Amazon Fire 7 2022 review: A budget tablet gets a design and a quick update

Amazon the smallest and cheapest tablet gets a much needed upgrade in design, speed, battery life and software – but with a price increase.

The 12th-generation Fire 7 starts at £ 59.99 ($ ​​59.99) – £ 10 more than the latest version – but still offers the biggest profit in the budget tablet market.

Amazon’s tablets all have a proven formula: a simple durable design, a reasonable quality display, fairly fast chips and their own version of Android with a long support life offered at much less than major rivals.

The back of the Fire 7 board showing the Amazon logo.
The body of the tablet is made of 35% recycled plastic and feels smooth and hard. Photo: Samuel Gibbs / The Guardian

The new Fire 7 inherits the smoother, more modern and slimmer design of the recent Fire HD 8 and HD 10 tablets. The 7-inch screen is better in the flesh than it might seem on paper but it’s not HD and pales in comparison to more pricey competition. It is suitable for random viewing of TV shows and movies, but it does not have an automatic brightness adjustment, so you will have to manually turn it off at night or up in bright light.

The money speaker sounds surprisingly good for personal viewing but is a little too quiet to beat the noise of cooking in a kitchen or similar. There’s a headset on the top for cable listening, but the tablet supports Bluetooth 5 and should work with any wireless headphones you have.


  • Screen: 7 in (1024 x 600) LCD (171ppi)
  • Processor: 2GHz quad-core
  • RAM: 2GB of RAM
  • Storage: 16 GB; microSD slot also available
  • Operating system: Fire OS 8 based on Android 11
  • Camera: 2MP rear and front cameras
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 5, USB-C, headphones
  • Dimensions: 180.7 x 117.6 x 9.7mm
  • Weight: 282 g

Faster with longer battery life

The buttons and charging port on the side of the Amazon Fire 7 tablet.
The new Fire 7 has a modern USB-C port for charging, replacing its predecessor’s microUSB port, along with a standard headphone jack. Photo: Samuel Gibbs / The Guardian

The tablet has a new processor and more RAM, which makes it up to 30% faster than its predecessor. It’s still not what I might call fast, but the interface is quite responsive and videos load quickly. Sometimes applications can be a bit sluggish, but games worked well.

The base model has 16GB of storage – 9.5GB of which is available for apps and media – but it also has a microSD card slot to add more space cheaply.

Battery life is very good, lasting at least 10 hours of video viewing, which is definitely enough for a compact tablet and three hours longer than its predecessor. It charges very slowly, however, taking four hours to fully charge with the included 5W power adapter and only about 30 minutes faster using more powerful chargers.

Fire OS 8.3

An episode of Ms Marvel on Disney + playing on the Fire 7 tablet.
Amazon’s App Store has most of the top media streaming apps available, including Disney +. Photo: Samuel Gibbs / The Guardian

The Fire 7 is Amazon’s first tablet to launch a new and updated version of its Fire OS software, now based on the more modern Android 11, which brings enhanced security and privacy options. It lacks Google’s Play services and store, relying on Amazon’s App Store and services. Amazon usually backs up its tablets longer than cheap Android rivals, with at least several years of software and security updates.

The interface is similar to previous versions of Fire OS, with a simple home screen for apps and media, a personalized “for you” section and a “library” section with all your owned Kindle books, games, movies, and other media. In addition it has an Alexa built to control devices and answer questions.

Amazon’s App Store has most of the consumer media apps you’ll probably want in the UK, but Google’s BT Sport, Paramount +, YouTube, Chrome and Maps, and Apple’s Music and TV aren’t available. Zoom, Skype and Alexa are available for video calling, while the store has a fairly large range of games, even if many of them are junk. Note Fortnite does not support Fire 7.

You need an Amazon account to use the tablet, in addition to a Prime subscription giving access to Prime Video to really benefit from it. Note that device encryption is not enabled out of the box, so I recommend turning it on when it is configured to protect your data in case of theft.


The speaker grille on the top edge of the Fire 7 tablet.
The money speaker at the top of the tablet is well positioned to prevent it from being blocked when portable. Photo: Samuel Gibbs / The Guardian

Amazon does not provide an expected lifespan for the battery, but it should last more than 500 full charge cycles with at least 80% of its original capacity. The Fire 7 is generally repairable and contains 35% post-consumer recycled plastic. The company offers commercial and recycling schemes and publishes information on its various sustainability efforts.


The Amazon Fire 7 costs £ 59.99 ($ ​​59.99) with advertisements on the lock screen and 16GB of storage or £ 69.99 ($ ​​79.99) with 32GB. Removing advertisements from the key screen costs an additional £ 10 ($ 15).

A children’s edition of the Fire 7 with a sturdy case, a two-year replacement warranty and a one-year Kids + subscription service, Amazon’s child-friendly apps, games and media, cost £ 109.99.

For comparison, the Fire HD 8 costs £ 89.99, Fire HD 10 costs £ 149.99 and Apple’s 10.2-inch iPad costs £ 319.


The Amazon Fire 7 is still a basic tablet for simple browsing, reading and media consumption.

The revamped, more modern design, faster chip, longer battery life and newer version of Android are all welcome updates. But it won’t excite you, it lacks Google and it lacks some apps, and it can’t beat iPad.

But that’s not the point. It does the job for as little money as possible, with much longer software support than budget competitors at this price point. Despite a rise of £ 10, the Fire 7 still has an incredible value at just £ 60. It will please everyone who wants to spend as little as possible to go online and watch a video.

Advantages: solid battery life, microSD card slot, USB-C charging, headphone jack, reasonable performance, very low cost, Alexa integration, made from recycled plastic.

Disadvantages: screen only SD, bad cameras, slow charging, no apps from Google Play or Apple, some apps missing from Amazon App Store, require a subscription from Amazon Prime to take advantage of it for the most part.

Alexa showing the weather forecast for Kings Cross on the Amazon Fire 7.
Alexa can be used hands-free or on-demand by holding the home button. Photo: Samuel Gibbs / The Guardian

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