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Amazon Tablet gets played with: No e-ink, but a full-colour 7-inch touchscreen

There’s been plenty of rumblings recently that Amazon is planning to venture into the world of tablets – and that something is set to arrive in the next few months.

Now, TechCrunch has managed to grab some hands-on time with a prototype version of the device; and it’s not simply an advanced Kindle, but it will be trading on that name.

Named the Amazon Kindle, it will be a 7-inch tablet with a back-lit colour screen. With a touchscreen interface, WiFi and a 3G model in the pipeline later this year, it sounds like many Android tablets we’ve seen this year.

Amazon’s offering will also be running on Android, though it appears it will be Amazon’s own variation of the Google OS. This will mean there should be plenty to separate this one from the pack. This includes a Kindle-esque colour palette; orange, blue and black,

TechCrunch reports: “The main screen is a carousel that looks like Cover Flow in iTunes which displays all the content you have on the device. This includes books, apps, movies, etc.”

“Above the dock is the status bar (time, battery, etc) and this doubles as a notification tray. When apps have updates, or when new subscriptions are ready for you to view, they appear here.

“The top bar shows “YOUR NAME’s Kindle” and then the number of notifications you have in bright orange.”

What no widgets? According to TC’s playthrough, there’s no Android market in sight – or even any Android apps – though it will arrive with Amazon’s Android App Store when it’s available to buy.

So what’s the damage? And when can we get our hands on it? According to the report, expect the real deal to get a November release date and a price-tag of around £150 ($250).

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