The Amazon Kindle
This Christmas, I was gifted the Amazon Kindle 3(the latest!!). The Kindle, in every way, is the iPod of books. Amazon recently reduced the Kindle’s to a significantly low $139(almost half the price of its predecessor). The Kindle 3 is not only cheaper then Kindle 2 but its even better. Kindle is not only a book-reader but also a music player, web browser, audio reader etc.
Reading on the Kindle is just as comfortable (if not more) as reading a normal book. The Kindle is thinner than the average book and far lighter. You don’t need to hold it apart like a book (and some of those tiny books have a really horrible binding which keeps snapping close!) which reduces hand strain for long reading. The size of the screen is about the size of a normal book’s page. The page-turning buttons are located on both sides of the device which is good if your a left-hander. You can adjust the font size from a wide selection of sizes(brilliant for those with weaker eyes) and best of all is the Text-to-Speech(If only every blind fellow had a Kindle; No more Braille).
The most amazing thing about the Kindle is the E-Ink technology. The E-Ink looks astonishingly like real paper. Best of all the E-Ink display does not require a back light like computer screens so you have no eye-strain. Just like reading real book. The e-ink screen does not require any power to maintain a particular screen hence the Kindle gets something like a 1 month battery life(I usually get around 3 weeks with some music and occasion wi-fi).
The Kindle has about 3 GB of memory available to the user. The average E-book is about 200 KB is size. So that’s space for 15,000 books (I dont think ill run out of it!). No more book stacks, no more messy cupboards. Best of all you don’t need to worry about which books to carry on a holiday; just take them all!
Music, Browsing etc
Along with reading books, the Kindle can also double up as a web browser and music player. Its far easier to browse on the Kindle than on PDAs and smart-phones. However a slow-refreshing screen and no colour makes browsing a little boring and dull. Wi-fi also uses battery pretty fast. Kindle is a pretty good music player and can play music while reading. However it can only play MP3 files. You can also plug-in a headphone.
At $139 the Kindle is just amazing. This device is the future of reading. There are thousands of classic books(pre 1913) that are free to download and this includes some of those great novels like Pride and Prejudice, Jules Verne’s, Mark Twain’s etc. It would be great if every kid in the world had a Kindle (do we need something like OLPC here?)!
For More info on Kindle:
Wikipedia – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kindle