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8 Things to Do Once You Fire Up Your New Kindle Fire

8 Things to Do Once You Fire Up Your New Kindle Fire Header

The Amazon Kindle Fire is a great tablet, but it’s a little sparse when you first take the device out of the box and power it on. There are no books to read, no music and not very many apps. Prepare yourself before leaving the house with your new toy. Here are some things you’ll want to do the first time you fire up your Kindle Fire.

This is a guest post by Mitch from Technipages, where he writes about technology.

1. Get a USB cable

Kindle Fire USB Connected

Chances are that at some point you’ll want to transfer files from your computer to your Kindle Fire. You’ll want to purchase a micro-USB to standard USB cable since it doesn’t come with one. If you have a cable from an existing smartphone or other device, it will work with your Kindle Fire.

2. Stock up on free ebooks

Free ebooks

Don’t have enough money to build an impressive ebook library on your Kindle Fire? That’s OK. Many classic public-domain books are available for free on Amazon. If that doesn’t satisfy your need to read, there are many third-party sites that have free books available in PDF format such as PlaneteBook, Google Books and ManyBooks.

3. Send Documents

Kindle Fire Docs

Learn about the system the Kindle Fire uses for documents. You can transfer PDF, TXT and PRC formatted documents to the device using a USB cable, or send them to the email address listed within the ‘Docs’ app and they’ll instantly be available to read on the device.

4. Download a file manager

Kindle Fire File Manager

At some point, you’re probably going to want to view individual files that are saved on your Kindle Fire. Download ES File Explorer or AndroXplorer from the Amazon Appstore and you can view any file on the device as well as install Android APK app files.

5. Get familiar with the “Manage your Kindle” section on Amazon.com

Edit Kindle Fire name 2

Many of the functions of the Kindle Fire are based in “The Cloud”. You’ll have to use the Manage your Kindle section of Amazon’s website to do things like change the device name, manage archiving, videos and music.

6. Change the User Agent in the Browser

Change Browser user agent

By default, the Kindle Fire is setup to optimize for each web site, which often means the mobile versions of web pages. Such pages are limited in the features they include. The device is fully capable of displaying full versions of web pages just fine though. Go into the Browser and select “Menu” > “Settings”  and change the “Desktop or mobile view” setting to “Desktop”.

7. Upload your music to Amazon

Amazon Fire Music

Upload your music files to Amazon Cloud Player and stream your entire music library right to your Kindle Fire without taking up any precious memory.

8. Get access to more apps

GetJar

The Amazon Appstore is nice, but it doesn’t have a lot of popular Android apps. Go to the settings gear > “Device” and turn “Allow Installation of Applications” to “On”. Then visit http://m.getjar.com in the Kindle Fire web browser and you’ll have access to a plethora of Android apps.   Now you’re properly prepared to enjoy the Kindle Fire and all it has to offer. Happy reading!

Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 12/22/11

Comments (10)

  1. Sunny

    Never really done any of them yet thanks for the tips

  2. C.Littlej

    Root it

  3. zeeko

    Awesome .

  4. kekeduvall

    Thanks you were a great help I just got my kindle fire

  5. Kerrie

    Can’t order anymore books because cant connect to WFI wont accept my passwors. No where can I find how to reset my WFI password.

  6. VoodooMan

    As someone new to Android this was an excellent article. Lot’s of useful information for those of us not willing to root the tablet…..(yet). Was looking for a “Word” app – it’s totally bogus Google Docs is unsupported – and found a nice one on getjar. That tip alone is worth many thanks.

  7. tabetha

    How do u send documents from the kindle fire to a Pc? More specifically from the documents to go app?

  8. Ranya

    I changed the settings as per #6 instructions and I still can’t see images in web pages. Any other suggestions?

  9. pdunnaville

    I recently got a Kindle Fire. I loaded the ES File Explorer. I was able to create separate folders for some photos I loaded onto my Fire using ES File Explorer. Now I want to re-name some of the photos and have not found a way to do it. Is there a way to rename photos using ES File Explorer? Any help/suggestions will be appreciated.

  10. jessa

    These apps suck don’t try it

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