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Navigating Your Kindle Fire HD 8.9"

Using the Hardware Controls

Learn how to navigate your Kindle Fire HD 8.9", including the onscreen keyboard.

Kindle Fire HD has the following hardware features:

  • Dolby audio and dual-driver stereo speakers
  • Microphone
  • Headphone Jack
  • Screen 8.9" 1920x1200 up to 1080p HD
  • Camera 720 p front-facing web camera
  • Ports Headphone, microUSB, micro-HDMI
  • Buttons Power, volume up/down

Using the Touchscreen

To navigate the touchscreen:

  1. Swipe your finger to view menus, turn pages, and scroll up or down within a screen.
  2. Tap to select buttons or text, and to enter your selections using the onscreen keyboard.
  3. Swipe or tap to turn pages.

Battery Life and Charging Your Device

Video: Charging and Battery Life on Kindle Fire

Charge Time

Kindle Fire HD 8.9" charges in under 5 hours via the Kindle PowerFast charging accessory (sold separately), or slightly longer with other micro-USB power adapters that you may already have.

Kindle Fire HD 8.9" charges in under 14 hours from your computer via the included USB charging cable. When you connect your Kindle Fire HD to a computer, you'll see a message on the Notifications bar indicating that your Kindle is connected to a low-power charger. While charging via USB, turn your Kindle off to avoid using extra power and extending your charging time.

If your Kindle Fire is turned off but properly connected to a charger or to your computer via USB, it will charge, although you will not see a charge indicator light on the Kindle.

To find the Amazon Kindle PowerFast adapter or other accessories, see:

Battery Life

Kindle Fire HD 8.9" is optimized to deliver high performance with low battery consumption.

Battery life is approximately 10 hours but will vary significantly based on device settings, usage, and other factors such as web browsing, watching video and downloading content.

If you want to optimize battery life, try the following:

Lower screen brightness

Swipe down from the top of the screen and tap Brightness to adjust.

Turn off Wireless Connectivity

  • Swipe down from the top of the screen, tap More, and then tap Wireless & Networks.
  • Next to Airplane Mode, tap On.


Use headphones


Reduce how frequently the E-mail app is checking for new messages

  • From the Home screen, tap Apps, and then tap E-mail.
  • Tap your account, and then tap Go to account settings.
  • Tap Inbox check frequency and change to a less frequent interval.

Using Kindle Fire HD Menus

Status Bar

The Status Bar is located at the top of the screen and displays notifications, the time, the Bluetooth indicator, Wi-Fi indicator, 4G/WAN indicator, Location-Based Services indicator and battery icon.

Notifications icon Notifications: Messages generated by games and applications. You can select a sound to alert you of incoming notifications in Settings.

Wifi Wi-Fi Indicator: The number of bands represents the strength of the Wi-Fi signal at your current location.

4G 4G/ WAN: The 4G / WAN indicator will display when your Kindle Fire is connected via 4G.

quick settings icon Bluetooth: The Bluetooth icon will appear when Bluetooth is on, and it will turn blue when your Kindle is paired with another Bluetooth device.

LBS Location-Based Services:A compass icon will appear when your Kindle Fire HD is using Wi-Fi to estimate your location. This happens when you're using a location-based application and have enabled Location-Based Services in Settings.

battery indicator Battery Indicator: This icon indicates the amount remaining in your battery charge.

Quick Settings and Notifications

Options Bar

Swipe down from the top of the screen to see Quick Settings. From here, you can access volume, brightness, wireless options, or tap More to see other settings.

  • Locked/Unlocked: Tap to lock or unlock the screen rotation on your Kindle Fire HD. You can lock the screen to keep it from rotating when you tilt the device.
  • Volume: Tap to adjust the volume for your Kindle Fire HD. You can also adjust volume using the buttons on the outside edge of your device. Additional volume settings are available onscreen when watching a video, listening to music, and other activities.
  • Brightness: Tap to adjust screen brightness.
  • Wireless: Tap to connect your Kindle Fire HD to a Wi-Fi network, activate Bluetooth, or turn off Wireless.
  • Sync: Tap on Sync to sync data (Books, Audio Books, MP3, Video etc) from the server.
  • More: Tap the More icon to bring up additional settings for your account. These include individual applications, Parental Controls, Location-Based services, and more.

To close Quick Settings, swipe up toward the top of the screen.


Notifications appear beneath Quick Settings, and display information like download progress, app alerts and system alerts.

