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Customer Review

4,541 of 4,679 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Facts to Consider when Buying This Kindle Instead of Others, September 29, 2011
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This review is from: Kindle, 6" E Ink Display, Wi-Fi - Includes Special Offers (Graphite) (Electronics)
First off, I received my new Kindle this morning. I previously owned the Kindle Keyboard, but actually really didn't like the keyboard or the way the buttons were pressed together. I'm not a fan of touch screens so I bought this one.

There are a few things to know about this particular Kindle that can help you decide if it's right for you...

Here is a list of things to know about this Kindle.

1. You'll be using an onscreen keyboard with the 5-Way Controller. This is not a problem for setting up WiFi and a little writing but if you are an avid note-taker or do a lot of writing with your Kindle, you might want to opt for the Kindle Keyboard.
2. NO AUDIO - If you are planning on listening to audiobooks, Mp3s, or Text to Speech on your Kindle, this is not the device for you. There is not even a headphone jack, so there is absolutely no audio support.
3. 2GB! This device has 2GB of storage, which is half of all the others... if you seriously need to keep over 1,400 books or so on your Kindle, you should opt for one of the others, all of which have 4GB. I only keep a hundred or so books on mine and the rest are up in the Amazon Cloud waiting for convenient download.
4. There's no 3G version but the WiFi works just fine.
5. There is a shorter battery life. Amazon reports the battery life is only one month of reading, compared with the others that clock in at two months. If you are going to be away from electricity for over a month, first of all RESPECT!, second of all, you may want a Kindle that has the 2 month battery life.
6. It's lighter than all the other versions. It weighs in at just under 6oz (170g). The closest competition is the Kindle Touch which is about 7.5oz.
7. It has 5 buttons on the face at the bottom. In the middle is the big 5-Way Controller button as found on other Kindles. There are two small buttons on either side of this. On the left side, from left to right are the "Back" button and the "Keyboard" button. The "Back" button is the same as on other Kindles. The "Keyboard" button calls the onscreen keyboard onto the screen. On the right side of the 5-Way Controller are (again, from left to right) the "Menu" button, and the "Home" button. The "Next Page" and "Previous Page" buttons are the same as on other Kindles.
8. Because of the above 5 buttons, I find it much easier to use than the Kindle Keyboard. On the Kindle Keyboard, the "Back" button was right below the 5-Way Controller, and I accidentally hit it on more than one occasion.
9. On the bottom there is only the mini-USB port, the charging light, and the On-Off Button.
10. There are not a whole lot of covers available for this Kindle yet. (Amazon's won't be available until the end of October.)

As for reading, and as a pure reading device. It is awesome... in fact, without the keyboard, audio, and other features I don't need. This is actually the best one for someone like me who just wants to read.

I've already successfully transferred my library, downloaded books over WiFi, and borrowed library books through the Overdrive Library eBooks System. My only small point of dissatisfaction is that there are so few good covers and accessories right now (though there ARE some available that look pretty good).

All in all, I believe this is the BEST of all the Kindles currently available. Only consider others if you:
a. Really want the touch screen version.
b. Need audio.
c. Need 4GB
d. Need a big Kindle DX.
e. Take a lot of notes or do a lot of writing that requires a keyboard.
f. Prefer the design of another version.
g. Need more than a month's battery power.

Hope this helps someone make a good decision!

(Brief update: I love this Kindle, but right now the scarcity of good, inexpensive covers for it is a little troubling. The Amazon made leather one with light won't be available until November or so and there are currently no inexpensive ones to use in the interim. I'll just have to use it gently for a month or so.)

Update on cases:
I mentioned this in the comments section, but I'll repeat it here for people who can't yet find a good case -

Checking the specifications for the Kindle, Nook Touch, and Kobo:
Nook Touch
6.5 x 5 x 0.5 inches
Kobo Reader
6.5 X 4.5 inches
Kindle (4th Generation)
6.5 x 4.5 x 0.34 inches

It looks like the Kobo is about exactly the same size and the Nook Touch is slightly longer. If you need a case but can't find one that you like yet, it may be worth a little hunting to see if a nook or kobo case or cover might fit the bill.
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Showing 1-10 of 110 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Sep 29, 2011 7:33:19 PM PDT
Ed says:
Nice review. Thank you.

Posted on Sep 30, 2011 6:12:34 PM PDT
This is a good review, I'd keep in mind the battery will run out twice as quick if you use it twice as much as they expected. They actually measure battery life in page turns, since if wifi is off, the only time the battery is drained is a page turn. Some people read much, much faster then normal, and would run the battery out quicker. i get almost a month without charging.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 30, 2011 8:44:12 PM PDT
J. Ts says:
Yes, that's a great point. It's also easy to forget to charge these devices with really long battery lives. Thanks!

Posted on Oct 1, 2011 1:07:59 PM PDT
Will says:
I understand the new generation of kindles all come with special offers. Do you find that to be intrusive?

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 1, 2011 4:31:09 PM PDT
J. Ts says:
They don't show up when reading at all. One type is a screensaver, the other is a small banner at the bottom of the "Home" page. Neither are a problem.

Actually, I like them. One of the recent offers was $1 for a Mystery novel (choosing from a list of 100). The other was $5 off any $10 or more purchase. When I saw them, I turned on the WiFi. When you accept an ad, it emails itself to you with instructions on how to use it.

Long answer short - If the ads continue like this, they'll end up paying for the Kindle... Right now the most common screen saver I get is a cool looking ad for the new Shakespeare movie "Anonymous".

Posted on Oct 1, 2011 6:34:02 PM PDT
Retta says:
Thanks for the thorough review. I already have a K3 and wondered what the few buttons along the bottom of this new were. I was hoping someone would mention it!

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 2, 2011 1:44:02 AM PDT
Will says:
Thank you for answering my question and for your thoughtful review! I think I will get the kindle touch, since I like the text-to-audio function and the longer battery life. And the special offers don't seem to be so bad at all. Now just need to wait till November...

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 2, 2011 12:15:13 PM PDT
J. Ts says:
L. Silva - Also, in the "button" department, the power button is one you push instead of a slide like the others. Glad I could be useful.

Will - Yeah, the audio functions like text-to-speech were the biggest temptation for me...

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 2, 2011 6:38:52 PM PDT
Do the screensavers [special offers] decrease the battery life??

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 3, 2011 10:17:29 AM PDT
J. Ts says:
I don't think so. Seems to be just a static image of something sponsored instead of one of Emily Bronte or some other author (as on the non-sponsored). I haven't had mine long enough for the charge to even decrease a little yet though!
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