As standard, I’ll start out simple: the Paperwhite beats the Kindle.
When we think about the Kindle family, what we are dealing with is really a series of tablets that continues to grow and evolve in order to suit the needs of its customers. First, there was the Kindle and its successors, then the Kindle Fire built upon that idea as a simple to work with, Online-ready portable gadget. The Kindle Fire is an all-purpose life-style peripheral that encompasses The web, cultural output, social media plus much more and is arguably the best such device in its price range.
The Kindle Paperwhite, on the other hand, is a return to the simple, classic (some might say ‘noble’) intentions of that initial Kindle. The Paperwhite is definitely an eReader, nothing new, nothing less.
After a major amount of research (including all the usual writers, online threads and magazines for which you’re obviously knowledgeable about by now), I chanced upon the web site of blogger C.G.P Grey, who had written by far a really sophisticated, enlightening and customer-friendly review of this Paperwhite that I’ve read. I’ll quote it extensively here, but, if you are looking to buy a Paperwhite, I suggest you check out the whole blog. Grey says,
“I used to read a lot, but as I aged and gained responsibilities, books became less central to my life. When I moved to a new city with a poor local library that was just a little too far out of the way my habit of reading died a silent death – and it took more than a year before I even realized. Then, one day, it hit me: ‘I’ve forgotten about reading. I need to fix this’. My local library wasn’t going to move any closer to my apartment, so I looked into getting a Kindle and settled on the non-touch, D-pad version. Access to books was no longer a problem, and my reading went up. But not by a lot. Why? I loved my new Kindle and, reading my first book on it, The Diamond Age was a joy. But my optimal reading time is just before bed and, though the D-pad Kindle’s screen was great, its low contrast made night-time reading, even with an Anglerfish-style book light, difficult”.
I do believe we are able to all associate towards the dilemma above. So, what advantages does the Paperwhite have over its predecessors? Well, for a beginning, there’s the reading light. Grey states,
“The paperwhite has achieved what I thought impossible: an illuminated screen that doesn’t blast light in you eyes. The effect is as though there’s a magic lamp in the room that only shines evenly across the Paperwhite’s screen. In comparison the D-pad Kindle’s screen looks hopelessly low contrast with its dark gray text on light green-gray background.”
It’s true, the principle advantage this new Kindle has over its elders could be the screen. The best display is vital to a better eReader and, though almost everything else is tweaked and improved in practise (especially the Net connectivity) much of this would almost certainly have been improved anyway by the release of a basic upgrade.
However, we could say that the Kindle Paperwhite is more durable, faster and more intuitive than the previous Kindles and genuinely does represent an enhancement on its pedigree.
Elsewhere, the lack of the ‘page turner’ button appears like a step backward at first, especially if you see your Paperwhite like a spiritual successor to your bookshelf. This is mainly because the Kindle’s ‘page button’ was a perfect psychological replacement for the pleasure of a tangible page turn. It also doesn’t help of the fact that Paperwhite’s Touch Screen is slightly more responsive, hence, you may sporadically turn a page accidentally, but let’s not forget that physical readers (if they’re something like me, that is) frequently drop their books and thus lose their spot in it.
There are numerous other upgrades too. A terrific one, also identified by Grey, stands out as the counter that estimates just how much time is left on each chapter according to your aggregate reading pace. Now that’s improvement!