Rumors that Amazon is building a full-fledged tablet based on Android have been swirling for some time, and now TechCrunch's MG Siegler has published some details based on actual hands-on time. The tablet is reportedly going to have a 7-inch touchscreen with a backlit LCD for the display. The design is said to be very similar to RIM's BlackBerry Playbook (hence the Photoshopped image above) and based on Android. However, Android will be little more than the underpinnings here, like Sony's Reader Wi-Fi and Fusion Garage's Grid 10, the entire UI is custom. The homescreen will be a Cover Flow-like series of images representing your content. Navigation will come via a row of buttons on the bottom that appear on a single tap. There will also be a status bar for notifications, battery life, and so on.
Amazon has been creating the necessary building blocks for a tablet ecosystem devoid of Google services for some time now, having released the Amazon App Store for Android Apps, Amazon Instant Video for movies and television, Amazon Music play for cloud-based music, and of course Kindle for ebooks. So while this is technically based on Android, it's fully an Amazon tablet with no Google involvement or Google apps. While we will need to see just how fully-featured the Kindle Tablet is when it's released, for the time-being it looks like it will be be directly taking on the Nook, which is also an Android-powered ereader at the same price point.
If everything works out as above, we should expect a late-November release for a very-affordable $250. The initial version will be a Wi-Fi-only device, with 3G and potentially even a 10-inch version coming later depending on how well the original Kindle Tablet does on the market.