Amazon is making the Kindle Fire 2. It's not a matter of if, but rather a matter of when at this point in time. All signs are pointing to a late July reveal with a launch in August for the new tablet that will be taking on Google's Nexus 7 head-on. Unsurprisingly, the Kindle Fire 2 is not the only tablet the company has in store for consumers according to Staples' president of U.S. retail.
Speaking to Reuters, Staples President of U.S. Retail Demos Parneros said that Amazon will be introducing five or six new tablet SKUs for this year. One of those tablets is even rumored to be a 10-inch model that would directly take on the iPad 2 and new iPad.
There also appears to be potential for an Amazon smartphone in the near future. Founder of Ammunition, Robert Brunner, points to the recent explosion of employee growth at Amazon's Lab126 research and design center as evidence that the company is making more than just tablets.
Amazon is better poised than any other company to take on Apple at their own game. They have the install base and the technology to compete directly with the Cupertino giant. That's why it makes perfect sense for Amazon to start releasing more than just one mobile device a year. A Kindle Fire 2 alongside a 10-inch Fire and a smartphone have the potential to eat away from Apple's market share and the market share of other large Android incumbents like Samsung.
Google is also rumored to be making a 10-inch version of their already popular Nexus 7. Amazon will obviously want to beat them to the punch while making a better 7-inch tablet to compete directly with the Nexus 7. Now that Google has entered the ring, Amazon has to fight a war on multiple fronts. The Kindle brand is definitely strong enough to fight said war.
It's also worth noting the humor of these companies now pushing a 10-inch tablet to catch up with Apple while Apple is rumored to be pushing a 7-inch tablet to capture the market held by Amazon and Google. It's a game of cat and mouse that will never end as these companies try to one up each other. That kind of competition can only be good for the consumer as long as Apple prices the iPad Mini competitively.