The Verdict on Kindle 2
Via Ars Technica
The new version displays more shades of grey than were previously possible, and Amazon has paired that with a set of updated fonts to make the text significantly crisper and easier to read. But it’s the speed of the display that makes everything different. In any case, the result is that anything done on the screen is very much faster—moving the cursor, selecting text, typing, menus, you name it.
Physically, the most striking aspect of the device is its thickness—it really is remarkably thin, and the sleek metal back (reminiscent of the first-generation iPhone) is very appealing.
The downside of this is that the screen, largely unchanged in size, really appears to be swimming in a sea of white plastic now, since there are wide margins between it and the edge on the upper third of the device.
Today Jeff Bezos held up the Amazon Kindle 2 in front of a lecture hall filled with journalists and outlined his vision for the white slab e-book reader: “Every book ever printed in every language available for download in under sixty seconds.” It’s a good goal. Wouldn’t you want every book every printed just a click away from the device in your pocket?
… it’s even better than the last, with a slightly faster screen with 16 shades of gray (instead of four), a wholly more intuitive interface that uses a joystick instead of the interesting but obtuse clicky scroll wheel, and a new text-to-speech function that turns any text into an audiobook that sounds, well, robotic, but really not half bad.
My only complaint: While the new model now has 2 gigabytes of memory onboard, seven times as much as the old Kindle in storage terms, it no longer has the SD flash memory card slot that made it possible to keep a library of tens of thousands of books on the device at once.
Also read the live updates that were posted during the Amazon Kindle event.