Wednesday, May 04, 2011

I got a Kindle... some thoughts including what I like and dislike

220411_ my Kindle

A couple of weeks ago I bought a Kindle... its the wi-fi only model (I didn't think the 3g version was necessary) and I have to say... I really like it.

Its a different beast from my iPad... and any comparison is just not fair. I think of it as my iPod for books. Let me explain:

The Kindle is an eBook reader... with some experimental functionality thrown in. It excels (in my opinion) in its main purpose - the storage and presentation of eBooks - just as an iPod (original / classic) excels (again, in my opinion) in the storage and presentation of digital music.

I don't use it for anything else... I don't send .pdf files to it or receive news or RSS feeds. I have my iPad for that... and it does that very well. I just use it for reading books... and have amassed 64 books on it to date... including the full Harry Potter series and the Lord of the Rings.

This is where it comes into its own... just as the iPod does for music:

030511_ Kindle comparison

Above is a comparison :: My Kindle vs 5 of the 64 books on it. For travel and for my daily commute... this is important for me. I am currently (and slowly) working my way through 7 books at the moment and I couldn't possibly take all 7 with me when I commute.

Other things I like about it include...
  • its weight - its light and a lot lighter than the iPad;
  • its screen - it can be read in full daylight unlike the iPad and it doesn't keep my brain active at night (I know this sounds like marketing hype but its true for me);
  • its size - it can be carried in the back pocket of my second-hand 501s or jean-jacket without any issue;
  • I don't consider the fact it doesn't feel like a book as an issue... I actually like the way it feels - I can easily read one-handed which is very useful on a packed train.

Now... its not all rosy. It's like me, it has its flaws...
  • I don't like the fact I can't change the wallpapers - you know me and my personalisation. I can jailbreak it to enable this... but I'd prefer not to. It should be a feature.
  • I would prefer colour - I'm so used to colour with my iPad that I miss it on my Kindle. I love wonderfully designed book-covers and 8-bit grayscale just isn't that good for covers.
  • I don't like the fact it I am charged to send stuff to it... but do appreciate the "free.kindle.com" email address that supersedes the charging address ("kindle.com"). I have no need for this charging address... and am unsure why I even have it?
In summary... I really like the Kindle 3 as a device. It compliments my iPhone / iPad nicely... just as my iPods do... and, as such, I would recommend it for folks who commute and wish to carry a number of books with them on their journey.

Tx
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