According to the China Times, Amazon's supply chain has started to ship components to its Quanta assembly plant Quanta. The first wave of shipments of about 200 million units which should be in the shops by 7 August.
Last year Amazon released the $199 Kindle Fire and did rather well. But the fear is that the Nexus 7 will force Amazon to drop the price. Amazon's answer is to release a new tablet which people will pay the same price for.
The new tablet will have a metal casing and a better camera lens and improved screen resolution. The displays coming from LG and touch panels supplied by TPK.
It is unlikely to match the bells and whistles which are under the bonnet of Apple's coming seven inch tablet, but it will be much cheaper. There is still no news about the predicted 10” and 8.9” Kindle Fires yet. When these arrive then Amazon will be in a serious position in the tablet market, and it is likely that they will have to appear soon.
In the meantime Amazon is making sure that it loses nothing of the ground it has captured so far.