Did your Fire tablet just de-register … again?

50_fireBack in April, there was a huge a problem with Fire tablets suddenly de-registering themselves. That issue predominantly affected the 8.9 Fire models.

There are multiple threads on the Amazon forums (such as the latest post on this thread), that indicates that the problem is back and it is affecting a lot more Fire tablets this time around. This time around, the problem seems to be involving the $50 fires and Fire tablets purchased for children that are running Freetime.

There are multiple descriptions of the devices spontaneously de-registering, profiles lost, and pins that will not work on the devices. Content, game progress and other data are also disappearing from the tablets. Many Fire owner owners have multiple Fires registered to their account and are reporting that it is the newer devices that are de-registering while the older ones are not. Some customers are also having a problem getting the devices to re-register when they try to correct the problem.

April’s de-registration issue was rumored to be a software glitch and this one may also be tied to a software update. One customer noted in this thread:

My two Fire Tabs for my young children spontaneously deregistered yesterday while they were charging, all content, progress and profiles appear to be lost and require you to start over completely. I put in a message to support and I have an email from them acknowledging this as a known problem on their end (server-side) and their only solution was to re-register and start over anew, losing any saved data and game progress. [Emphasis added]

It is also not clear from the forums if this problem also affects e-ink Kindles, particularly those for children. Some people are referring to problems with their children’s Kindle, but as people often interchange the name Kindle and Fire, I am not clear on which devices this problem actually affects.

More on this as additional info becomes available.

Related Update: Freetime update causes problems for children’s Fire tablets

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Amazon (Finally) Makes Announcement on Fire HD 8.9 deregister issue

fire_announcementAmazon has made an announcement about the deregistration and factory reset issue on the Kindle Help Community forum:

If you’re having trouble finding your photos, apps, or other content on your Kindle Fire HD 8.9”, please check your current registration status by swiping down from the top of the screen, selecting More, and then selecting My Account. If your device is not registered, tap the Register button and then enter your Amazon account information. After you register your device, you may need to download your content again. To learn more, go to  http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=201730090.

That link takes you to the Sync and Download Content to Your Kindle Fire page, There you will find instructions for syncing your content to your device:

To sync all content: With wireless connected, swipe down from the top of the screen to show Quick Settings, and then tap Sync.

The Sync Across Fire & Kindle Devices and Apps page implies that whether or not this restores bookmarks, highlights, etc.,  may depend on whether you have Whispersync enabled on your devices.

FYI: The Kindle Help Community forum is the one that is moderated by Amazon representatives.  It is not the same as the Amazon customer forums where customers comment and attempt to help other customers.

Related: Did your Fire tablet just de-register … again? June 17, 2016

Update to the Fire reset issue

fire HDXThere’s been a lot of interest in the post I wrote last night about the reports of owners of Fire tablets suddenly discovering their device had been deregistered without their knowledge.  I did try to call Amazon today, but had technical problems and got disconnected. Here’s the latest on the Kindle Fire deregister/factory reset issue that I can glean on the situation at this time:

Amazon is aware of the problem which seems to be particularly affecting the Fire HD 8.9″. This seems to be a bug or a glitch in software, at least as far as the 8.9′” devices are concerned. If you go to contact Kindle support, you will see the following:

help_screen_crop

(Click to enlarge)

The message under the ‘Call me now’ button says:

If you’re experiencing an issue with your Kindle Fire HD 8.9″, make sure your device is registered to your Amazon account. You can check your current registration status by swiping down from the top of the screen, selecting ‘More’, and then selecting ‘My Account’.

There was an estimate of  twelve minutes wait time to talk to Kindle support. That’s longer for Amazon in my experience. Given the long wait time, I think it is obvious that Amazon wants people to try to re-register their devices themselves before calling.

Several people reported the following response when they email or chat with customer service:

“We are sorry for the inconvenience you are experiencing. This is not we want our customers to experience.

In this regard, I would like to inform you that, the deregistration of your Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ Tablet is a known issue. As this is happening across many Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ tablets due a bug and our technical team is working to eliminate the bug.

This issue will be fixed in next 2-3 days. You need not worry about the content on your Kindle, as it will be safe in your cloud library and you can download them, once this bug is fixed in our server.

Thanks for your patience and understanding in this regard.”

One customer posted a different support response:

“Our servers were updated yesterday which seems to have introduced a bug causing devices to de-register, device which were connected to Amazon during this time got de-registered. But now the issue has been fixed.”

Some posters on the forums reported that they were instructed to re-register and then sync the device so that their content would reappear on the device. Others have reported being told that that they would have to manually download their books again. Some have reported being told that their libraries and apps would return within the next few days.

Many people have reported losing all their personal content, bookmarks, app data and email. Needless to say, a lot of people are upset with Amazon right now!

Amazon Kindle support definitely seems overwhelmed by the call volume. When I tried to  call earlier, I was transferred to a support rep, then the call was disconnected. Amazon did not call me back (generally,they do if that happens) and it took an hour and a half for the ‘Did I solve your problem’ email to arrive. The follow up email read like Amazon thought I hung on on them, so it may be an indication of just how widespread this issue is. If re-registering doesn’t work, you may need to try to call Kindle Support.

Safety PSA: If you have to call Kindle Support,use the ‘Contact us’ button on the help pages to initiate your call. There have been a number of scams perpetrated where people Google Kindle support and get the phone number for a fake site. They are then told they have to pay for support for their device. Amazon does not charge customers for customer service.

My own personal issue was with a Fire HD 6. I am not sure if the other Fire device resets are caused by the same problem, because other than the device setting resetting to default, most of my data is now showing on the device. I am still investigating the problem, but will probably wait until Monday to contact support again.

Do you have any info to share on the issue?

Update 2: Amazon has posted an announcement on this issue. Post here.

Related: Did your Fire tablet just de-register … again? June 17, 2016