  1. Tap notifications for details.
  2. Tap Clear All to remove notifications.

To turn notification settings On or Off for individual apps:

  1. Swipe down from the top of the screen.
  2. Tap More, and then tap Applications.
  3. Tap Notification Settings.

Options Bar

The Options Bar appears at the bottom of the screen when you're viewing a content library. It may be hidden when some applications are running.

To view it, swipe the tab that appears on the bottom or right of the screen. You'll see different options depending on the library or application you're using.

Additional settings are located in the Options bar at the bottom of the screen and bring up additional actions or settings, depending upon the content library or application. For example, within the Music library, tap the bottom of the screen to display Downloads, Settings, and Help options.

Standard options include:


Tap the Home button from anywhere on your Kindle Fire HD to return to the Home screen.


Tap to go to the previous screen.


Tap to view additional options related to the content type.


Tap to search your libraries, the Store, or the web.


Tap the star icon to view apps and content that you've marked as favorites.

Using Accessibility Features

Kindle Fire HD 8.9" has the following accessibility features:

  • Text-to-Speech reads your books aloud in a female voice, speaking U.S. English. For more information, see Text-to-Speech.
  • Voice Guide reads aloud details about the selections you make onscreen (for example, the title and summary of a book).
  • Explore by Touch allows you to use special gestures to navigate your Kindle Fire.
  • Orientation Lock prevents your screen from turning automatically when you rotate your Kindle Fire.

Currently, accessibility features are supported for navigation and for reading books only.

To turn on accessibility features:

  1. Swipe down from the top of the screen, and then tap More.
  2. Tap Accessibility, and then select the accessibility feature you want to turn on.


Explore by Touch

Unlock your Kindle

With two fingers, swipe from right to left near the bottom of the screen.

Open the Quick Settings menu

With two fingers, swipe down from the top of the screen.

Scroll through items in the carousel and content libraries on the Home screen

With two fingers, swipe to the left or right

Turn pages in a book

With two fingers, swipe to the left or right

Download or open an item


Make menu selections onscreen


Locking Your Screen

When you wake your Kindle Fire from sleep mode or turn it on, the lock screen appears. To unlock, swipe from right to left.

If your device has Special Offers, you'll see a tab on the left side for Special Offers. Swipe from left to right to view details of the Special Offer. Once you're done viewing the Special Offer, tap the Home icon at the bottom of the screen to return to your Kindle Fire Home screen.

You can set a password on your lock screen to restrict access to others.

To set a password:

  1. Swipe down from the top of the screen and tap More.
  2. Tap Security.
  3. Next to Lock Screen Password, tap On.
  4. Enter and confirm a numeric password. It must be at least four numbers.
  5. Tap Finish.

The next time you wake or turn on your Kindle Fire and swipe the lock icon, you'll be required to enter the password. If you forget your password, you'll need to reset your Kindle to factory defaults to regain access. Once you reset your Kindle, you'll need to register it again and re-download your Amazon content from the Cloud tab to your device.

Special Offers & Sponsored Screensavers

You can choose to purchase a Kindle Fire with or without Special Offers and Sponsored Screensavers. Amazon is able to offer Kindle models with Special Offers at a subsidized price. If you choose a device with Special Offers, you'll receive Special Offers and Sponsored Screensavers directly on your Kindle Fire. Examples of Special Offers and Sponsored Screensavers include:

  • Movie posters, music covers, and book covers for upcoming titles
  • Deals on digital content, for example: 1 of 10 top-rated Kindle books for $1, or $5 to spend in the Amazon MP3 Store
  • Deals on consumer electronics, for example: save up to $500 on select HDTVs

Your offers display on the lock screen and in small text on the lower left hand corner of the home screen—they don't interrupt use of the device.

Note: Kindle Fire models without Special Offers are only available on

If you purchase a device with Special Offers and later change your mind, you can opt out of Special Offers on Manage Your Kindle for a fee:

  1. After you register your device, go to
  2. Under Your Kindle Account, click Manage Your Devices.
  3. Next to your device, under Special Offers, click Edit next to Subscribed.
  4. You'll see a window that displays the price to unsubscribe. Click Unsubscribe now with 1-Click to proceed.

Using the Onscreen Keyboard

Kindle Fire HD 8.9" uses an onscreen keyboard. When you begin actions that require text, such as search, the onscreen keyboard appears.


Switch keyboard to display numbers and symbols

Switch keyboard to display the default keyboard

Delete a letter, word or phrase

Shift key for uppercase letters (double-tap to shift-lock the keyboard)

Press and hold to display a split keyboard

Press and hold the globe key to switch keyboard languages and access Keyboard Settings. Select English (U.S.), English (U.K.), German, French, Italian, Spanish, Japanese, and Chinese (Simplified)

Typing Features

The keyboard also includes the following features:

Current word prediction

Word choices appear above the on-screen keyboard that predict the word you're currently typing. If the word you want is there, tap it to insert.

