Kindle 2: meh

Me, on Techradar:

Leaving aside the fact that the paperback book is pretty much perfect, Amazon’s device doesn’t do colour and you’re not going to use a $359 gadget to kill wasps, there are three big problems with it.

The first is that despite the redesign, it still looks like something Noddy and Big Ears would use. The second is that Amazon has removed some key features, making it less flexible than before. And the third is that it simply isn’t good enough when you compare it to other gadgets.

I thought using the full product name as per Amazon’s own listing – “Kindle 2: Amazon’s New Wireless Reading Device (Latest Generation)” – throughout the piece would be funny, but it seems I’m the only person who does.

I’m still really excited about e-books, but I don’t have any gadget lust towards this one at all.

9 thoughts on “Kindle 2: meh”

  1. You could get a laptop for the same price. I don’t understand why they’re so bloody expensive – them and the alternatives.

    I like the idea but until they become a LOT cheaper I’ll be sticking to old-skool paper books, thankyewverymuch. Or, alternatively, squinting at my iPhone screen reading them using Stanza

  2. I haven’t looked into the price in any detail but I’d imagine the screen takes a big chunk. Have you seen the Readius? That looks more like it :)

  3. They also need to address the issue of reading in the bath and make them waterproof and steamproof. I really want to see electronic books — I think they’re potentially far better than paper ones — but they’re a hell of a long way off of getting them right yet.

  4. I agree, although waterproof, steamproof ebooks are a long way away (and I expect will cost as much as waterproof, steamproof, shockproof laptops do compared to normal ones).

    I do think e-ink is brilliant technology, though – if you’re passing a biggish waterstones the Sony Reader tends to be out on display. Wouldn’t buy one, mind, but the display really is good.

  5. I am a very happy lady just now, having filled a bag’s worth of books at the Oxfam bookshop on Byres Road which will keep me busy for at least…a month. The random nature and tactile joy of that shop alone will keep me in the anti-ebook camp for a while.

  6. Totally, that shop is a thing of wonder.

    I’ve got an ongoing argument about ebooks with some journo colleagues: they’re quite excited about electronic books, but I’m convinced the future of the book is the book. Magazines and newspapers, on the other hand… a kindle costs the same as a year of the Guardian and Observer. Mix it up with your RSS, give it an interface like the New York Times Reader and you’ve got a really compelling alternative to dead tree newspapers. And it’d save me doing my back in every week with the recycling boxes.

    I’m talking about the kindle on the radio this morning btw, and I’d love to hear from anyone who actually wants one. Not to take the mick – I’m just wondering if I’m missing something here.

    Just out of interest, folks, would you ever consider an ebook reader? And if so, what for and why?

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