Saturday, July 31, 2010

New Kindle

I'm sure this is old news, but Amazon's site is lauding the new and improved Kindle. It's not really a surprise, since they were mighty quick to drop the Kindle's price on the heels of the iPad's bid for a piece of the ereader pie, and the third generation was being whispered about over the last few months. But it does mean that my parents may well become Kindle owners.

Allegedly the 3G is now truly global wireless, and indeed the coverage map is pretty convincing, although I will be interested to see feedback from users in Canada and Australia. The thing also has smokin' battery life (a month!), and is smaller and lighter than the previous version and packs more storage, all of which make Kindle ownership considerably more attractive. Alas, attractive is definitely in the eye of the beholder, because the look of the thing is relatively unchanged--personally, I don't much care for it, but it's not a substantial complaint. And it comes in black, so if the white one reminded you too much of school computers in the 1980's, your prayers have been answered.

Do I regret my Opus? No. Proprietary format is a real pisser for me--and I don't often find myself wanting ebooks where Amazon is the only or the cheapest option. My major complaint is the number of books I want to read that aren't available in any ebook format (philosophy books are hard to come by, but the ereader will do nothing to round out my steady diet of mysteries, because every mystery you ever wanted is an ebook). And Kobo's app provides a very similar experience to the Kindle app for Android--you can go from complete ignorance of a book's existence to reading it in less than 5 minutes, without a computer. All with the added benefit that I can read it on almost any ereader I want.

But my objections are those of an eensy beensy segment of the population (the ones who chuckled over Shifter's Random Geek Thought). The Kindle is a force to be reckoned with, for sure. I hope they put the new ones in Target so we can get a good look at them. And I can't wait to see the reviews....


Seeker said...

I am still hesitant about ebooks. I feel like one you have read it it just goes off into cyberspace. You have nothing going to the movies...enjoy..but then it is over. I like to pass books on to others, see them on my shelf, re-read some...I can see though if one travels a lot that they would be really practical.

Katy said...

Travels or moves. A third of my last move was books--more if you count the bookcases. When I lived in Brooklyn my entire tiny apartment was essentially smaller because there were bookshelves against any wall that had space. I have 8' bookcases that dictate my living space because they can only go in certain places.

And I will also say that never forgetting my book on a day when I have a doctor's appointment is priceless. No more 7-year-old Sports Illustrated! Now that I have 3 doctor's appointments many weeks, I've come to appreciate that aspect of the ereader more than ever.