I realize I”m a little late to the party in talking about the Kindle Fire. But I thought I’d briefly add my two cents. On first glance of the new 7 inch color tablet from Amazon, I’d say it’s very much like the Nook Color…only crippled. Yes, clearly the Fire has a much more powerful dual-core processor compared to the single-core processor found in the NC. Additionally, the Fire runs Android 2.3 Gingerbread right out of the box while the Nook is still running Froyo 2.2.
But that gap significantly narrows when you install CyanogenMod on the Nook Color to take complete control of your Nook Color. Once that is done, you are running a fully functional version of Gingerbread. Also, you can over-clock the single core processor to 1300 MHz. That makes for a pretty snappy little tablet.
The other major advantage the Nook Color has over the Kindle Fire is expansion. On the NC, you have a MicroSD slot for added storage in addition to the 8GB internal storage. And more importantly, a very easy way to load alternate operating systems. Without this expansion slot, adding alternate ROMs becomes much more complicated.
Rumors have been going around that the Fire hardware was rushed to meet the holiday demand. In addition, a version 2 of the Fire may be released as early as Q1 of 2012. This may indeed be the real Kindle color tablet that many have been waiting for. Alternatively, B&N is rumored to have a replacement for their Nook Color model sometime in the next few weeks. If it still has the MicroSD slot, I would recommend you buy the Nook over the Fire if you are into tinkering with the Operating System…even if it sets you back an extra $50.