A few weeks ago we posted our First Look review of the Kindle Fire. In it we explained that despite some obvious UI and design flaws, we still found the Fire to be a useful addition to our computing toolbox.
A few days after we released our review, usability guru Jacob Nielsen released a scathing review. His conclusion - Amazon's Kindle Fire offers a disappointingly poor user experience. This caused a bit of stir on the Internet as Kindle supporters and naysayers duked it out.
I read Nielsen's review and found it accurate. As we pointed out in our First Look, the UI and overall design are flawed. I've experienced most of the problems Nielsen identifies - especially accidental activation.
I also follow his advice to use mobile sites whenever possible. These make the Kindle user experience much, much better. I also think it makes the mobile experience much better than my iPhone.
But despite all the issues with the Kindle, my usage continues to increase. It's now my preferred electronic way to read magazines, books and newspapers (I really like the Fire version of the Wall Street Journal). And it continues to grow on me as a mobile device.
As I said in my First Look review, I've been surprised how much I like the 7" form factor. I thought it would be too small to be useful, but I really prefer it to using my iPhone for mobile computing. It may be my age (and/or the age of my eyes), but my iPhone is simply too small for me.
So despite the flaws, my Kindle Fire will continues to be a productive addition to my computing family.
For those considering the Fire, I suggest playing with one prior to buying. Make sure you try it using standard websites as well as mobile websites. The usability flaws are real, so if you can't easily adjust to them - or the 7 inch form factor - you should consider other options.