The Kindle is now available for a cheaper price and in different colour options. Click here for all specifications. Things have not changed much though, although the Kindle 3 now boosts 50% better resolution and comes in shiny graphitecolour for everyone who is not crazy about the old
The first-generation Amazon Kindle Ebook Reader weighed 0.29kg and offered a paper-like E-Ink display that keeps eyestrain at bay (as compared with the backlit displays of mobile phones and other mobile devices).
The first Kindle was readable in sunlight; it also offered long battery life and allowed you to look up words on the fly, as well as to take notes and highlight passages at will.
The Amazon Kindle 3 retains all of those capabilities, in a slimmer form (it’s 9mm thin). We like the thinner profile: the new device feels better in your hands, and we think it will be easier to pack. At just 0.28kg, the device’s weight is virtually the same as before.
The Amazon Kindle 3’s 600-by-800-resolution screen is the same size, measuring 6in; but now, packing the latest E-Ink technology, it gives you 16 shades of gray versus the four shades available on the original Kindle.
The improved screen technology is somewhat noticeable on text – we found text on the Amazon Kindle 2 slightly crisper and clearly tighter, with less ink-like bleed-in to the virtual page behind it. But the real difference is evident in images, which have far greater gradations.
The background of the screen itself has changed, too: before, the screen appeared to have a slight texture, almost like newspaper, but now the surface is completely smooth. As for the purported speed boost (pages supposedly turn 20 percent faster), we can’t say we noticed more than a subtle difference between Kindle 1 and Amazon Kindle 2 in turning pages. (We were not using identical content, though.)
Part of the reason for the elongation is that Amazon has devoted a bit more space to the keyboard, with some additional room between the keys and a more simplified, streamlined look (the keys are circular and the space bar is longer and better placed). This was a good move, as the keyboard is easier to use. As with the BlackBerry and other shrunken QWERTY keyboards, you enter text using your thumbs.
The Kindle 3 E-Reader’s keyboard comes in handy when entering notes and annotations while reading (they’re saved), keying in text for searches in the Kindle Store, and typing in URLs when surfing the Web. We also appreciated that the home button is now much more prominently displayed on the side of the device, right in the middle above the “Next page” button. Before, it was tiny and buried at the button of the keyboard.
10 reasons to buy the Kindle (from Crunchgear)
1. It’s great if you travel. If you travel, the Kindle is a godsend. I’m the kind of guy who stocks up books for even short trips, fully expecting to finish War and Peace, Notes from Underground, and four Clive Cussler novels on a plane trip from Pittsburgh to Columbus. With the Kindle you have a full complement of books available at any time.
2. You can put anything you want on it. You can easily email DOC, TXT, and PDF files to your own Kindle email address for conversion to the Kindle – but that costs 10 cents.
3. It looks great. The Kindle 2 is an amazing improvement over the Kindle 1. If every manufacturer took cues on build quality and product life cycles from Amazon, we’d all be better off.
4. It feels great. This new version has excellent button placement and is thin enough to cut cheese. It’s eminently portable.
5. Almost any book at any time. Except for a few esoteric reference books I’ve found just about everything I need on the Kindle store. As more and more publishers go ebook – and I think an iPhone Kindle reader will truly blow the last bottlenecks out – this excuse will become ineffective.
6. It works in inclement conditions. I was in Mexico with the wife and kids and I wanted to test the Kindle out near the pool. Three books later and I felt like the laziest high-tech maven in the world. The ladies next to me brought twenty softcover novels with them and all of them got wet and messy. The Kindle worked like a dream.
7. The bookmarking and highlighting systems are vastly improved. The original Kindle had two methods for note-taking: you could select text and add a note or you could add a book mark. The new system refines those considerably and adds visual feedback whenever you take a note.
8. The dictionary is now in-line. When you move to a word, its definition appears at the bottom of the page. If you wanted a definition before, you had to pop out to a separate page.
9. You can almost see and understand the illustrations in 16 greyscale shades. Note the “almost.” However, it’s better than 4 shades, which was abysmal.
10. It is the future. Sorry, it is. Amazon nailed the ebook and they’re going to own the space for the next few years. Maybe they’ll pull a Netflix and sell the software to OEMs, which is fine by me. But ebooks are what we’ll be reading while we rocket to Mars in 2050. Or we’ll have our robotic concubines read them to us.
Technical Specification (From Amazon.com):
Display: 6″ diagonal E-Ink® electronic paper display, 600 x 800 pixel resolution at 167 ppi, 16-level gray scale.
Size (in inches): 8″ x 5.3″ x 0.36″.
Weight: 10.2 ounces.
Storage: 2GB internal (approximately 1.4GB available for user content).
Battery Life: Read on a single charge for up to 4 days with wireless on. Turn wireless off and read for up to two weeks. Battery life will vary based on wireless usage, such as shopping the Kindle Store and downloading content. In low coverage areas or in 1xRTT only coverage, wireless usage will consume battery power more quickly.
Charge Time: Fully charges in approximately 4 hours and supports charging from your computer via the included USB 2.0 cable.
Connectivity: EVDO modem with fallback to 1xRTT; utilizes Amazon Whispernet to provide U.S wireless coverage via Sprint’s 3G high-speed data network.
USB Port: USB 2.0 (micro-B connector) for connection to the Kindle power adapter or optionally to connect to a PC or Macintosh computer.
Audio: 3.5mm stereo audio jack, rear-mounted stereo speakers.
Content Formats Supported: Kindle (AZW), TXT, Audible (formats 4, Audible Enhanced (AAX)), MP3, unprotected MOBI, PRC natively; PDF, HTML, DOC, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP through conversion.
Author: Kevin Logan
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