"Kindle Fire is sold out," stated Jeff Bezos, Amazon.com founder and CEO, on Thursday. And he doesn't appear to mean "we're getting a new shipment in next week"—instead, the first-generation Fire has been extinguished altogether, with an expected new product launch scheduled for next week.
Amazon announced the 7-inch Kindle Fire in November 2011 with much fanfare, and the device enjoyed a good holiday sales run with four million units sold in the month of December. Five months later, it was the number one Android tablet according to comScore. The device never quite hit all the right marks—it was clunky and slow, running an unpolished fork of Android 2.2—but it was also inexpensive and marketed heavily by Amazon.
The arrival of Google's impressive Nexus 7 tablet has only highlighted the shortcomings of the original Kindle Fire. After apparently running through its final production run in the ramp-down before the (presumed) new Fire reveal next week at an airplane hangar in Santa Monica—which we will live-blog—Amazon simply won't have any more Fires for sale until the new models become available.