating system altogether. The Apple execs believe this will drive people to the 'more stable' iPad. Saucer of milk to Cupertino, this looks like a good old-fashioned cat fight.

The Kindle Fire "represents yet another platform" according to the Apple execs, so means further fragmentation for Android. "While compatible with Android, the apps work with Amazon products," notes Reitzes. "The more fragmentation, the better, says Apple, since that could drive more consumers to the stable Apple platform. We believe that Apple will get more aggressive on price with the iPad eventually but not compromise the product quality and experience."

In other words: bring it.

The Kindle Fire runs Android but looks completely different to the OS on other tablets. Android apps will initially look out of place on it, but Amazon hopes sales will be significant enough to encourage developers to make custom apps for it.

The Fire was announced in September but as yet there's no word on a UK release, which is a bit annoying. It'll cost just $199 (about £130), with no camera, no microphone, and no 3G. Apps will be available through Amazon's own Appstore.

Is Apple right to be so dismissive of the Fire, or is it all talk? It is much cheaper than the iPad, but is that enough to tempt you? Let us know below or on our Facebook page.