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Amazon tablet hype continues: Android-based, made by Samsung

Amazon LogoAmazon’s tablet ambitions is one of the worst kept secrets in tech, and affirmations from Gdgt contributor and Engadget founder, Peter Rojas, are only supporting these suspicions: “It’s something of an open secret that Amazon is working on an Android tablet and I am 99 percent certain they are having Samsung build one for them.”

Rojas believes that if anyone can take a successful stab at the flooded tablet market it’s Amazon. The retail web giant already has an abundance of content for a tablet, with its streaming services (which extend to movie, TV, and music), book downloads, Android app store, and digital locker service. This isn’t entirely groundbreaking, however: Barnes & Noble’s answer to the Kindle, the Nook, is nothing more than an Android tablet with its own custom UI layer. Plus, the e-reader/tablet hybrid is taking those crucial strides by implementing its own app store and possibly picking up Flash support.

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So enter Amazon. With a quality tablet manufacturer like Samsung paired with its own Android-based ecosystem, the company is likely to produce a simplified device that will center around Amazon content and software for sale to drive profits for its digital products. Amazon won’t compete with the all-encompassing, do-everything tablets, but that means it will cost much less – Rojas argues if Amazon really wants to tempt consumers, it will price a tablet “at no more than $250.” It’s not intended to stand up to the iPad or the Xoom or the PlayBook – it’s intended to be a platform that sells you Amazon content. Rojas says we could see the device “probably no later than this summer.”

It certainly seems like Amazon has positioned itself for this. The retailer has made huge strides in delivering digital goods to its customers, and what better way to market these than package it all up in the gadget of the moment?

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