Used Kindle DX Vs Sony Reader Daily Edition

Amazon’s release of a $349 used Kindle DX (refurbished by Amazon, US version) fascinates me as they have now managed to match all 3 of Sony’s new offerings on price. There is also the $399 Refurbished Kindle DX (International version) which is not as cheap but a better fit if you travel outside the US or want better resale value.

While Kindle DX Vs Sony Daily Edition was something a lot of readers would not consider because they couldn’t afford the $489 price of the Kindle DX, the lower price means a lot people will compare the used kindle dx with the Reader Daily Edition.  

This post looks at why the used kindle dx is a compelling alternative to the daily edition.

You could also check a kindle dx review here or a short write-up on the Sony Reader daily edition.

A Reader considering the Daily Edition, suddenly has the Used Kindle DX option

Say you’re in the market for a larger screen eReader, and were considering the Daily Edition because the Kindle DX was out of your budget. You see a used kindle dx and you think -

  1. It’s the same price. Well, it is refurbished. However, Amazon give you a 1 year warranty, same as on a new Kindle DX.
  2. There’s Free Internet. The Sony Reader Daily Edition has wireless just to buy books. With the Used Kindle DX you get Free Internet for life.
  3. The screen is bigger – 9.7″ is great for newspapers and magazines.  
  4. You have read about all the readability problems and glare due to the touch layer on the Sony Touch.

Perhaps, most importantly, you don’t have to wait until December. You can get a used Kindle DX now.

You’ve gone from not even considering the DX to thinking the used kindle dx might be more value for money than the Daily Edition.

Should Amazon drop the used kindle dx to $349 in December?

Amazon are taking the fight to Sony and a good follow-on would be to under-cut the Daily Edition when it comes out.

We know that Sony have a lot of ‘feel good’ benefits -

  1. ePub support.  
  2. Openness (even though they do have DRM).
  3. Free Google Books.
  4. Free Library ebooks and the library finder feature.

Plus it has Touch.

However, Amazon has got some core value propositions Sony cannot match  i.e.

  1. Free Internet.  
  2. Wide range of new books – Over 300K compared to 100K or so from Sony. 
  3. The Text to Speech feature.

The missing ingredient was price and with the used Kindle dx Amazon are beginning to fix that. They drop it to $349 and suddenly Sony sees most of the Daily Edition’s target market eaten up by the used kindle dx.

What about Economies of Scale - When does a new Kindle DX hit the used Kindle DX price?

It’s not clear to me what people think of ‘refurbished’. Are people going to be comfortable buying the used Kindle DX because of the 1 year Amazon warranty?

Given that Amazon has been telling readers they can test out Kindles for 30 days and return them, could it be that a lot of the Refurbished Kindles have hardly been used?

Which brings us to economies of scale and wondering why Amazon is introducing the used Kindle DX instead of cutting prices.

It’s been nearly 4 months since the Kindle DX was released. At what point are economies of scale going to kick in allowing Amazon to knock down the price of a new Kindle DX?

It’d be rather fortuitous if it happened towards mid November. A $425 new Kindle DX and a $349 Used Kindle DX and Sony’s Daily Edition would find its target market torn into three portions.

6 Responses

  1. Your review is funny.

    I love how you play down ePub, Google books, and open format when, in fact, those are majorly important reasons NOT to get a Kindle.

    With my Sony PRS 505, I can get books from any online ebook retailer. I am not limited to Amazon.com. Not that I dislike Amazon — on the contrary I use Amazon to buy many things. But I dislike being locked into one store.

    With Sony, you can also check out library books for FREE, most of which come as epub files that expire after 2-3 weeks (but you can always renew them like traditional library books).

    Sorry, but wi-fi and text-to-speech are “feel good benefiits.” My ebook reader is currently loaded with a dozen or so books in queue to be read. I am NEVER without a book to read — thus I never need wi-fi at a coffee shop, etc. And text-to-speech is annoying, unless you like listening to simulated electronic voices with no tone or emotion.

    • the library finder point is valid.

      However, saying you’re locked into buying from the Kindle Store is incorrect.
      A lot of ebook stores sell books in mobipocket format that works straight on the Kindle.
      Also all Google Free Books can be converted for the Kindle.

      Update: You do buy your kindle store books in kindle format so that’s a lock – however, sony store books have DRM too so it works both ways.

  2. Sony Daily Reader vs Amazon Kindle DX — My Personal Review

    I really wanted the Sony Daily Reader to kick butt against my sweet Kindle DX, but it just doesn’t cut it for me.

    Comparison Observations:

    1) Kindle screen has a lighter background, making text easier to read than on the Sony.
    2) Book formatting is horrible on the Sony. There are large spaces between paragraphs in almost every book. Sometimes margins are very wide, too. Seems to be no way to re-format. Kindle books look like their printed counterparts. Still some formatting issues on Kindle, too, but they are typos, mostly.
    3) Sony text is a tad bit more clear than text on the Kindle. But not so much that it makes a big difference. I can see it with a magnifying lens. Could be because the Kindle is so much larger than the Sony.
    4) Usability via online store is easier to use on the Kindle than on the Sony. It is also much faster on Kindle.
    5) Glare from lights and the sun is far worse on the Sony than on the Kindle. You need more light to read on the Sony.
    6) Books are generally more expensive in the Sony store than they are at Amazon, and a tad bit more difficult to purchase.
    7) Being able to use applications on the Sony seems cool, but not necessary for a reader. It doesn’t add anything spectacular for me personally since I want to use the device primarily as a reader.
    8) The Sony Daily Reader has a touch screen, which is very cool, but, again, it doesn’t add anything spectacular to the reader. The necessity of it is just not there. The navigation on the Kindle works very well with the five-way navigation button.
    9) The default font is nicer on the Sony than on the Kindle.
    10) The Sony does fit nicely in one hand. It’s not possible to hold the Kindle DX in the same way, but I can lay the Kindle flat on my palm and hold it up without it sliding out of my hand, which is just wonderful. Also, holding the Kindle with one hand behind and one finger wrapped around the front works very well. Because the screen is so large, turning pages with your free hand is no big deal.
    11) The Sony allows you to add an additional memory card and change the battery. Not a big factor for me, though. The DX has tons of memory, even for huge PDF files. The battery will likely last 5 years, as which time I’ll be interested in the latest and greatest reader.
    12) PDF files display much more nicely on the Kindle DX because of its size.

    The Kindle DX is the clear winner for me over the Sony Daily Reader. In almost every respect it is the better reading device.

    • thanks for your comparison Chad. I haven’t had the chance to look at a Sony Reader Daily Edition so your review really helps.

    • Chad your review and comparison has sold me on the DX. Everything i was worried about with the sony you have confirmed is indeed a fallback.

      Thanks, your review was very helpful.

  3. Thanks. I still stand by that review. The new Kindle DX is even better than the first one. Better contrast, crisper text, faster page turns, etc. It’s one of the coolest devices I’ve ever owned.

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