US firms ChangeWave and RBC Capital Markets have been surveying people to get their opinions on Amazon’s Kindle Fire tablet, which goes on sale in the US next week. They found that 5% of the 2,600 respondents have already pre-ordered a Kindle Fire or are ‘very likely’ to buy one soon – more than the 4% who said a similar thing about Apple’s iPad 2 the week before it launched earlier this year. What’s more, 26% of these Kindle Fire buyers say they have delayed or put on hold plans to buy an iPad as a result of Amazon’s product.

Before everyone gets excited and starts calling the Kindle Fire an iPad-killer, though, RBC Capital Markets is still predicting that Apple will sell 50 million of its tablets in its next fiscal year, and 65 million the one after that. What’s exciting about the Kindle Fire is that it may be carving a mostly-new market for more affordable tablet devices, rather than cannibalising the existing one.

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