Amazon.com has just introduced a new addition to their Kindle family of wireless reading devices: Kindle with U.S. and International Wireless. With this new Kindle, I can receive books, newspapers, and magazines wirelessly while at home or abroad in over 100 countries. Whether I’m in New York, Paris, Sao Paulo, Mumbai, Beijing, Tokyo, or Sydney, I can think of a book and be reading it in less than 60 seconds.
I can’t believe I don’t already have one of these! I lug around at least three paperbacks in my backpack when I travel long term. When I’ve finished reading one, I either trade with other travelers or exchange it for one in a hostel paperback exchange library. Unfortunately, the quality of the books I receive in return are never as good as those I trade in. Kindle would solve this problem for me while also eliminating a lot of weight in my pack. I also love the idea of buying travel guides in electronic form, because I inevitably leave the hard copies behind when I leave a country, simply to eliminate weight, and then have to buy the guide book again when I revisit that country.
Amazon’s new Kindle with U.S. and International Wireless is priced at $279Â and can be pre-ordered today for delivery starting in two weeks. Their current, best-selling model, Kindle with U.S. Wireless, has been reduced to $259, down from $299, and is available for immediate shipment.
Kindle utilizes the same 3G wireless technology as advanced cell phones, so I’ll never again need to hunt for a Wi-Fi hotspot. There are no monthly wireless bills and no yearly contracts. There is no software to install, and no syncing required. Kindle is as thin as most magazines and weighs less than a paperback, but it but can hold 1,500 books. Its electronic-ink screen looks and reads like real paper with no glare, even in bright sunlight. A long battery life allows me to read for up to two weeks on a single charge. The U.S. Kindle Store has more than 350,000 books, including 107 of 112 New York Times bestsellers, plus top newspapers, magazines, and blogs. Again, why do I not own one of these?
7 thoughts on “Amazon Reveals New Kindle – Perfect for Travelers”
This device has appealed to me for a long time — until a few days ago what I thought was a steep price kept me from taking the plunge. Now I’m so glad I did! I’ve had my Kindle almost a week, and have devoured three to four books. Here are my first impressions.
1) The size is perfect. I was seriously considering the Kindle DX, but then chose not to go that direction because it was just too big. I don’t need another 8″ x 11″ notepad to carry — I have enough of them as is. I want something small and streamlined that will hold a LOT of books.
2) The readability is very good. While there may be a bit of glare at times from a nearby light inside, or the sun outside, tilting the screen just a little will remove it. The adjustable font sizes are wonderful, and easy to change.
3) Downloading books is easy. I live in an area where the Whispernet coverage is spotty, but there is always the option of downloading to my computer hard drive then transferring to the Kindle. The download speed is also very fast — in less than a minute a full book is available for reading. The books can also be kept on archive at Amazon if the Kindle becomes too cluttered. I’d recommend keeping a copy of the book on one’s hard drive as well if space is needed on the Kindle.
4) The “feel” is right. I was wondering how I would react to having a Kindle in my hands compared to a regular book. Would I miss the turning of pages and the sensation of a bound volume at my fingertips? I actually don’t miss them — I enjoy the Kindle being so easy to use. I am glad the page turning buttons are on both sides, for they give my hands a bit more flexibility while reading.
5) It is worth the money for a heavy reader. When you read as many books as I do, what to do with the books already read becomes a huge problem. As a pastor who has been in the ministry almost 30 years, my library is very large. I’ve converted my reference titles to a digital format with Libronix Bible software (also reviewed here) but there is still the problem of what to do with everything else. Now I’m able to streamline my library even further by reading digital versions of books I purchase regularly. Once the book is read, I keep it on the Kindle, transfer it to my hard drive, or leave it on Amazon. The reduction in hassle of handling and storing paper books is WELL worth the small price paid for the device. If you don’t read much, then you’d probably be better off not having a Kindle and just sticking with the traditional paper versions.
6) The battery life is superb. The battery will last about four days with the download function enabled. If the download function is disabled, it will last much longer. Charging can be done via an AC outlet or through the USB connection.
The only shortcoming I see with this device is that the titles can’t be transferred from one Kindle to another. With my wife being a librarian, it is only a matter of time until she will have one as well. Under the present arrangement with Amazon, books must be purchased and downloaded for each individual account.
If you’re considering a Kindle and read fairly often, I’d recommend taking the plunge. You’ve always got the 30-day return period to try it. I do believe however, you’ll be very pleased!
This is a great Blog.I wish I had the time to
just backpack my days away.This Venture of yours
must also have quite a price tag,as you must fly
or take ship cruises.
Also staying in Hotels around the World can
be costly.If I had the time and Money,I would
like to Backpack The U.S.A. and Canada.Maybe you
have a budget on a trip like that.
To Your Success,
International Wireless prices get down, Great i think i can buy it now. Thanks for your Good News Please keep posting these type of updated news.
Good Information in this Blog. Keep up the good work!
This is a wonderful gadget. Lightweight, tons of space for 1500 books, thin, 3G wireless without contracts, monthly fees. What else could a reader ask for?
The Kindle has just been released in Australia. Will be interesting to see the uptake. The furore over removing the 1984 book got a fair bit of coverage over here.