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On Kindles.

Amazon yesterday announced a new version of their Kindle electronic book reader thingy-ma-jig and my word does it look improved. The fugly angular look is out and replaced by lovely iPod-esque curves and metal(-look?) back plate. Indeed, Amazon also appear to be borrowing Apple’s promo photography style – solid white or black backgrounds and semi-reflective floors. Someone definitely sees this device as the iPod of reading.

Kindle vs Kindle 2 Kindle Vs Kindle 2

Anywho, aside from the aesthetic improvements it’s now lighter, thinner, has more storage space, sports a crisper display and has improved battery life (upto 4 days apparently). Most impressive for me though is the Automatic Library Backup feature… That is to say that Amazon remembers what you’ve bought (of course) and allows you to download those books again for free if you ever need to. Now that is the sort of “fair play” common sense that i like to see. Such a shame that these days we’ve started to expect to have to pay for all our digital content again if it’s ever lost.

I’d very much like to try out a Kindle and see first-hand what they’re like to read from and use. Sadly that won’t be happening any time soon for a couple of reasons. 1) You can’t get them in the UK. Amazon intend to sell the Kindle 2  internationally – but have no date for that yet. And 2) I certainly won’t be buying one even if they were available here as they’re far too expensive. The US RRP of $359 equates to about £240 which is dear enough – but you know it’d end up being more than that here. I guess something like £299 if/when it does go on sale. No thanks. Especially when the Kindle “books” aren’t substantially cheaper than the physical paper copy. But then i probably had much the same feelings towards the original iPod.