Why would anyone want to forego the scent and feel of a new hardback?
Why would anyone want to forego the joy of entering a library or a bookstore amid the cobbled lanes of a market?
Why would anyone forego the nostalgia of holding on to a first edition, only to be reminded of carefree childhood days?
|Battery life||10 weeks|
These are the questions that cross my mind every time someone says the word “e-book”. The answer is always the same — convenience trumps nostalgia.
Technology makes us all adapt to new habits, new lifestyle choices and new modes of unwinding.
The new Kindle Paperwhite is my latest technological addiction.
For all the naysayers who have already denounced this review because for them, nothing beats the adventures of deep-diving into a hardback, hear me out.
What if I told you, you can store thousands of books, in this gadget? What if I told you, you can dump it into your handbag or laptop bag without the battery running out on you in the middle of a plot twist of a nail-biting thriller or that you can read at leisure at night without needing a night light or disturbing your partner?
Still not convinced? Here’s my review of the new Kindle Paperwhite. The Paperwhite is available for Rs 13,999 and is available in black with 8 GB of storage. There is also a more expensive ‘Signature’ edition price at Rs 17,999 with a bigger storage option of 32 GB.
Setting your Kindle up
Setting up your new Kindle is quite easy. Switch it on and follow the instructions on the screen. I would recommend you pair the Kindle Paperwhite with the Kindle app on your smartphone and register your device. If you are an existing user, your purchased books will automatically show up. Head to the Kindle store and its virtual library, and discover more.
Slip it into your handbag or your duffel bag
The primary argument for the Kindle has always been its portability, how easily it can be slipped into your carry-on without weighing you down. The new Kindle Paperwhite weighs only 205 grams, can be easily held in one hand and resembles a really thin tablet. The 6.8-inch display provides enough real estate to enjoy your favourite book under the winter sun, in a cosy cafe, in a busy subway ride or even under the blanket.
If you are a habitual Kindle user, you will not notice any differences in the new model on first look. The rectangular slab is easy to hold and use. The bigger screen combined with 300 ppi resolution will ensure that you can race through your favourite book without any strain on the eyes. I also liked the warm backlight which comes in hand during night-time reading because of which your partner or bedfellow will not be disturbed. You also get more backlight LEDs which are only noticeable when you use the gadget for hours at a stretch.
This Kindle won’t die on you in the middle of a plot twist
The new Kindle offers a 10-week battery life. I usually take all claims with a pinch of salt since a gadget’s lifespan and battery life always depends on its user’s lifestyle and habits. I have been using the Kindle Paperwhite for around four weeks now and I am yet to charge it. If you switch on airplane mode on the Kindle, I reckon that battery will hit the 10-week battery claim easily. However, if you connect your Kindle to Wi-Fi, you would be able to look up complex words with only a minor dent in the battery life.
Let’s tell you about the most exciting aspect about the new Kindle. Alas, you get a USB-C charger. The same cable that you use for your phones, tablets and even laptops can now be used to charge your Kindle. This is what makes life simpler for the user and reduces the spaghetti of cables in your travel bag. I would definitely be travelling with my Kindle for my next holiday if only to make use of a single cable to charge multiple devices. Even when you need to charge your Kindle, it can be done in around 2.5 hours or so.
Read by the pool but at your own risk!
If you are fortunate enough to have a bathtub in your home or are headed for a beach holiday, you can carry the Kindle along with you since it comes with an IPX8 rating which means it’s “waterproof”. Having said that, please don’t dunk or immerse it in water. But a spill here or a fall there won’t harm your Kindle.
Should you buy it?
At nearly Rs 14,000, it’s not an “affordable” investment. However, I know of avid readers who scout tiny lanes in busy markets to find a book and immerse themselves in a plot for days. For those readers, the Kindle Paperwhite is a great investment. If you already have a Paperwhite edition, I wouldn’t recommend upgrading but for first-time buyers, this is the perfect Kindle.
I also recommend testing out features like the auto-adjusting front light and the Dark mode which makes night-time reading easier on the eyes.
The new Kindle Paperwhite is faster and smoother than its predecessor and comes pretty close to the feel of a real hardback without the need for great lighting to enjoy your favourite book. With the holiday season coming up, the Kindle Paperwhite also makes for a great gift for friends and family.
After all, what could be a better gift than one which encourages reading?