Amazon Announces The New Kindle Touch And Kindle Touch 3GWritten by John Thompson on September 28, 2011 · Filed under Tech
And we thought today was going to be all about Amazon’s new tablet! Au contraire, the e-ink Kindle is still very much with us, and it’s received a great update today as it enters the world of touch.
Gone is the physical keyboard reminiscent of the previous generation, and as a result the new model Kindle is 11% smaller than the last. It’s also a little bit lighter, shedding 8% of its weight.
The new generation e-ink display is, according to Amazon, their most advanced, although given that they’ve had a year to improve on the last generation that shouldn’t come as too much of a shock.
All of the good things that the previous Kindle came with are still there, too. You will still get insanely good battery life thanks to that grayscale e-ink display, and it will still hold thousands of books on the device. So many in fact that the actual number is hugely insignificant as you will probably never reach the limit. Also, you will still be able to take advantage of 3G without a data plan in sight, which comes in handy if you’re stuck away from home without a network connection.
The 3.5mm headphone jack, USB port and power switch are all on the bottom of the unit to maintain a clean look across the rest of the device, and the silver finish really sets it apart from the previous generation’s black, plastic casing.
When you want to turn a page, you will be able to do so using special touch zones on the screen. Tapping anywhere on the right hand side of the screen will go forward one page; tapping anywhere on the left will take you to the previous page. If you tap in the centre of the display then the on screen menu will appear. It seems simple enough, but it will be interesting to see how easy it is to accidentally toggle some of these areas when you’re holding the device at a certain angle.
A less welcome addition to the new generation Kindle is a series of “offers” that will make their way on to your screensaver. They aren’t really offers at all, they’re ads, no matter how much you try to cover up the fact. Amazon has previously experimented with ad-based devices on the previous generation model, selling it at a cheaper price than the traditional model, but it seems as thought they’re set to take advantage of an additional revenue stream here. Personally, I’d rather have any screensaver of my choosing and pay more for the device.
The new Kindle Touch and Kindle Touch 3G is priced incredibly competitively compared to other options which are on the market right now. In the US, you can buy a Touch for just $99, or $139 without ads, and the 3G model will sell for $149, or $189 without ads. No word on UK pricing as of yet, but that’s bound to creep out sooner rather than later. The new Kindles will be available from November 11th in the US.
Image Credit: The Verge