Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Software Update For Kindle Fire Version 6.2.1

Before we get to the software update, I've got to tell everyone that you can now get FREE 2-Day shipping when you order any Kindle! This offer will only last until 8pm PST 12/21! Act now!






In response to grumbling about various features, Amazon has released a new software update for the Kindle Fire! As you'll recall, people were unhappy about a lack of parental controls, despite all of the parental controls, and they were upset about the problems with purchasing, despite easy ways to fix this. So let's see what changes Amazon made to make the Fire even more user-friendly, which is certainly not a bad thing.

Again, software update 6.2.1 is being rolled out today (there isn't even a page for it on Amazon yet), but you can get it now by downloading the file directly from This Link. Then hook your Fire to your computer, move the file on, and install it. To see what version you're running, tap Quick Settings > More > Device, and check "System Version."

Once you have it going, you may notice improvements to the touchscreen and general responsiveness, but there are a few changes that deserve some more in-depth discussion.

Removing Items From Carousel
Being able to adjust or hide items from the carousel is a big plus. Sometimes you just don't want everything to appear there, and this new update takes care of that perfectly. Just tap and hold down the item, and you'll see a few more options than usual pop-up. In addition to "Remove from Device" and "Add to Favorites," you'll now see "Remove from Carousel." Easy and convenient. Note that removed items return to the carousel if you open them again.

Password-Protecting Wi-Fi Access
In my opinion, Amazon took an interesting tact to the problem of parental controls and purchasing problems. People weren't using the free apps, and they weren't using their account settings. So what could they do? They decided to wall off the Internet, which does go right to the root of a lot of these problems. With no internet, kids won't be able to make purchases or go where they shouldn't. It's a quick-fix solution that obviously prevents kids from doing anything productive on the internet too. But anyway, to access this feature, go to Settings > Enable Restrictions, and then activate and set a password for WiFi. In case it needs to be anymore obvious, it gives you a reminder "Be sure to disable WiFi before giving the device to your child."

Storage Breakdown
You can now see a clear breakdown of how much storage you have left for the 2 major categories. There's Application Storage (apps) with 1.17 GB and Internal Storage (Your Data) with 5.36 GB. It's unfortunate that space for apps is limited, though there is still space for plenty of apps. Remember, some apps can be serious battery and space hogs, and a good way to see what is doing the damage is Badass Battery Monitor.           


It looks like any other major changes are all behind the scenes. Users who have "rooted" their devices will find their changes reversed and they will be blocked from re-rooting. If we come across any other changes, we'll be sure to let everyone know!

22 comments:

  1. i want folders for my apps! so my angry birds games are not mixed in with my calculator & nook reader! i'll wait.. but i hope it comes soon!

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  2. This might sound really retarded... but how do I install the update once I move it to the kindle? Should I move it to a specific folder? I tried moving it into "downloads" but I can't see the file in there once I removed the USB from the Fire. I tried clicking on it while Kindle is connected to the laptop, that didn't work... please help!

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  3. Not a bad idea at all, smiling. I'd like to see that too. The best way to make sure they know it needs to be a priority in the next update is to contact customer service and make a suggestion! :)

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  4. Please, please,PLEASE, let me put my books into categories! It is the ONLY thing I do not like about my Kindle Fire. My Fire is my 3rd Kindle and being able to organize my books is very important. On my 2nd Kindle, I have close to 200 book. I have not transferred them to my Fire because (1) I am too lazy and (2) I cannot categorize them.

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  5. @Ruthless, not a problem at all. Actually the folder you want to move the file to is called KindleUpdate, or you can do it with a free File Manager app like this one: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B004HN2FY0/?tag=fireapps-20

    Another option is to make sure the Fire is connected, sync, and let it fall asleep. Turning it off and on is another way to try to goad an automatic update. Hope something here works for you!

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  6. @Leighfirst: We absolutely agree that easier categorization would be nice, and I have a feeling something like that is in the works. As I said above, your best bet is to express what you'd like to see to customer service. :)

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  7. Ruthless: follow the directions here:

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=200790620

    just use the link above instead.

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  8. FYI: There's a link on the right side of this page for contacting customer service: http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html/?ie=UTF8&nodeId=200127470&tag=fireapps-20

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  9. Thanks guys!!! My Fire is now happily updated :)

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  10. Glad to hear it, Ruthless. And thanks to Eric for the additional help.

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  11. Update is very smooth and easy. Love the "Remove from Carousel" addition. Thank you Kindle Fire Department for keeping me on the cutting edge of the "fire" line...

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  12. You're very welcome, Walker. Thank you for visiting us!

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  13. You guys are the BEST!! I don't know what we would all do without the Fire Dept. to keep us current and up-to-date. My father-in-law just bought a Fire and this blog was my first tip for him! :)

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  14. Carousel update fixes most my issues. Also i use maxthon web browser instead of standard. Much better.

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  15. Many thanks for helping us get the word out, Shannon. Hopefully he enjoys his Fire as much as we do!

    Happy Holidays to all!

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  16. For some reason this update wont show up on my fire? I load it on It does not show in my downloads, I have reset turned it off and back on, syncing doesn't work or does resteting it. Any other ideas?

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  17. Hi Ken, I'm not sure what more I can say other than the advice given above. If you're having trouble locating the file on your Fire, a free file manager app might help. http://www.amazon.com/dp/B004HN2FY0/?tag=fireapps-20 Remember you're looking to get the file in the KindleUpdate folder.

    The automatic update is supposed to universally go out at around 9:00 AM pacific time (according to CS), so either way you shouldn't need to wait too much longer.

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  18. So this is a little off topic, but it's an issue I was hoping the update would fix...

    My fire crashes intermittently but frequently enough that it's a pretty big annoyance. It seems arbitrary -- the only way I can consistently cause it to crash is by trying to "zoom" on a page of a magazine from the newsstand. But it'll crash occasionally during games, watching movies, etc. (never yet while reading books).

    I've already been in touch with Amazon and a replacement will be arriving tomorrow, but I was just curious if others have had (or heard about) this problem. I'm guessing (and hoping) that it's just got a bad stick of RAM or something, but I'd like to know if this problem is widespread or if I just got an odd "lemon".

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  19. Hi Sean, I have heard of problems like this with crashes or other serious issues that necessitate a replacement. My guess is this happens with far less than 1% of devices. I'm sorry you had this experience and I hope your new one is problem free!

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  20. I love my Kindle Fire and love this blog.

    Thanks for all you do.
    Debbie

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  21. Thank you very much for visiting, Debbie! We're glad to help! :)

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