PROS / The Kindle has a touchscreen display.
CONS / The screen resolution is only 800 x 600.
VERDICT / The new Kindle has a full touch interface and a low price, making it a good entry-level eBook reader.
The old versions of the Kindle eBook reader were always affordable, but their designs were ages apart from other competing mobile reading devices. Amazon made some big improvements to the new Kindle without the raising price. Its controls and features are similar to the Voyage and Paperwhite, so if you're curious about eBooks, the new Kindle is a low-cost way to try out the technology.
The eReader's dimensions fall in line with the best entry-level eBook readers – it is 6.7 x 4.7 x 0.4 inches in size and weighs 6.7 ounces. The Kindle isn’t heavy or bulky, and this makes it easy to carry around in a bag or backpack. Unlike higher-end Kindle models, the basic eBook reader doesn’t have 3G support. This means you have to find a local Wi-Fi connection if you want to purchase content while you're away from your home.
Although the new Kindle has an updated touchscreen display, its resolution hasn't improved. It still has a 6-inch screen with a resolution of 800 x 600 and a pixel density of only 167 pixels per inch (ppi). By comparison, the best eReaders top out at 300 ppi. The Kindle still has perfectly adequate screen quality for reading, but the sharpness of the displayed text is a step below higher-end models. Also, the battery has not improved with this new design. Still, with a 14-hour charge, according to Amazon, its battery lasts far longer than the company’s Fire tablets.
While the Kindle’s flaws are evident, they also keep its price low. For those who've never used an eReader, the low-priced Kindle is a great point of entry. The charm of eReaders is their focus on reading. You don't have to worry about distracting apps or games. If you decide you like the simplicity of the dedicated eBook reader platform, you can upgrade to something with more features with your next purchase.
New improvements make the Kindle look and act similar to the better Voyage and Paperwhite eReaders. It has some noticeable flaws and doesn't have the capabilities of a Fire tablet, but if you're curious about eBook readers, the Kindle is a low-priced entry-level device.