Kindle DX Announced May 8, 2009Posted by Chaim Gartenberg in : Misc. , trackback
The Kindle DX. AKA, a REALLY Big Kindle 2.
Amazon, (ya know, that big online store thing?), announced today the latest version of the popular Kindle eReader. The Kindle DX. In English: A really big Kindle 2.
Now, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. The Kindle 2 is a really nice eReader, definitely beating out say, an iPod Touch, in terms of readability. And the DX has an even bigger screen than its predecessor, almost standard paper size– which is awesome. While I haven’t seen one in person, this definitely looks like an incredible way to read books. Also intriguing about the DX is some of the new partnerships Amazon’s made to get content to the DX.
First up, and most important to me as a teenager and student, is their new partnerships with schools and textbook makers. Yes, textbooks – those enormous, heavy bricks that are the bane of every student, forcibly lugged to school every day, back and forth- have now been digitized on the Kindle DX. So theoretically, you can just carry one of these around, loaded with all your textbooks and other books (I’m a huge reader), which makes it a very enticing deal for those like me whose bag on average, between books and laptop, and other random stuff, weighs more then a small child. However, while it seems like a promising option for students, much has yet to be found out about this arrangement: the project cost for digital textbooks as well as the list companies/textbooks to be available for purchase has yet to be announced.
Another new feature allows Kindle owners to subscribe to a variety of newspapers, including the New York Times, Washington Post, USA Today, and others, directly to their device. This is pretty cool, something that’s been seen a thousand times in sci-fi movies, and combined with the DXs large screen looks like it could be interesting. Cost is about $10-$15 a month per paper- about $50 more a year than print subscriptions.
Which brings up the next thing. Price. And I gotta say, this one’s gonna hurt. $489 worth of hurt. Seriously. Not including content– although Kindle books are cheaper then paper ones. Compare to the Kindle 2, which is already expensive at $359, and the restrictively high price (surely according to a student’s wallet) makes the choice between Amazon’s 2 models even harder; especially considering that while the Kindle 2 is smaller screen-wise, it’s $100 cheaper, has most of these features, and is semi-portable (the screen is 6 inches compared to 9.7 on the DX). But for both devices, in my opinion, if Amazon wants to get teens and students to be interested in ‘em, they’re going to need to reconsider prices.
This isn’t to say that the Kindles aren’t excellent products; they are. But quality comes at price, which here is fairly high. The Kindle DX launches in the summer, and you can preorder it online from Amazon now, as well as view Amazon’s comparison between the Kindle 2 and the DX on that page. More info to come as we get it, particularly regarding textbooks.