Amazon announces new Kindle

Amazon's e-reader, the Kindle, has today received a makeover, with a new, slimmer range announced.

The Kindle, one of the first e-reading devices to hit the market, still remains one of the most popular e-reader devices on the market, although in recent times has become overshadowed by hot new tablet devices including Apple's iPad, which allow users to read e-books and do much more despite being priced higher.

But Amazon hopes the latest makeover -- which will see the Kindle become 21 percent smaller, 15 percent lighter, have up to one month's life of battery use and double the storage from the previous iteration -- will keep the device attractive to those seeking a quality e-reader without the high price tag of a tablet device.

Other features include improvements on the device's 6-inch e-Ink screen, quieter page turn buttons, the ability to share meaningful passages with friends and family over Twitter or Facebook, an improved PDF Reader, updated web browser and new Text-to-Speech capabilities. Users can also purchase a new leather cover which features a reading light to allow you to read the screen.

And in a first for Kindle devices, Wi-Fi connections are now supported alongside 3G connections, with users able to select from a Wi-Fi only edition of the Kindle or a Wi-Fi and 3G capable model.

The updated Kindle models will begin shipping to around 140 countries from August 27, with pre-orders for the Wi-Fi model (US$139) and 3G-capable model (US$189) now being taken.

Amazon's new Kindle e-reader (Credit: Amazon)

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MR_Candyman said,
What would be the purpose of a wifi version if the 3g connection on these things is free anyways?

Amazon's free 3G is very slow. Using wifi will likely to be faster and use less battery power.

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Maysky said,
Amazon's free 3G is very slow. Using wifi will likely to be faster and use less battery power.

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I dunno about that, all my books download in a matter of seconds. It is purely a way to save money.

Maysky said,

Amazon's free 3G is very slow. Using wifi will likely to be faster and use less battery power.

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Sounds like Amazon is worried about the recently-launched (Monday, in fact) Augenus Gentouch wireless Android-powered MID (the Gentouch includes access to the Android Market, and thus the free Kindle for Android); unfortunately for Amazon, the Gentouch is available today (at Kmart), while the wifi Kindle won't be available until late August.

Augenus Gentouch: http://www.augenus.com/indexhome.html/GENTOUCH.html

Of course not, reading from an LCD screen is terrible. The kindle is not competing with this device. Barnes & Noble released a wifi-version of the Nook just a month ago at $149... perhaps they're competing with them?

Evolution said,
Of course not, reading from an LCD screen is terrible. The kindle is not competing with this device. Barnes & Noble released a wifi-version of the Nook just a month ago at $149... perhaps they're competing with them?

And the Kindle (new version) has what kind of screen?

And besides, most flat-panel PC displays are LCDs (including my 23" and Mom's 24") and neither of us have any issues.

Lastly, even if the Kindle *does* have a better screen, just looking at format issues alone, Gentouch well and truly trumps the Kindle and Nook by being compatible with Kindle format, via Kindle for Android, Nook format via Nook for Android, PDF, etc., for a mere $10 premium over either Nook *or* Kindle. With a Gentoucch, you're not trapped into taking along two (or even three!) e-reader devices (Nook, Kindle, and a MID for documents in other formats), so, in practice, a Gentouch would cost less than the very real possibility of having to buy both.

Evolution said,
Of course not, reading from an LCD screen is terrible.

I've read on both. I find it incredibly easy to read text on an LCD - especially with ClearType. Maybe you are defective?

PGHammer said,

Sounds like Amazon is worried about the recently-launched (Monday, in fact) Augenus Gentouch wireless Android-powered MID (the Gentouch includes access to the Android Market, and thus the free Kindle for Android); unfortunately for Amazon, the Gentouch is available today (at Kmart), while the wifi Kindle won't be available until late August.

Augenus Gentouch: http://www.augenus.com/indexhome.html/GENTOUCH.html


I never knew about the gentouch before and would like to know where online I could buy one

I doubt however Amazon is too worried about it competing

Neb Okla said,

I've read on both. I find it incredibly easy to read text on an LCD - especially with ClearType. Maybe you are defective?

I for one can't read for hours on end from an lcd as efficiently as I can from paper and there are many people like me.

The kindle uses an e-ink display, so it only requires power to change pages and check for updates. It's battery lasts for weeks and is just as clear inside as it is in direct sunlight.

MR_Candyman said,
What would be the purpose of a wifi version if the 3g connection on these things is free anyways?

Amazon charges for data if you download content abroad, so Wifi gets around that (obviously) and you don't need a PC (Which you would if abroad and you want to avoid the download charge).

Been toying with the idea of a kindle for some time, sounds like a great opportunity to get one, so cheap now as well.

spenser.d said,
nook > Kindle for sure, but this looks like a nice update

I can't stand slow page turns, which the Nook is known for. Not to mention the nook is heavier.

Evolution said,

I can't stand slow page turns, which the Nook is known for. Not to mention the nook is heavier.

Actually page turning has been sped up quite a bit as long as about two firmware updates ago (I think in the Feb. firmware release). And heavier? The thing weighs damn near nothing.

Not too exiting for me - since I'm planning to get one of those graphite DX's soon. But does anybody have any idea whether wifi will be incorporated into the DX? Sucks that they'd release the new DX several weeks before then announce the new Kindle with wifi included. It'd be nice to have both on the larger device.

I think for the price it would be rather nice to have a go. My Dad has a Sony e-reader and absolutely loves it. My only negative feelings are what are the book prices going to be and not being able to pass it along to someone else after you're done reading it.

TRC said,
They should really get rid of the stupid keyboard.

and do what exactly? onscreen keyboard on e-ink isn't the nicest thing in the world... sometimes button keyboards are nice, and if you dont like it there are other devices out there

neufuse said,

and do what exactly? onscreen keyboard on e-ink isn't the nicest thing in the world... sometimes button keyboards are nice, and if you dont like it there are other devices out there

Why does an ebook reader need a keyboard at all? They've done fine without them for years.

i11usive said,
Aw crap!!! I just bought the old one for my missus for her birthday .. arrived today! *Sigh*

At least you have 30 days to return it. Just enjoy it for the month then return and get new one.

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