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Larger Kindle Fire coming soon, say moles

Holiday surge to be followed by spring sproing?

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If you're thinking of plopping down a brace of Benjamins for a 7-inch Kindle Fire this holiday season, you might think of waiting a couple of months for the 8.9-inch version, which looks increasingly likely to be released next spring.

According to the lastest rumor from the Taiwanese market-watchers at DigiTimes, unidentified sources say that Foxconn will begin pumping out the slightly less-li'l fellow in the middle of the second quarter of 2012.

Last Friday, as Kindle-conscious Reg readers will remember, Taipei-based Citi analyst Kevin Chang said that TMS – another division of Hon Hai, Foxconn's parent company – was manufacturing "the 8.9-inch Amazon tablet".

A larger Kindle Fire has been rumored for some time to be in the works, and earlier this month the rumor mill indicated that Amazon had settled on an 8.9-inch display for its next model.

The loss-leading $199 Kindle Fire burst onto the market last Tuesday, with ChangeWave Research reporting that among the 3,043 consumers they surveyed, 2 per cent had already ordered one, 5 per cent saying the were very likely to buy one, and 12 per cent putting themselves in the "somewhat likely" camp.

In a far less scientific survey, your Reg reporter visited his local Best Buy über-retailer over the weekend to check out the tablet feeding frenzy, and found crowds, well, crowding the Apple iPad and Kindle Fire displays, leaving the plethora of other tablets – Samsung's Galaxy Tab, Motorola's Xoom, et al. – cold and lonely.

When asked how the Kindle Fire was selling, a Best Buy manager told your reporter that "It's going to be our biggest seller this season." And it's not even Thanksgiving yet.

But if you're jonesing for a Kindle Fire and you find out that all 6 million are sold out for this holiday season, buck up. It seems that an 8.9-inch version may very well be available in time to celebrate May Day, Mother's Day, or Memorial Day. ®

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