I'm a Fire tablet fan, have been for many years. I started off with a Fire 7 and I loved it, it was useful and more practical than the Apple iPads I'd owned and the various Android tablets I'd had. I really adored it and only parted with it to get the Fire 8HD, but I didn't think it was as good as the Fire 7, the battery life wasn't as good. Eventually I bought the Fire 10HD and had that until recently, the battery was started to fail and it was a good time to sell it with the new Fire 7 and it's new OS coming out. So I finally ordered mine this week.
The first thing I noticed was half of my apps - ones I really rely on like Aldiko Pro for reading ePubs, was not showing up, many apps and games I'd run on my Fire 7, 8 and 10 just fine. Ok, new OS I thought, but I'm running those apps on my (de-Googled) phone under Android 9 just fine. So why are these apps being hidden for my tablet? It's more than capable of running them.
Then I noticed Amazon Cloud Drive is not available. I can access my cloud files via Docs but it's clunky way of doing things. I also went to my computer browser, I do to Cloud Drive and I'm being redirected to Amazon Photos, no mention of file storage now - just photos and videos - WTF? Have Amazon downgraded their cloud service and depricated the Cloud Drive app? I have it on my phone and it works ok. So I don't know what''s going on there and I can't find anything anywhere about that.
Back to the Docs app, one of the neat little hidden gems in the Fire OS has been it's office suite - I've been using it ever since I began with my original Fire 7 and I rely on it. On the 2019 Fire 7 it is buggy. The top of the office apps render -under- the OS status bar (clock etc), so the app close and menu buttons can't be pressed properly - when I do manage to tap them, the office suite crashes immediately and wants to sent a bug report (and I do send it). It's like nobody even bothered to beta test this prior to release.
The apps I do have are slower than my old Fire 7, painfully slow. I'm often just looking at a white screen instead of the app. Games which played on my old Fire 7 struggle on this device, stuttering and freezing or just aborting completely. Considering this is a quad core A53 instead of the A7 in my old Fire 7, I'd expect the performance to be the same, if not better, not worse.
The battery in my old Fire 7 would only need charging at night - and I'd use it extensively throughout the day, this device doesn't make it through the day. I have to recharge it if I want to use it in the evening.
Ok, I don't expect this to run like a supercomputer, but I do expect it to be equivalent or slightly better to the Fire 7 I bought almost 4 years ago - which I gave to a friend some time ago but is still working flawlessly. I'm a little disappointed and I hate to say that because I really do tell everyone I can how good Amazon tablets are, but.....
...anyone else having similar problems? Or found any good solutions/workarounds?
PS. Found that after a reboot, most apps I'd organised into folders were outside the folders again.
PPS. The wallpaper keeps reverting to default intermittently.
I found a good solution was to return mine for a full refund. I found the device unacceptable. The only "plus" point was I liked the Sage colour.
In my humble opinion something has seriously gone wrong somewhere in the Fire development team. This latest Fire 7 is beyond rubbish. I hope that many, many customers return theirs for credit and Amazon learn that they can not fool all of the people all of the time.
I'm not sure I'd want to do that because I do like Amazon tablets, but if they saw customers turning away, they'd probably be more inclined to cease producing them rather than fixing them. The hardware is enough to run an Android 7 level OS, I suspect the problems are software related, maybe even the battery management. This could probably all be fixed with an update, but the tablet has been out for a while now and surely problems should have been addressed by now?
I'm not keen to send it back, after my original Fire 7 being so good, the Fire 8HD wasn't as good and even the Fire 10, although with a big screen, wasn't worth the £149 I paid by comparison. If I got rid of it, what would I use? I don't want Apple or Google.
An update, incase anyone reads this and is having problems with their Fire 7.
I contacted an Amazon 'representative' for what little use it did, he seemed to be reading from a script and stuck in a loop. He did suggest I get a refund but I didn't want to do that, I wanted a solution and I think I've found -part- of the problem.
When I setup my new Fire 7, I'd installed my old 64GB MicroSD card, which it was going to format one way or another (meaning I'd have to copy all the media I had on it back over), it gave me two options - to use it as internal storage or as portable storage, this is a part of the new Fire OS 6. I'd not really given it much thought and just hit internal storage and continued setting the device up. (Then discovered the various problems I listed in my original post). I remembered I had an Android Nougat device a few years back that gave me the same option and I'd set it to internal, and that caused a whole heap of problems too. Basically the Fire 7 was using the MicroSD as it's main storage device for apps etc. but the problem is MicroSD cards are often much slower than the internal flash memory such as in Fire tablets. So it was creating a bottleneck and apps and the system overall was slow
So I did a factory reset and this time I set the MicroSD card as portable storage, I don't need apps installed onto it since I opted for the 32GB Fire 7. I reinstalled all my apps as before and media - wow, what a difference. The whole tablet is faster, apps are snappy, games like Asphalt 8 are fluid instead of stuttering. After a reboot, apps which I'd put into folders were still there! The wallpaper wasn't reset to default. Lots of problems were fixed. I'm still not happy that some apps I really want from my app library are not showing up, maybe I should ask the developers to get their fingers out and mark their apps as Fire 7 & Fire OS 6 compatible. The built-in (WPS) office suite still needs an update - the bug reports I submitted bounced back as undelivered. Battery life is still not fantastic, but other problems seem to be improved. With some updates to the software, this will be a great little tablet.
TL;DR: So the moral of the story is NOT to use a MicroSD card as 'internal' storage unless you really, really have to - and then have a very fast card or the system will run slow and apps will run like a pig.
Not a problem, if my experience helps someone get more from their device and prevents them as writing it off as sub-par, then I'll be happy.
I do need to submit a formal bug report for the built-in office suite, but I can't find a way to do it, Customer services seem clueless and the device feedback feature on the device probably is never read. I did use the crash reporter in the office suite, but they were bounced back from WPS/Kingsoft in China.
Do you know how to submit bug reports to the Fire OS system developers?