Amazon’s Fire tablets are on sale for some of their lowest prices ever as part of the company’s Prime Day sale which runs through the end of July 17th, 2018.

You can pick up a Fire 7 for as little as $30, a Fire HD 8 for $50 and up, and a Fire HD 10 for $100. You can save even more if you buy a 3-pack.

More details are available in our Prime Day deals roundup. But you might be wondering: what can I do with an Amazon Fire tablet? Well, that depends. Do you want to stick with officially supported features, or are you looking to do a little hacking to extend the functionality?

In a nutshell you can root the Amazon Fire HD 10, but not the latest Fire HD 8 or Fire 7 models. But you can install the Google Play Store and/or alternate app launchers on any of Amazon’s current tablets.

If you still need more info before deciding whether to spend a few bucks on an Amazon Fire tablet during Prime Day, read on for more details.

Amazon Fire HD 8 with Google Play

Out of the box you can use any of Amazon’s Fire tablets to surf the web using Amazon’s Silk web browser, read eBooks from the Kindle Store, stream videos from Amazon Video, and install apps and games from the Amazon Appstore, just to name a few possibilities. Recently Amazon also added hands-free Alexa voice support and the Fire HD lineup gained a “Show Mode” optionthat lets you use the tablets like a smart speaker-with-a-screen.

But there are still hundreds of thousands of Android apps that aren’t in the Amazon Appstore. And if you’ve already purchased apps for your Android phone or tablet from the Google Play Store, you’d have to pay again to buy them from Amazon even if they are available.

So as far as I’m concerned, one of the first things I look to do on an Amazon tablet is install the Play Store. But you may also want to go further and customize the look and feel of the device if you’re not a fan of Amazon’s default home screen and app launcher.

Fortunately, the folks at the xda-developers forum are on it. Here are some links to help get you started hacking Amazon’s tablets. Keep in mind that there’s always a chance you could damage your device by doing some of these things, so make sure to read all the instructions carefully before getting started. 

Amazon Fire HD 10 (7th-gen)

Root

No root required

Amazon Fire HD 8 (7th-gen)

Amazon Fire 7 (7th-gen)






Summer 2019 Update:

Amazon Fire tablet hacks: Google Play, Root, Recovery, and ROMs

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4 replies on “Hacking Amazon’s 7th-gen Fire tablets (Prime Day 2018 update)”

  1. Dear Brad Linder,
    thank you for your article. I’m not introduced in to any Andoid-things, but actually I have to answer the question, if an amazon fire tablet „Fire HD 10″ (7th generation) with FireOS-5.6.2.0. ist upgrade-able to minimum Android 7.

    Maybei you can post me a quick hint for that?
    Best regards, Philipp

    1. Fire OS 5.6 is based on Android 5.0, and right now that’s the latest version of Fire OS available for that device.

      But Amazon’s Fire OS 6.2 is based on Android 7. I believe that version is only available for Amazon Fire TV devices so far, but it will probably roll out to tablets like the Fire HD 10 in the future.

      1. They are already advertising the 8th generation with the 6. Operating system, but not available for the 7th , which is BS since a lot of apps require minimum of the 6.I just purchased the 7th and not happy.

  2. Excellent write-up. Here’s another tip that I stumbled upon myself (but is probably well known to others)… Out of the box, the Fire HD 10 cannot screencast. After installing the Google Play Store, some Google apps, and Google Home, it is now able to cast to a chromecast.

    The Fire HD 10 also works extremely well with the Motorola wireless keyboard (w/trackpoint).

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