How to Use Micro SD Cards to Increase Storage on Fire Tablets

Amazon Fire tablets are great entertainment and productivity devices. However, one downside is that they come with limited internal storage. The entry-level Fire 7 tablet only has 16GB or 32GB of built-in storage. Even the top-tier Fire HD 10 Plus packs 64GB maximum.

Thankfully, all Fire tablets allow expanding storage via micro SD cards. You can add up to 1TB of additional space depending on model. This guide will teach you everything about using SD cards to boost storage on your Fire tablet.

What Size microSD Card Should You Get?

Amazon Fire tablets support micro SD cards up to 512GB or 1TB depending on model. The latest 10th generation and Fire HD 10 Plus support up to 1TB cards. Older models cap out at 512GB.

Here are recommended SD card sizes to get:

  • 128GB – Best balance of price and storage for most people
  • 256GB – Ideal if you store lots of HD videos and games
  • 512GB – Only for Fire HD 8, HD 10, and HD 10 Plus tablets
  • 1TB – Maximum supported on latest Fire HD 10 Plus

I recommend getting SD cards from reputable brands like SanDisk, Samsung, Lexar, or Kingston. Avoid unknown cheap brands selling 1TB cards for too low prices on Amazon. Those are likely fake cards that lie about capacities.

Get SD cards rated UHS-I U3 A2 for best performance. The A2 rating means it can run apps, while U3 ensures fast data transfer speeds.

How to Insert a microSD Card in Fire Tablets

Inserting a micro SD card into Fire tablets is easy. Here are the steps:

  1. Turn off your Fire tablet by holding the power button and tapping “Power off”
  2. Locate the micro SD card slot on the tablet’s edge protected by a plastic flap
  3. Open the flap gently with your fingernail
  4. Insert the SD card with gold contacts facing down and gently push until it clicks
  5. Close the plastic protective flap
  6. Turn on your Fire tablet

Once inserted, the tablet will automatically detect the new SD card. A “Unsupported Storage” notification may appear asking you to format it. Just tap on the notification and follow prompts to format and set up the card.

Choosing Between Portable vs Internal Storage

When first inserting an SD card, FireOS will ask whether you want to use it as portable or internal storage. Here’s the difference:

Portable Storage

  • Manually transfer photos, videos, and other files
  • Can’t install apps on the SD card
  • Safely remove card anytime

Internal Storage

  • Tablet treats card as built-in storage
  • Apps can be installed on the card
  • Improves privacy as card is encrypted
  • Can’t remove card often

I recommend portable storage if you’ll be transferring the SD card between devices. Choose internal storage to fully merge the card with built-in storage for flexibility.

How to Set Up SD Card as Internal Storage

Follow these steps to format SD card as internal storage:

  1. Insert SD card and tap “Internal Storage” when prompted
  2. Tap “Format” to confirm reformatting the card
  3. Wait for formatting to complete
  4. Tap “Move Content” to transfer apps and data now or later

Once set up, FireOS will automatically install apps and store data on SD card when internal space is low. You can also manually move apps under Storage settings.

Transferring Files from PC to SD Card

To transfer photos, videos, and other files from your Windows/Mac PC to the Fire tablet’s SD card:

  1. Insert SD card into tablet and set up as portable storage
  2. Connect Fire tablet to computer via USB cable
  3. Open file explorer on computer and navigate to SD card
  4. Drag and drop files to copy them over
  5. Safely eject the SD card before disconnecting tablet

This allows quickly transferring media files without using cloud services or the tablet’s display.

Tips for Using SD Cards on Fire Tablets

Follow these tips for seamlessly using SD cards to expand storage on your Fire tablet:

  • Test read/write speeds of card after inserting into tablet using free apps
  • Encrypt SD card if using as internal storage for privacy
  • Use file manager apps like ES File Explorer to easily access and manage SD card contents
  • Back up important data on SD card to other locations in case card fails
  • Get a USB-C card reader to directly access tablet’s SD card from any computer
  • Don’t remove SD card randomly if set as internal storage to avoid corruption


While Fire tablets skimp on built-in capacity, the micro SD card slot makes it easy to add lots of affordable storage. Cards up to 1TB are supported. Make sure to get reputable high-speed SD cards. Setting up portable or internal storage is straightforward. With set up guides provided, you can seamlessly expand storage for apps, games, media files, photos, and more. Follow the usage tips provided for reliably running apps off the SD card.