Friday, 9 August 2013

Amazon Kindle Review | A Little Bit of Literature

I am a book addict! I've never made a secret of that, and if I'm not working or at university (or blogging) I have my head buried in a book! I love the feel of a book and I get a strange satisfaction when I turn that final page. That feeling was one of the reasons I was reluctant to get a kindle when my mum offered to get me one for Christmas a couple of years back. 
I decided to take her up on that offer after looking at the discounted price of most of the books, and thinking about the compact-ness of the device. Books can be heavy, and the Kindle weighs less than a small paperback book, 247 grams to be exact. It also fits in the small bags I like, and it's got so many books at the touch of a button. The display is a pretty decent size (6 inches) and it's great to read from because it's like looking at paper. There is no back light and it's no reflective so you can read in the sun. It does get harder to read as the light fades, but a simple book light can fix that problem. You can also get fancy cases that have a built in lamp, but they are quite expensive. The book lamps can be found for about a £1 in poundland and places like that!

The kindle I have myself is a from a previous generation of Kindle and it cost my mum £159 when she got it! The version that I have is very similar to the Kindle Keyboard which is now £149. It is 3g and Wi-Fi enabled which means you can get books on the go in just about any place. The 3g is pretty reliable and there is no contract or further charges after you purchase the kindle. I think that's great because I would have hated to have to have paid for internet access on the go.

You can edit the setting to your liking which I am a huge fan of. I wear glasses, and hate wearing them in them in bed so it's great that the text can be a normal size when I wear my glasses and huge when I'm not. There are a range of font sizes and text spacing setting so there should be something for everyone.

There are some functions that I don't utilize, and I haven't heard from other people that they use them. The text to speech function sounds like a robot, and I just cannot follow along with it. The music function is pretty good but I have a phone and ipod with a better storage and they don't specifically have to be in the MP3 format like they have to be for the kindle. You can also flip the screen so you can read to the side. To me this is totally pointless but someone might like it. 

The kindle holds approximately 3500 books, and with the wireless off (and if you read about half an hour per day) the battery can last for about 2months which is amazing! I love that the battery lasts a long time because I am the worst person at charging things up! 

It does have a browser that is considered experimental and it something that can be improved upon. It's very temperamental but for quick browsing of Facebook or something like that it works and it's great for looking on amazon or checking emails in a squeeze. 

The keyboard is quiet when you type which is something I love. I know it's quite insignificant but loud clicky buttons annoy me to no end. The text is super clear and crisp, and even though it's black and white you can still see book covers if you want too. It's not something that makes a difference to me though. 

They great great great thing about the kindle is that you do not need a computer. Everything can be done from the device itself and you don't need to download anything specific for it to work. It does have system updates but they are done through the device, so again you don't need a PC. It's really easy to set up, all you need to do it link it to your Amazon account (you can create one for free if you don't have one). 

You can buy books in on click of a button if you have a payment method linked to your account, and the books download in less than a minute.  There are about a million free books, and while some of them are shockingly rubbish some of them are actually pretty great! The paid books are normally cheaper than physical copies even though Kindle books are subject to VAT unlike physical books.  Obviously not every book is available, but I think I've only had trouble getting one book on here and that's because it was a super old book that wasn't even published anymore. You can also  get free samples of a book (which is usually about a chapter of the book) so before you purchase anything you can see if you would want to read a book. This has saved me so much money because I usually impulse buy books and this feature stops me doing that. 

If you read for school or something like that or like to make annotations and highlight books, this has a feature to do that. You can save favorite quotes by highlighting them and you can make notes with the annotation features if you like to that sort of thing. 

I have to say that while it does take some getting used to, it's so quick to read on here. I think it might be something to do with not being able to see how much you have left to go. It's also lightweight and it's easy to read when your in bed because it doesn't get awkward to hold or anything like that. 

There is a built in dictionary that works really quickly. All you have to do is use the arrow keys to the word you want to look up and the definition pops up almost right away. It's great if you are reading something more advance, or reading in English as a second language. It saves having to dig out that huge dictionary, and looking it up! 

It can be password protected which is pretty cool. If you are reading something on the naughty side and don't want anyone finding out it might be good and it's great if you are scared of losing it and someone using the one click payment feature to spend all your money on books. It's also great if you have little sisters that love to ruin and play about your stuff, like me. the password makes sure they keep their nosey faces out of my stuff and keeps the grubby little mits off it too. 

I'm really sorry this is such a long post but I wanted the review to be really comprehensive. There are things that could be improved with the kindle but overall it's a fantastic device and I wouldn't be without mine. It is most definitely an investment thing because it's not cheap but it's great! It works in all lights and it does what it says it will do. There service from the kindle team is also amazing but I'll save that for another time. 

You can see the range of kindles here, or purchase the version I have here.

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