updated 08:12 pm EDT, Thu August 30, 2012
Next Kindle Fire to feature native mapping services
When Amazon announces the next version of its Kindle Fire tablet next Thursday, the device will feature mapping services provided by Nokia. Sources familiar with Amazon's plans tell Reuters that the web retail giant will shun Google for Nokia, even though the current generation Kindle Fire runs on a forked version of Google's Android operating system. Those sources have also confirmed that next Thursday's Amazon event will indeed introduce at least one new Kindle Fire model, though a multi-unit unveiling remains a possibility.
The next Kindle Fire will reportedly feature location services, which will likely be accomplished either through a GPS chip or a process known as Wi-Fi triangulation.
Amazon's decision to go with Nokia over Google comes on the heels of a similar announcement from Apple revealing that the iPhone maker would be going with its own mapping solution in the newest version of its iOS platform. Amazon recently purchased a 3D mapping startup itself in UpNext, but there likely hasn't been enough time for the retailer to integrate UpNext into its operations, as that acquisition only occurred in July.
Amazon also halted sales of the first-generation Kindle Fire earlier today, stating that the company had "sold out" of the 7-inch tablet. It is unclear whether Amazon has fully stopped manufacturing the device or whether it will reappear after the introduction of the new model.