The usual unreliable source has invented another scoop today, and this one is particularly laughable.
Source within Amazon have disclosed that there will be a new version of the Kindle Fire with 3G functionality. It will work the same as the 3G variants of their ereader class that allows the user free 3G internet access. The company has been quietly upgrading their network to support all of the media that will be streamed online. This will allow the Kindle Fire to give you all of the internet content and shop for books while on the go.
Amazon has a long established track record during the last four years of providing free 3G internet access with their e-ink readers. They are always more expensive then their WIFI counterparts, but allows more freedom to purchase content while outside wireless areas. … You will not have to pay anything extra for the 3G internet access but there is internal debate on what you can do while on 3G access.
First, one important detail that the unreliable source forgot to mention was that Amazon doesn’t offer free browsing over 3G on the Kindles anymore; that feature is blocked on the Kindle Touch. That makes it more than a little unlikely that Amazon would offer a similar feature on the Kindle Fire.
Update: They’ve edited their post to back down from the rumor they invented.
But even if Amazon offered a 3G equipped Kindle Fire, the 3G service won’t be free.
The thing is, back before the KF launched I got into a debate on whether Amazon might do this, and most everyone thought the answer was no. (Yes, while I was steadfastly denying the possibility of the KF I was also debating how it would work. I’m weird like that.) While Amazon might offer you a 3G equipped KF it will not come with free access to anything. The bandwidth would simply cost too much.
Amazon likely won’t even offer free 3G access to even their own content. They already have Android apps and Kindle ebooks for sale on their site which are listed as not being downloadable over 3G. The files are too big, and that means the transmission cost is too high.
And free streaming content? Don’t make me laugh. A heavy use of Amazon’s own video service could easily blow through the entire $200 retail price of the KF in under a couple months, assuming the content is going over a 3G connection.
Do you want to know how much mobile data costs? iPad owners are paying $20 per GB, and even the best data plan costs $40 a month for unlimited service. Do you really think Amazon is going to eat that cost?
Yeah, this is one of those rumors that you consider just long enough to discard as improbable. Amazon is simply not set up for it.