An e-book reader is a portable electronic device designed primarily for the purpose of reading e-books and periodicals. Ebook readers have soared in popularity. The release by Amazon in 2007 of the first Kindle was a turning point in popularity.
The Amazon Kindle fourth generation is probably the top low cost eBook Reader available today due to its size, faster response speed and high quality screen. It provides 600 x 800 pixel resolution at 167 ppi, 16-level gray scale. The Kindle is a mere 0.34 inches thick, 4.5 inches wide and 6.5 inches tall and weighs only 5.98 ounces.
The Kindle is ready to use right out of the box. There is no setup, no software to install, and no computer required to download content.
This Kindle model has built in Wi-Fi, has an 18% smaller body, yet provides the same 6 inch screen size. It will fit in your pocket. The 3G Kindle is 30% lighter, weighing less than 6 ounces. Amazon's most popular eBook reader provides five hard keys, a cursor pad, an on-screen vs. physical keyboard, flash storage capacity of 2GB, and an estimated one month battery life.
In addition to reading books, you can select and read newspapers, magazines and blogs from a supplied library. There are eight different font sizes and three font styles. It will display many image files. The reader provides users with access to a store dedicated to providing material. You can download a free sample, the first few chapters of a book. Amazon also has made available over 1 million books that users can download and read. Over 800,000 books are $9.99 or less. Book download times are usually less than 60 seconds and a Kindle will hold up to 1,400 books.
The Kindle offers 16 different shades of gray in their E-Ink screen. You can highlight and share favorite book passages to friends on Facebook and Twitter directly from the device. It supports audible books. Amazon’s experimental prototypes, available through the Main Menu, provides a download which allows users to listen to MP3 music and AAC files. Another prototype from Amazon is a web browser that makes it possible for you to type in a URL and surf the Internet. A third feature provides a text-to-speech function that allows users to listen to a book. The reader has native PDF support and provides panning and zooming up to nearly a 1/2” letters. There is no support for EPUB book files.
The Kindle's sliding power switch is located at the bottom of the Kindle, and sliding the button will “wake” or put the Kindle to sleep. When the Kindle turns off, or is sleeping, one of 50 different screen savers appear. The Kindle has a keyboard near the bottom of the device that makes it possible for users to more easily search for titles or authors. It has a four-way navigator, and buttons that can select, navigate to the home screen, move one step back, take you to the menu and provide viewing options. There is also a button that will allow you to access numbers and symbols. There are two buttons on either side of the screen; through these buttons you can turn pages forward and back.
The Kindle provides free Wi-Fi access across the United States. The Wi-Fi is accessed through AT&T hotspots, when available. The free Wi-Fi is at times slow.
The Kindle battery can last up to one month on a single charge with Wi-Fi turned off. With Wi-Fi turned on, the battery will last for three weeks, comparable or longer than the battery life of other eBook readers. The battery is sealed into the device, therefore not removable. The Kindle can be charged with a USB cable and will be fully charged in about 4.5 hours.
There are also Kindle Touch and Kindle Touch 3G models. Unlike the Kindle, they provide audio support providing access to over 60,000 audible audiobooks at the Kindle Store and far more elsewhere. They can upload MP3s and podcasts to your device via the USB cable.
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The Amazon Kindle Fire is Amazon's answer to the Apple iPad. It is a sleek-looking device that's more than an ereader. Also known as the Kindle tablet, it shows that Amazon is willing to step outside the pure ereader experience and provide customers with more functionality that many of them crave.
Similar devices to the Fire are the Nook Color, iPad, Blackberry Playbook, Sony Tab-S, Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1, and Nook Tablet. The Kindle Fire carries the lowest price among the group and in many ways it's a superior product. Most experts are surprised that the feature-rich Kindle Fire has been priced by Amazon at such a low price.
This is a 7-inch tablet, which means that it's half as big as an iPad, and way closer in size to a paperback book. Because of the size, reading is easier than on an iPad. because the Fire is widescreen, unlike the 4" x 3" iPad, videos look almost as big as they do on Apple's larger device. The Fire can be more easily operated with one-hand. Its size makes it easier to carry around in a bag, handbag or jacket pocket.
The Amazon Kindle Fire has a color touch screen which means you can watch movies and view pictures on it. Also, it's wonderful for children who still read picture books as the pictures are now in color. This would not be an ideal device for small children who would be left unsupervised with the Kindle, but it's great for those times sitting around in waiting rooms, etc.
If you have an Amazon Prime account then you can also watch over 10,000 movies and TV shows that Amazon has available for streaming on their Website. You can get an Amazon Prime account free trial. Also, if you are a mom or a student you may be eligible to get a free Amazon Prime account.
The Kindle Fire allows its users to read magazines that are in color. If you're someone who wants to read lots of graphic rich magazines then this device is a good choice for you.
This Kindle would also be good for students wanting to purchase Kindle textbooks for their Kindle device. Many textbooks have graphs, pictures, and charts that look better on a color screen.
The Kindle Fire can use Android Apps but only those available on the Amazon App Store. This is mainly a security feature because it prevents you from downloading virus or poor quality applications.
The Kindle DX was first introduced in May 2009, a few months after Kindle 2. It has a 9.7 inch screen. Its dimensions are 10.4 inches x 7.2 inches x 0.4 inches, slightly smaller than an opened DVD case. It weighs 18.9 ounces. It has a 1200 x 824 pixel display that supports sixteen shades of gray. You can switch between landscape and portrait modes. It comes with 4GB of internal memory that can hold up to 3500 books.
The DX uses a Pearl display that has 50% improved contrast over the previous Vizplex screen. With a 10:1 contrast ratio, the text is noticeably darker, more defined, and easier to read in lower light. The eInk screen provides close to zero eye strain and appears much closer to reading a book than a computer screen. The DX comes with free Global 3G wireless for downloading ebooks all over the world. Like the Kindle 3, it has built in Adobe PDF support.
The Kindle DX has a text-to-speech feature with a choice of a male or female voice. The voice is computer generated and sounds fairly decent. Authors and publishers determine if this feature is active or not for a specific book. It supports MP3 playback, as well as audiobooks.
Amazon offers several different reading app's to sync Kindle books with an iPad, iPhone, Blackberry, Android, and iPod touch, as well as the new Kindle for PC and Mac software, allowing for quick and easy transfer of books.
The battery life for the Kindle DX is rated at 7500 page-turns with a single charge. This equals about 2 weeks of use or 4 to 7 days with a lot of wireless navigation.
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