Amazon Paperwhite Kindle Review

The postman dropped this through the mail slot today! My new Kindle Paperwhite, one day early. I have the original Kindle, and the Kindle Touch (well the kids have the Kindle Touches). How does this one compare?

  • much faster respond time, including typing
  • the display is way better
  • the UI changed a little, for the better
  • remember it does not have audio capability now, so it is purely a reading device

The only negative? My unit has a little scratch on the side edge on the rubber case. I am not going to exchange it for now obviously. Ignoring that, Highly recommended!

Click through the photoset below for many more pictures.

Amazon Paperwhite Kindle, a set on Flickr.

Kindle is still better than the iPad, for reading

Instructions on Power Up I love my iPad. There, I said it. It is with me 50% of the time. I consume media on it, Zite, Hulu, Netflix, Safari . I connect with it, Facebook, Twitter, Hootsuite, Mail. I write on it: iThoughtHD, iA Writer, Notability. I even read Kindle books on it using the Amazon Kindle app. But when it come to reading books, I still like the real Kindle ereader better.

The Kindle is better for five very important reasons:

  1. The e-ink display is wonderfully usable even in sunlight. A person who like to read, like to read outside. iPad does not work.
  2. The Kindle is light. The iPad is not very heavy, but the weight difference is significant when you are holding it to read for a long period of time.
  3. The Kindle battery last a long time.
  4. The Kindle is cheap(er) than the iPad. I would feel much less annoyed if I damage or lost my $99 Kindle Touch than my $700 iPad.
  5. The Kindle is more robust. It is much less likely to damage the Kindle then the iPad, when taking places.

What prompted me to write this blog post? I just came back from a short cabin camping trip for four days. I took my iPad and my Kindle Touch with me. I never once took out my iPad. I carried my Kindle everywhere, and caught up with a lot of reading. Sitting under a tree reading from the Kindle. Much better than the iPad.

I look forward to the anticipated new Kindle announcement next week. I am pretty sure I am going to get one. But I hope they bring back the hardware "next page" button.

Kindle Touch Review, from an iPad2 User

Executive Summary

  • If you are a serious reader, even if you own an iPad2, buy the Touch.
  • If you have a child who loves to read, buy the Touch.


I own an Amazon Kindle 1, aka the White Wedge. I used it quite a bit until the battery stop holding it's charge, and I got an iPad2. I do almost all of my book reading on the iPad2 using the Kindle App (how ironic). However the weight and the glare makes the reading experience sub par. One cool thing that I can do however is to flip between the Kindle App and iThought HD (a mindmapping app) to make notes while I read.

I pre-ordered the Kindle Touch when it was announced and it arrived yesterday. Charged it up in about an hour, and it is ready for use.


  • It is small and light, something that you can "throw" in your bag and have your books with you anywhere, bonus: much lighter than the iPad2
  • Page turn delay, which is always an issue with e-ink display, is not bad. Check out the video review I made, basically it is quick enough not to be bothersome.
  • The on screen virtual keyboard is also very responsive, meaning you can make notes easily right on the device


These are all minor issues:

  • The charging port, which is a micro-USB port, feels loose. I hope it does not break in the future
  • The feel of the plastic body is not great. I cannot tell why, but it just does not feel nice, especially compare to Apple products
  • Similarly, I which it comes in a sharper color, but then that's what cases and covers are for
  • no landscape viewing mode (at least for now) -- I do not find this to be a big problem, but people using the Kindle for reading personal PDF may find that an issue
  • When you click a "button", it does not "flash" -- so there is no visual feedback of a button being pressed. This is something that, say Apple, will never let go. They should either turn the button dark for a moment or have audible feedback, considering there will likely be a delay until the action is taken. (Note: The keyboard has this "flash/dark" feature. Only buttons in dialog boxes do not.

For Video Review click here to see my video on Amazon.

More Tips and Issue

Amazon Account Management

We use the Kindles within the entire family. One question is whether to use one single Amazon account for all content? Or split them up into adults vs kids accounts. This is a problem that would be solved if Amazon allows a easy transfer of content between accounts, but they do not. This is how the "book" metaphor breaks down. We are not allowed to give our books away. Since we may want to read each other's books, we choose to use a single amazon account. As a result, we need to:

  • disable auto-syncing so that two people can read the same book at different speeds without all devices automatically jumping to the furthermost point
  • use collections to organize a larger than necessary set of books

Listening to Music from iTunes

I am a Mac user and all my music are stored within the iTunes / Apple ecosystem, as DRM free Apple Lossless format files. the Kindle only support MP3s. So I need to convert any music that I want on the Kindle into MP3 files. iTunes has this feature but it may not be obvious.

Kindle Touch for Kids

The Kindle Touch is a great device for kids who read.

Final Thoughts

Summarizing the bigger points regarding the e-book and digital living marketplace:

  • Amazon should allow ownership transfer of e-books. This is solved in the music world by the removal of DRM in music files.

The New Cheaper Kindle, Well Played Mr. Bezos

[AMAZONPRODUCT=B003FSUDM4] I am an early adaptor and reader. Of course I have the original white, wedge, Kindle. In fact still prefer that design than the new slim design. Since the launch of the Kindle, to the point when Apple seemingly enters the race with the iPad and the iBook store, I bet a lot of people has prematurely declared the death of the Kindle. How they were wrong!

I admire Steve Jobs a great deal. I am a Apple Fanboy. But I also love Amazon. And lately I really started to appreciate Jeff Bezos. The phrase "slow and steady win the race" comes to mind. Of course the Amazon book pricing is going to end. Of course there will be competing devices to the Kindle. But Bezos hung in there, working up to the "mass market" Kindle event today slowly. This is the right move. And he took his time. Why not?

At the end it is about the reading experience. And you cannot beat the Kindle. Call me old school. When I read I don't want to be distracted. I don't want to flip over to check email or get ping on my twitter account on the iPad. I want to read. Lifehacker happen to run a story on the need to rebuild one's attention span and focus, referencing this How To Focus article. (While you are at it, skip over to the Onion for a laugh on this topic.)

I'll leave you with a little Jeff Bezos advice:

Amazon Kindle is still King

I am as much of an Apple Fan as the next person. I stood inline for six hours for my last iphone. But I don't have an iPad. And I have the original Amazon Kindle. Every time I pick up my Kindle and start reading, all doubts fade away. The device is easy to hold. The print is crisply readable. The book selections are great. Although thanks for Apple, the book prices have increased. I just want a cheaper Kindle (so I don't have to baby it as much), cheaper books, and a way to share books. The only real issue is that books has to be formatted correctly when there are diagrams.

We do not need a colored Kindle. We do not need a touch screen.

Time to eBay my Kindle

It's happening. As expected, iRex announced their iRex Digital Reader 1000 and 1000S today. Larger screen, wireless connectivity and touch screen for annotation. A 10.2 inch screen makes a big difference. So demand for the e-ink display is raising, price will be dropping, while Amazon claims that they are not going to release a new Kindle this year, current owners may want to prepare for eBaying the old one and get ready for the newer Kindle when it appears. iRex 1000

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