When it comes to business-ready tablets, Amazon's Kindle devices refuse to be left behind.
Amazon released today (Nov. 18) Fire OS 3.1, a free software update that brings new business capabilities to the Kindle Fire HD and Kindle Fire HDX. In addition to bug fixes and improved performance and battery life, Fire OS 3.1 includes Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) support, cloud integration and several handy features that can help business users be more productive.
1. BYOD support
For business users who want to bring their Kindle to work, the Fire OS 3.1 update turns the Kindle Fire HD and Kindle Fire HDX into BYOD-friendly devices.
Fire OS 3.1 enables these devices to connect to secure enterprise-level Wi-Fi networks and access corporate apps, documents and other resources, such as Microsoft's Web-based SharePoint collaboration app.
The update also now supports native virtual private network (VPN) client access corporate networks; a native Simple Certificate Enrollment Protocol (SCEP) to retrieve digital certificates for secure resources; and Kerberos authentication that allows the Silk browser to connect to secure Intranet websites.
For IT departments, the update includes Kindle-specific device management APIs that makes it easy to connect and manage Kindle devices on existing mobile device management (MDM) systems.
2. Cloud integration
Included in the Fire OS 3.1 update is cloud integration via Cloud Collections.
Cloud Collections not only organizes books, newspapers and magazines, but also apps in customized collections for easy reference. Cloud Collections also features Whispersync, which synchronizes collections across Kindle devices.
Business users will also like the 1-Tap archive feature, which frees up space on the device. 1-Tap archive groups content that have not been recently used, and in one tap stores them into the cloud for later retrieval.
3. Productivity capabilities
In addition to BYOD and cloud support, the Fire OS 3.1 update also offers several productivity tools.
One feature business users will find particularly useful is wireless printing. Fire OS 3.1 now enables the latest Kindle devices to wirelessly print a range of files, from emails and documents to PDF files, contacts, calendars and photos.
Included in the update is Second Screen, which turns a television into a secondary display. This feature leaves the Kindle Fire HDX free to act as a playback control or perform other tasks, such as check emails, browse the Web and more.
Voice dictation is also now available, which converts speech to text for on-the-go or hands-free commands. Voice dictation is available in all languages online, but is limited to English offline.
The Fire OS 3.1 update will automatically be available over-the-air in the coming weeks. Starting today, users can also go to www.amazon.com/kindlesoftwareupdates to manually download and install the update.
Originally published on BusinessNewsDaily.