You can't turn off this feature, but using it is optional.
Next word prediction

Word choices appear above the on-screen keyboard that predict the next word you might type once you hit the space bar. If the word you want is there, tap to insert.

To turn this feature off or on, press and hold the Space bar, and then tap Keyboard Settings.

Auto-capitalization capitalizes appropriate words.

To turn this feature off or on, press and hold the Space bar, and then tap Keyboard Settings.

Auto-correct fixes mistakes while you type.

To keep your spelling as-is, tap your own spelling in the word choices above the keyboard.

To turn this feature on or off, press and hold the Space bar, and then tap Keyboard Settings.

Using Swype to enter text

You can type on the onscreen keyboard like any other keyboard. In addition, you can also use Swype. Swype is a fast way to enter text. It lets you create a word by drawing through letters. Swype also provides additional keyboard functions like copy and paste, and a split keyboard option.

To enter text with Swype, put your finger on the first letter of the word and draw a path from letter to letter, lifting up after the last letter. Swype will insert spaces where necessary.


Keyboard Tips

To replace a word

Tap the word and then select the word you want from the word list directly above the keyboard.

Bring up alternate characters

Press and hold a letter and then tap your selection.

  • cut
  • copy
  • paste
  • select all
  • select text
  • enter
  • use arrows to move the typing cursor

Press and hold the ?123 key with the small scissors icon.Scissors

Use a split keyboard (this works best in landscape orientation) Press and hold the comma key with the small keyboard icon. Keyboard
Personal Dictionary To add a word to your Personal Dictionary, tap in the word and select it from the word choice list above the keyboard. The word will be added to your personal dictionary automatically after you have entered the word twice. In the Keyboard Settings menu you can navigate to your Personal Dictionary to remove your custom words.

Keyboard Shortcuts

Swype from “?123” to “a”

Select All

Swype from “?123” to “c” Copy
Swype from “?123” to “x”


Swype from “?123” to “v” Paste
Swype from “.” to space bar

Inserts a period and a space (useful at the end of a sentence)

Swype from “?123” to “t” Brings up the Number keypad
Swype from “?123” to “Delete” Hides keyboard
Swype from “w” to “.” Outputs “www.”

To capitalize the first letter of a word

While touching the first letter, swipe straight upward off the edge of the keyboard, then without lifting your finger, swipe to the next letter.

To change the case of a word

Tap the word. Swipe up from the ?123 key to the shift (arrow) key, and then select the word you want from the word list directly above the keyboard.

Using the Carousel, Favorites, and Content Libraries

The Carousel on your Home screen displays your most recently viewed content, including books, videos, music, magazines, and apps.

  1. Swipe your finger across the screen to advance the carousel.
  2. Tap an item to select it.


  1. The most recently accessed items appear first.
  2. Newly purchased items are marked New.
  3. Bookmark badges show what percentage of a book you've read.

To remove an item:

  1. Tap and hold the item.
  2. Tap Remove from Carousel.

Recommendations on the Home Screen

When using your Kindle Fire HD in portrait mode, you'll see content recommendations like Customers Also Bought beneath the carousel on the Home screen. Tap any recommendation to see its product detail page on

To turn off Home Recommendations:

  1. Swipe down from the top of the screen and tap More.
  2. Tap Applications.
  3. Tap Amazon Home Recommendations, and then tap Hide.


Access your favorites by tapping the star in the bottom right corner of the screen.

Favorites Bar

To add an item in the Carousel to Favorites:

  1. Tap and hold an item.
  2. Tap Add to Favorites.

To remove an item from Favorites:

  1. Tap the star.
  2. Tap and hold and item, and then tap Remove from Favorites.


Your Libraries are displayed at the top of your Home screen. Libraries show all the content you own.
Tap the Library name to see all the available content within that Library.

Library Bar

Tap to select items in your Libraries. For example, tap Books, and then tap a book name on the Device tab to view the book.

Setting Screen Rotation

You can view your Kindle Fire HD in either portrait or landscape orientation. Rotating your Kindle Fire HD rotates the screen.

To lock the screen orientation:

  1. Swipe down from the top of the screen.
  2. Tap the screen rotation icon (the first icon on left) to lock or unlock.
Learn about how to navigate your Kindle Fire HD 8.9".

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