3,885 of 3,972 people found the following review helpful
Excellent slimmed-down version,
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This review is from: Kindle, 6" E Ink Display, Wi-Fi, Graphite (Electronics)On the latest Kindle the screen remains unchanged and is excellent, most significantly in sunlight. The most striking difference is the size of the Kindle - significantly smaller than the keyboard version and now looking more like the Sony eReader range. I don't need a keyboard - although you have access to a virtual one on the Kindle screen but only can only slooooowly select keys using the 5-way control on the front of the Kindle. I much prefer this compact, very light, form. The finish is also better in my opinion. I prefer the silver casing to black, and certainly the white available in US earlier-generation Kindles. Another flagged improvement is the speed of `virtually' turning the page. There is a minimal improvement but it's still not possible to repeatedly press the next page button without the Kindle quickly falling behind.
Lower specs, excluding the keyboard which I think is a plus, is the anticipated time before the Kindle needs to be recharged - one month instead of two. One month is fine for me. The storage is also reduced but Amazon archives all your purchases in the Cloud so when you have Wi-Fi access you can download them just in case you're running out of storage space. As the Kindle will hold more than 1,000 books this is not likely to be an issue. Further, listening to music and audio books is no longer an option on the Kindle (which has no speaker) so the storage won't be clogged with large sound files. Storage space is not critical therefore. I also find that with Wi-Fi pretty ubiquitous these days that the loss of a 3G is fine. Where you're likely to struggle finding a Wi-Fi access point you're also likely not to be in a 3G area but can still rely on a slower GPRS or Edge mobile download. It is possible to connect the Kindle to a PC and move e-books to it via the USB cable so the Wi-Fi less have a work around (but you need Wi-Fi at least once to activate it on receipt).
Overall this is a refreshing update of the Kindle focussed on the key features of an e-reader - a good screen/size ratio, lightweight form, ease of downloading new books, and an excellent screen. And thanks to the focus on core features it's cheaper than earlier versions. Recommended.
Update: If you're considering investing in a new Kindle the Kindle Touch which, as the name suggests, comes with a touch screen might be worth a look. This adds the functionality of a touch screen, innovative searching of content in addition to a standard dictionary, more storage space and a longer battery life. It's currently £20 more than the standard Kindle and available late April 2012. Check out the Amazon Kindle comparison page.
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Showing 11-20 of 133 posts in this discussion
In reply to an earlier post on 5 Oct 2011 20:24:12 BDT
Miss Fagan says:
Thank you so much for this information, really appreciate it. This has helped me a lot with my decision, and it looks like I will go for the new kindle. Cheers.
Posted on 5 Oct 2011 20:41:10 BDT
Mrs. Susan Clarke says:
Superb review Mr Ell. Theres only one problem with it........its made me insanely jealous that i havent got mine yet! Hopefully it will arrive by Friday. Did you order any accessories with it?
Posted on 5 Oct 2011 21:44:48 BDT
Great review - been thinking of buying my bookworm daughter a Kindle for Xmas, and will definitely get her this one - not only is it cheaper but I am delighted that some of the features have been 'lost' as I really only want it to be an e-reader for her (she's only ten)!
In reply to an earlier post on 5 Oct 2011 21:46:42 BDT
Paul S. Ell says:
No, I didn't order accessories. I have a plug-in USB power adapter which the Kindle can use. I'm reluctant to buy a cover because it adds weight to a device which is supposed to be as light at possible. Also, the Amazon ones at least are madly expensive, and not yet available. I might buy a slip on case to be used when carrying the Kindle around but not reading it. This version of the Kindle is ascetically far more pleasing than earlier ones. As I said in the review, more like to Sony e-readers. Although it's not quite up to the iPad standard it is a bit of a shame so wrap it in a case.
Posted on 6 Oct 2011 00:21:53 BDT
el nino says:
well after reading the reviews i've just put my order in,so i hope i'm lucky and get mine before the stated date.as for some talk over the merits of 3g and wi-fi it wont really bother me as i'll down load any books i'll want while i'm in the house.
Posted on 6 Oct 2011 13:23:33 BDT
Mrs. K. Henderson says:
Hi Paul (and everyone else of course) I'm thinking of joining the Kindle gang but know nothing at all about them. I have no idea which one to buy even though this one has great reviews. What would you recommend and how do you find the book prices? Can anyone help me please? Apoligies in advance if I sound thick haha
In reply to an earlier post on 7 Oct 2011 13:41:11 BDT
Paul S. Ell says:
If you want a straightforward, compact, e-reader at a go price point I think the Kindle I've reviewed is the one to go for. You will need though a recent computer with a USB 2.0 port to charge the Kindle (the cable is included withe the Kindle). The computer will need internet access to download e-books which can then be moved to the connected Kindle. Ideally you'll also have access to a wireless network which means you can download e-books direct to the Kindle without having to connect it to a computer. Also a USB plug adapter - which simply plugs into a standard mains electric socket - is very useful which means you don't have to rely on a computer to charge the Kindle. To complicate matters slightly, if you have the mains adapter and wireless access you don't need a computer at all - wireless downloads the books and the Kindle is powered through the adapter.
