The West

E-commerce giant Amazon says its Kindle Fire has captured 22 per cent of the US market for tablet computers and the device is now "sold out", in a hint a new model is coming.

Amazon, which has scheduled a September 6 news event in California that's widely believed to be a launch for a new version of its tablet, has normally kept its sales data tightly guarded.

But the latest news suggests it has sold several million of the tablets in the US, which is expected to see 2012 sales of some 35 million. The Kindle Fire was launched in the fourth quarter of 2011.

"Kindle Fire quickly became the most successful product launch in the history of, and is the number one best-selling product across the millions of items available on Amazon since its introduction 48 weeks ago," Amazon said in a statement.

"Today, Amazon announced that Kindle Fire is sold out, and that in just nine months, Kindle Fire has captured 22 per cent of tablet sales in the US."

Apple's iPad has about two-thirds of the global market for tablets, and the company is expected to introduce a smaller version of it later this year.

The Kindle Fire costs $US199 ($A193), less than half the price of the cheapest iPad.

The West Australian

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