I think Google has a real winner here : the specs are great, Asus is a known for reliable products and the pricing is agressively competitive. The only negative aspect I see is the lack of 3G/4G. It's not that big of a deal for me, because I can just tether it to my Galaxy Nexus (or so I hope), but it might be a deal-breaker for people looking for a do-it-all tablet.
The front camera and mic makes it instantly better than the Kindle. The CPU also makes it faster. Until Amazon comes up with the next gen Kindle, The Nexus 7 is way better.
Also, you have to consider that you can use Amazon services (MP3, Books, Movies) from an open Android platform (Nexus 7), whereas you cannot use other services (Google Play, Barns & Noble ) from the Kindle. So you preserve more freedom to choose if you get the Nexus 7.
The Kindle would have to drop to $99 to make that provider lock-in reasonable. However, for many people freedom is priceless.
This looks really good but has room for improvement. like lack of SD expansion for one. Anyway, the ball is now in Amazon's court. Can't wait to see what they have in store for the next kindle fire. Let the competition of the $200 7 inchers begin!
Nexus 7 is an example of a strip down tablet where the essential has stayed while the lesser use feature has been taken away: the tablet has the latest quad-core chip running at 1.3Ghz, good IPS screen at 1280x800, and battery life. They take away the back camera, 3G connectivity, microSD, no USB (the microUSB slot should be for charging only).
Taking away those features, are partly to lower the cost, also partly to ensure current tablets from their partners still have a reason to exist in the market. But at this price, it really does change the market and force Amazon to include better hardware in Kindle and Apple to lower their prices and come out with a 7" equivalent. It will also put incredible pressure on the future Windows 8 tablet sales.
[citation][nom]southernshark[/nom]Does it have a slot for an SD card? That would make it awesome.[/citation]
Read the comments before posting. It was mentioned in about 7 different comments that there's no SD card slot. Sure seems like a blatant push towards having to use their cloud storage if you need more space. Price is great but why they're giving it the same constraint that makes the iPad so unappealing to me is an insult to us local data loving users. Clouds are for rain and shade but not my files thank you!