If you think you'll wish to add notes as you read an e-book one of the Kindles with a keyboard is a better bet as it is much easier to use this than the virtual one which comes with the new Kindle. One the new Kindle you push the keyboard button - one of the four small buttons on the front of the Kindle - and use the 5-way central button to select letters from a keyboard which appears on the screen. It's a pretty cumbersome process. The keyboard Kindles are larger and I don't think look as good as the new Kindle.
If you don't have internet access at all - either wired or wireless - you need to go with the 3G Kindle with keyboard which will allow you to download books using the mobile phone data network. This also works in many countries across the world.
Sorry if this is over complex but I wanted to cover all options.
On e-book prices I find Amazon to be fairly consistent in offering the lowest prices and greatest range of books. I've used a number of Sony eReaders in the past, from the first version released only in the US which I purchased there buying books from the US Sony Reader store. Prices for e-books were fairly high. When Sony released the eReader in the UK books were, and are, available from Waterstones but rarely are prices cheaper than from Amazon. I haven't invested in recent Sony eReaders and haven't used my own eReader for more than a year. Overall, sometimes e-books are either the same price or even more expensive than traditional books which seems counter intuitive as production and distribution costs are lower, and you don't actually get the physical book - something I miss although by bookcases are straining under the burden of books. However, e-book costs reflect payments to authors, typesetting etc that are associated with the paper version justifying to an extent their comparable costs. While Amazon uses a specific format for its e-books - so if Amazon disappeared it's possible the format would die - this seems unlikely. A big plus with the Amazon is that it has software which will allow you to read e-books purchased from them on PCs, Macs, iPhones, Android Phones and iPads. I have an iPad and find the reading experience on that using the Kindle app very good, particularly in low light conditions. Outdoors, and particularly in sunlight the small size of the Kindle and its reflection-proof screen and long battery life make it a far more practical device to use.
Sorry that this has developed into something of a rambling response...
In reply to an earlier post on 7 Oct 2011 13:51:47 BDT
Diana Frankland says:
I've just read through the reviews as I'm an ignorant first time buyer of a Kindle. I'm still not sure what 3G is but I vaguely understand wi'fi (though I don't know if I've got it). I thought your reviews were superb and helped me much more than the chap in the Carphone Warehouse as he clearly didn't need a 70 year old asking stupid questions! Silly boy - if he's on commission. Anyway, I'll be making my purchase online but have wondered if the variety of books available is the same as on the Amazon book site?
Thank you for taking the time to teach.
In reply to an earlier post on 7 Oct 2011 16:26:30 BDT
Alfred the Great says:
Do any of these Kindles have the ability to send/receive emails
In reply to an earlier post on 7 Oct 2011 19:17:20 BDT
Last edited by the author on 7 Oct 2011 19:25:35 BDT
The new Kindle is charming, but I am sticking to my 3G because I get my daily newspaper on my Kindle and the 3G means I can receive the paper almost anywhere above ground in London or in the world.
Travelling on a train, in the Japan (where the free wifi in hotels is mostly by lan cable) and last month on Mafia Island and Zanzibar in Tanzania, where wifi was rare and often very slow, I could turn on my Kindle "wireless" and receive my paper or any book I wanted.
I also send to my 3G Kindle, as a word document, my travel itinerary and travel documents (including e-tickets), which is very useful as back up. I haven't tried to send e-mails from the Kindle, but you can receive e-mails sent to your Kindle email address.
It is a real pity that the Kindle is being marketed to the young and hip as it is particularly useful for those of more advanced years or with disabilities. (It was very useful when I broke my left arm) My 72 years old sister in law loves the one I gave her. The choice of font size means she can chose an enlarged font for her fading sight and the lightness makes it much easier to hold in her arthritic hands. The technology is straightforward, the helpline is patient and helpful and it is almost impossible to mess it up so badly it can't be sorted fairly easily. 3G is what mobile phone networks use, but there is no additional cost to using it on the Kindle. If you don't know if you have wifi, the 3G would be best for you.
Not all Amazon books are available on Kindle, but there are new ones addd every day, including some surprising titles (The Soul of the White Ant, a delightful book written about African termites in the 1920's recommended to me in Tanzania and purchased over the 3G as we spoke). I find the Kindle books I want mostly cheaper and the ones out of copyright are often free. Have a look on the Amazon website in the Kindle Store to see if what they have suits you.
I love the flip cover which lets me prop the Kindle on the breakfast table to read the paper (or one of the 500+ books it has somehow acquired), but I can see that the new one is so pretty covering it would seem a pity.