Amazon came under fire after announcing non-removable ads for its Amazon Kindle Fire HD series, a decision the company has backtracked from following broad reaching criticism from tech writers and the general media.
Amazon will now allow customers to remove lock screen and homepage ads for a cost of $15. Customers can pay the fee when ordering or after receiving their new tablet. The option to remove ads will be made available on both the Fire HD and $159 entry-level Fire model.
This is not the first time Amazon has charged customers for the right to remove ads, the company’s E-Ink Kindle e-reader could have ads removed for a one-time $30 fee.
The original Amazon Kindle Fire came at a cost of $199.99 and was sold by Amazon as a loss-leader. Amazon had hoped that new ads featured on the Kindle Fire HD would help it recuperate some of the initial losses as customers purchase the high definition tablet.
While Amazon tablets are based off the highly popular Google Android OS the platform has been highly customized by Amazon. For example the Google Play store has been removed and Amazon had deleted Google created apps in favor of its own Appstore and multimedia content.
In an official statement regarding its decision Amazon wrote:
“We know from our Kindle reader line that customers love our special offers and very few people choose to opt out. We’re happy to offer customers the choice.”
Users who choose to keep the Amazon Kindle Fire HD ads on their devices will receive quick access to special Amazon deals through its online retail operations.