Aug 19, 2012

Say Hi to My Kindle

During my last trip to Boston, my friend asked me to bring home a Kindle for her. Up till then the humble e-Reader had never crossed my mind as a device for me, I'm more of an iPad person, I said.
However, witnessing my iPad friends buying the tablet just for games and Facebook reassured me that wasting my life in front of a slab of retina display is the last thing I wanted. I began re-thinking about what I really wanted in a mobile device.
So during that trip, I bought home not one, but two Kindles.

Hello, gorgeous!
So its functions are pretty basic, a menu with books you own, some dictionaries, and a folder holding all your "clippings" - quotations, annotations, and highlights from passages. It has Wi-Fi and a very down-to-earth browser called Experimental which allows you to purchase books from Amazon, send tweets, and download offers on the go.

Kindle's display is based on E Ink. The simpleton technology gives you static texts, tables, and figures on a white surface like real paper. It does not, however, support animation or video. Hence Kindle is all about studying, quite perfect for me!
As the display doesn't glare like an iPad or any LED mobile device (it is literally like paper), you can stare it for hours without feeling tired. Works great under bright conditions, even under the sun. However, as it does not have any light source, you can't read when it's dark. Amazon does sell a Kindle sleeve with reading lights for $39.99 + taxes.
You can switch font styles, sizes, and alignment to suit your age. I imagine Dad would enlarge the fonts to 30 so he won't have to hold them 5 feet away from his presbyopia glasses.

Photographs are good as long as it's not too detailed. It only supports black and white, though.

Quite easy to hold on to with a flip and return button on both sides of the reader.

I think the best thing about it is it fits into my white coat pocket. It killed off many sleepless hours during call nights, boring conferences and meetings, and filled my elevator minutes with valuable reading.
I'd say it's a steal for $79. The fact that Amazon sells a wide variety of Kindle edition books slightly cheaper than the paperback edition makes it a dollar saver in the long run. Amazon features free ebooks daily as well, follow @freedailybooks for updates.
One question I get asked the most, and prohibiting people from buying one, is that it doesn't feel like a real book.
Well, for those who love holding a real book caressing the spine, smelling the ink and paper, annotating around the borders, and doing origami with the pages - this is not for you. For those who finish a book leaving it brand new (reselling it as an excellent new copy sometimes), the Earth benefits from cutting down less trees. Of course you won't achieve your dream of a wall of books, but believe me, even if you do, you won't have time for all of them. They will only sit and become homes for silverfishes.


SleeplessInKL said...

Argh! I've been drooling for one as well, purely for reading. How do you get around the book purchases? I heard Amazon requires a credit card with US address.

JYSim said...

I use Dad's supplementary which is registered in Malaysia and it worked just fine.

CY said...

oh i didn't know they featured free books daily! thanks for sharing!!
you can create multiple kindles under the same account too and share books between them =) very economical for friends and family who are interested in similar genre of books! makes a good gift too =D

JYSim said...

I didn't know you could do that. Interesting. So I can have 5 Kindles and when I buy a book all 5 gets it?

CY said...

Yes! there's a limit of up to 5 i think. everytime when u buy books and download to a kindle, the other kindles linked to it will get it too once the device is synced.

be careful though, at times when u r halfway reading a shared book a pop-up might come on saying that kindle has been updated that you have read a certain book till page 101 (on another kindle) and whether u want to update yr kindle to that page, just click no and no hell shall break loose.

JYSim said...

I understand. Page turning is the most power-consuming act right?

SleeplessInKL said...

I forgot to tell you I got 2 units of the basic model oredi -- 1 for myself, 1 for the kids. Love it, love it, love it!