On my way home from “the office” (not a regular location, more a state of mind) yesterday evening, I somehow found myself in Waterstones in Canary Wharf, just before closing time.
No idea how that happened.
As predicted, I went and bought myself a new Kindle Paperwhite. After some internal to-ing and fro-ing, I opted for the 3G version. Yes, I live in London, pretty much surrounded by wifi. But I’m not always in London, so built in free 3G is pretty handy. Especially when on holiday.
I used it quite a bit last night and have the following initial reactions:
- It’s a bit of a shock to the system to move from the fluid and responsive iOS on my iPhone and iPad to the pretty basic and sluggish (by comparison) OS on the Kindle. That said, it’s not built to do anything apart from reading books, so I’m not that bothered.
- The built-in lighting is gorgeous. Very easy on the eyes, especially in darkness. I read for a couple of hours last night and my eyes felt a lot less…knackered by the time I turned off the light.
- It’s nice and small, but not at all flimsy. It’s a good fit in the hand, but (I would imagine) easy to pop into a large pocket. I carried it around in my work bag today, snugly nestled between a Filofax and a laptop. I’ll definitely need to get a case for it at some point – none of the ones on sale at Waterstones were really that nice.
- It comes with a charging cable, but no plug. Which is fine for me, as I have one from my old Kindle. But I would think it’s a bit of a let-down for those buying their first Kindle. It comes with some charge, but not a full battery. More than enough to get it all set up, registered and running.
- It doesn’t have any physical buttons (except for the on/off switch, crazily located on the bottom of the device), so it’s all touch-screen interaction. I’m still getting used to the absence of forward/back buttons on the side. You tap on the screen. So…clean hands are a must. The on-screen keyboard isn’t as responsive as on an iPhone, but it works just fine. Setting up the connection with my home wi-fi took seconds.
Would I recommend it?
If you’re looking for a tablet or nifty multi-purpose device, this is not for you. It’s a single-purpose device that does what it’s designed to do very, very well. If you’re looking for a robust ereader that you can bring to the beach, read in the sun and not have to update with apps, this is for you.
If you don’t need 3G, then at £109, it’s a steal.
And now for a couple more photos. You can see that it’s significantly smaller than the older model. And based on Amazon’s information, it’s about 50g lighter too.