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The Kindle has been fascinating me for some time.
I was an early adopter of Ebook readers, starting with the Rocket Ebook more than a decade a go. But the Rocket line died due to company purchases and mismanagement. I was disappointed. I loved the idea of being able to have hundreds of books with me everywhere. I knew something would take its place eventually.
The experience with the death of the Rocket devices caused me to be skeptical about anyone producing an electronic book. So when the Kindle came out, I watched, and waited. Some of my coworkers were early adopters, and I liked what I saw.
I’ve been toying with the idea of purchasing a Kindle lately. Mostly because my technical books (whose authors seem to get paid by the pound) are so bulky as to preclude any on-the-go reading. I could stack up five kindles to equal the height of the technical book I am reading right now. An added feature is the ability to handle PDF files. My PDF backlog is up at about 40 documents.
But I’m not ready to push the “buy” button yet. (I suspect that if I didn’t have a shelf of books waiting for me to read them, I would probably be more open to getting a Kindle at the moment.) So here are my pros and cons to the device itself. I would like anyone out there who has a Kindle (or another ebook device) to weigh in on this discussion, either via email or by the comment section.
- Free delivery of books. I can get books delivered via Whispernet for free – no ongoing maintenance fees.
- Big selection of books. This includes the technical books that I am reading.
- Built-in dictionary. I will only look up words if it is easy.
- Long battery life. The people I know who have these devices tell me it can go three weeks (with Wifi off) between charging.
- Web browser. Since I do not have an iPhone, it would be nice to have a way to check email when I’m not near a Wifi hotspot.
- PDFs. The Kindle can handle PDF files.
- Font and orientation selection. This is one thing I loved about the Rocket is that I could set the font and orientation to whatever I wanted.
- The price. This device is not cheap.
- Warranty. One of my friends had a problem with getting a replacement for her device under warranty because she had not bought the extended…and Amazon claimed (without examining the actual device) that her condition wasn’t covered under the original warranty.
- No back light. While I seldom used this feature on my Rocket, I did enjoy it when I needed to read in the dark.
If you own a Kindle (or other ebook reader) let me know what you think. Thanks!
Photo by jblyberg