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) - With reports that


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is seeing higher than expected returns on its Kindle Fire and


(AAPL) - Get Apple Inc. Report

expected to launch the

next version of its iPad early next month

, tablets are again hitting the headlines, a trend which may affect consumers buying patterns.

On the

Barnes & Noble

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conference call yesterday, CEO William Lynch said he had heard about some "quality issues with our biggest competitor" on their new product. Many presumed this to be Amazon, with Lynch apparently referring to the Kindle Fire. Lynch said he heard of return rates between 15% and 25% for the tablet.

Amazon has not yet responded to

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request for comment on this story.

Apple sold a record 15.4 million iPads during its

recent fiscal first quarter

, up from 7.3 million in the same period last year.

Amazon's Kindle Fire has been subject to

intense scrutiny

since its launch last year.Problems with the web browser, feature set, access to daily deals, and personalization are amongst the Kindle Fire issues that have been raised. There have even been calls to

make the Kindle Fire more kid-friendly

, given the product's low price point ($199).

We want to know what readers think about their next tablet purchase. Will you be buying the next iPad, the

latest Nook tablet

the Kindle Fire, or something else? Let us know.

Interested in more on Amazon? See TheStreet Ratings' report card for

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Written by Chris Ciaccia in New York

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