As someone who’d had once read a lot of books but recently lost interest in reading, I decided to buy a Kindle to get myself back into reading…and I haven’t been able to put it down since! I ordered my Kindle after seeing my Dad’s new Kindle – the size is perfect, the screen is amazing and the convenience of having thousands of books available to me almost instantly is fantastic!
I’m quite a gadget-geek and being used to using iPhone/iPad, the Kindle isn’t quite as sleek-looking or asthetically pleasing as other must-have gadgets out there – but what it lacks in style, it makes up for in function, not to mention it’s unbelievably ergonomic in design. Being so familiar with my touch screen devices, I found it difficult to remember that it used buttons and wasn’t touchscreen, but after only half an hour of playing around with the controls I had the hang of how to navigate every inch of the Kindle. The controls are so easy and I had set up my Kindle in minutes…possibly the most straight-forward piece of technology I’ve ever used.
The Kindle store itself is amazing! I’ve only had my Kindle a few days but I’ve already surfed the Kindle Store on my device and via my computer, set up wishlists and downloaded items. The speed of which you can purchase and start reading your book is fantastic – I’ve purchased a dozen books to start my electronic book collection and had them queued and waiting to download when I switched my Kindle on, followed by only a few minutes of downloading before all 12-or-so were there waiting for me. Having the free and lower-priced titles available online also is a great bonus and I’ve already discovered new authors and books I might never have chosen myself without them being free or less than £1. It’s such a shame that the prices of some Kindle books are significantly higher than paperback. Also, the books by some authors being quite random in availablility…the first books I wanted to download to my new Kindle were my favourite Kathy Reichs books, but it appears that the first books in the Temperance Brennan series are unavailable for Kindle, but the later ones are, which seems quite strange for those of us wanting the entire series for Kindle.
Another fantastic thing about the Kindle is the battery life. I’m astonished by the life of the Kindle on one charge. I’ve had my Kindle almost a week, connected via Wi-Fi and I’ve not yet charged it – I’ve read several books already and it’s still using the half-charged battery it arrived with.
The internet browser on the Kindle is a little awkward to use and quite slow in response to typing and clicking, but as something that I wasn’t really expecting from the Kindle, it’s an added bonus I’ll be happy using if I needed access to the internet. Seeing as it’s experimental at this stage, I’m sure it’ll continue to be tweaked and improved. It’s a nice bonus to have the browser but if it wasn’t there, I’d still be very happy with my Kindle. A great touch to the Kindle is the option to rate, tweet and share your comments on your finished book via Facebook or Twitter. I’m looking forward to an update in the future which would allow us to lend books between other Kindles. We have three Kindles in our household and we’d love to be able to swap books we’ve downloaded with each other. I know this is something that will come on a software update in the USA, so I’m looking forward to it becomming available in the UK.
Overall, one of the best purchases I’ve ever made and I’ve already been recommending it to others. Although I don’t think it should be compared with an iPad or tablet computer as it’s a completely different type of device, I think it’s undervalued when people talk about ‘must-have gadgets’ and certainly deserves as much hype as those other ‘fashionable’ products.
5 Stars *****