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Customer Discussions > Kindle forum

Wi-Fi only, or 4G LTE needed with a Kindle Fire HDX 8.9?

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Showing 1-16 of 16 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Nov 14, 2013 4:26:38 PM PST
I have read the literature, but don't understand a whole lot about Wi-Fi and 4 G. My kindle has 3G and WiFi. When I get the Kindle Fire HDX 8.9 tablet, I will use it for facebook, internet, shopping, email. Do I have to have a 4G plan to access those types of activities away from home? Or will the 3 G give me what I need?
Thanks, G.

Posted on Nov 14, 2013 5:10:42 PM PST
Artist says:
There is NO 3G on the Fires, only Wi-Fi. If you want to be able to connect when you're not near a Wi-Fi hotspot, you'll need the 4G with a monthly data plan, for which you have to pay -- either AT&T or Verizon.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 14, 2013 5:25:46 PM PST
A. Dietz says:
If you can find WiFi hotspots away from home there is no need for a 4G model. You'll save money on the device and you'll save by not having to pay for a monthly 4G data plan.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 14, 2013 5:35:11 PM PST
When I got my iPad Mini I chose the WiFi only version because 90% of the time I have WiFi access, at home and at work. All the hotels I've stayed at over the past year have had WiFi as well. So do most airports. I figure the rest of the time I can live without Internet access. If I really need to check my email I can use my smart phone.

Of course your situation may be different but it's something to consider.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 14, 2013 5:49:00 PM PST
Carbonbased says:
You're talking about three different things.

1. Wi-Fi is a local area network you (or the hotel/restaurant/wherever) provide with a wireless router connected to a high speed Internet connection. All currently available Kindles can connect to Wi-Fi anywhere it's not locked.

2. 3G is the cellular signal that older Kindles and one of the PaperWhites use to download books when out of range of Wi-Fi. It's older/slower than 4G LTE and Amazon still picks up the tab for wireless book delivery over 3G on e-ink Kindles that have that feature, but NOT on any Fires.

3. 4G LTE is the state of the art cellular connection. The difference between 3G and 4G LTE is like the difference between DSL and fiberoptic internet. Only last year's Fire HDs and HDXs with cellular modems built in (extra cost at time of purchase) can use the 4G LTE network and you have to go through Verizon or AT&T to purchase a plan for the tablet or add it to your cell phone's plan. You also need to pick a carrier at time of purchase, as Verizon and AT&T use incompatible hardware.

Posted on Nov 14, 2013 5:52:59 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 14, 2013 5:57:49 PM PST
Retired EE says:
Your Kindle with 3G has both Wi-Fi and AT&T cellular 3G radios built in. Amazon has a contract with AT&T to provide service to those Kindles at no cost to the Kindle owner. That arrangement has never been available to Kindle Fire tablets and only the 4G KF models have cellular radios. Every Kindle has a Wi-Fi radio. The Internet is available from Wi-Fi or 4G so either one will provide access on the HDX to all functions including those you listed. The 4G model is needed if Internet access is needed when there is no Wi-Fi available. As a side note the HDX 4G models are available with radios for either AT&T or Verizon but not both so you must select your carrier when you purchase a 4G HDX. 4G cannot be added later. A separate Hotspot can be purchased or added to your smart phone to provide Wi-Fi for the tablet when Wi-Fi is not available (my choice). All 4G access has a monthly charge.

Posted on Nov 17, 2013 7:31:41 AM PST
Thank you for the information. It helped! G.

Posted on Nov 17, 2013 7:43:15 AM PST
I am interested in purchasing a kindle fire for books, email, web shopping, don't expect to use it for movies. Is the 8.9 much heavier than the 7 model? I am not sure if I need the larger screen. Do I need wifi to read the books downloaded to kindle? Do I need to be a amazon prime member to access free books from them? I certainly appreciate your help.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 17, 2013 8:15:35 AM PST
A. Dietz says:
1) Screen size is a personal preference. If you're not sure you should go to a store that carries Kindles (Best Buy, Staples, Office Depot, etc.) and see for yourself.
2) You need to connect to WiFi at least once to register your Kindle. After that you can download books using USB transfer from a PC/Mac. once the books are downloaded to your Kindle, you do not need to be connected to WiFi to read them.
3) There are no free books as a Prime member. You can borrow 1 book/month from the Kindle Owners' lending Library from your Kindle, but you have to return it before you get the next one. There are thousands of free Kindle books on, but you don't have to have a Prime subscription to get them.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 17, 2013 10:39:32 AM PST
MikeJW says:
But, A. Dietz, there is that new deal of one free book a month for Prime members. They choose from a few that Amazon offers.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 17, 2013 11:29:16 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 17, 2013 11:44:17 AM PST
Mike, I assume you are talking about Kindle First.

Posted on Nov 17, 2013 2:43:07 PM PST
Donna says:
Thank you all for this thread! I have been going crazy with the question of just Wi-Fi or Wi-Fi and 4GLTE. I called AT&T to find out price and it's $50 a month! I'm with Retired EE, I'll use my cell phone as a hot spot......I pay enough for that internet availability......and I have wireless at home and at work. Thank you!!!!

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 17, 2013 2:55:37 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 17, 2013 2:56:22 PM PST
T. Clark says:
I am testing the 64GB HDX 7 & 16GB HDX 8.9 right now. The specs say the 8.9 is heavier. However, maybe it has to do with weight (in hand) spread over a wider area but the 8.9 almost feels lighter than the 7. I have had secondary (IT co-workers) agree with me on this. The 8.9 is crazy light.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 17, 2013 9:56:02 PM PST
In addition, as a US Prime member you can download one prereleased book each month, free to keep forever, whether you have a Kindle device or a Kindle app.

Read more at:

Posted on Dec 15, 2013 9:26:21 AM PST
Ike Kent says:
Can u do month to month on the AT&T plan? No contract

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 15, 2013 9:29:42 AM PST
A. Dietz says:
Ike, you have to ask AT&T about their account options.
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Discussion in:  Kindle forum
Participants:  13
Total posts:  16
Initial post:  Nov 14, 2013
Latest post:  Dec 15, 2013

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