It’s clear that the Kindle 3 still has some tricks up its sleeve – We now know there’s a Kindle 3 microphone and that the Kindle 3 supports CJK and Cyrillic fonts.
Let’s go through these and other Kindle 3 Insights from the official kindle forum, Kindle 3 help pages, and the Kindle 3 User Guide. Instead of taking 5 hours to read through all of those get all the top Kindle 3 insights from this post in 15 minutes.
Kindle 3 – Top 22 Kindle 3 Insights
Here are the things about the Kindle 3 that really stood out –
- There’s a microphone on the Kindle 3 that’s currently not being used. It could be used down the line for speech to text, voice commands, and hands free reading. Here’s a full post on Kindle 3 speech to text and other microphone possibilities.
- Kindle 3 and Kindle WiFi support CJK fonts and Cyrillic fonts. It means that Amazon is getting ready to make a big push in non-English languages.
- There’s now an Audible section in the Kindle Store. Audible audiobooks can only be downloaded when you’re using WiFi – else you can download to your PC and transfer to Kindle.
- Connecting to WiFi – On Home press Menu and choose Settings. Select ‘View’ next to ‘WiFi Settings’ and you get a list of detected WiFi networks. You can connect to one of these networks, rescan, or enter another WiFi network to connect to. For the last option you can also choose ‘set up network’ from the ‘failed to connect’ message dialog and enter network information.
- When entering network information you can choose DHCP or Static connections (for Static connections you need to enter IP Address, Subnet Mask, Router, and DNS). You also choose from WEP, WPA, WPA2, and None for security type. Then enter the network password.
- With WiFi you get – faster downloads, free delivery of personal documents, delivery of Audible audiobook purchases. US customers get free downloads of books, periodicals, and personal documents outside the US if they connect via WiFi.
- Pressing Alt + any character in the top row gives you a number (Alt+Q = 1 and so on). Numbers are also accessible via the SYM key. Removing the numbers row is a terrible decision.
- Auto-disappearing Top Bar. When you open a book there will be a bar at the top with Book Title, network type, whispernet status, and battery status. As soon as you move to the next or previous page the Bar disappears. Press Menu to get it back temporarily (until you press Menu again and it disappears).
- The speakers are now on the top left and the top right of the back of your Kindle 3.
- The back is now texturized rubber for a better grip.
- There’s a new WiFi symbol to indicate when your Kindle 3 is connected to WhisperNet using WiFi. You have to press the Menu button to see type of connection.
- There’s a ‘View Downloading Items’ option in the Menu of your Kindle 3 Home Page that will display what items are being downloaded and their download progress. This is pretty cool.
- Kindle 3 automatically turns 3G off if you connect using WiFi. If you disconnect or move out of range the 3G is automatically switched on. It’s a little strange that the only way to disable 3G is to turn WhisperNet off.
- The Kindle 3 guide talks about an easy way to add multiple items to a Collection. Navigate to a collection, press right to see the options, and choose ‘Add/Remove Items’. You then get a list of all items on your Kindle and can add whatever items you want to the Collection. Items added to the Collection have a checkmark next to them.
- You can adjust contrast in PDFs – The options are lightest, lighter, default, darker, and darkest. This is an interesting addition. See the shortcuts section below for how to ‘nudge’ the chosen view when you are zoomed.
- Password protected PDFs are now supported. For PDFs white margins of PDFs are automatically cropped – perhaps this was present in Kindle 2.5.
- To convert PDF files use the conversion service and include the word ‘convert’ in your email subject line. After conversion you can use Text to Speech with converted PDFs (which are no longer PDFs).
- There’s a new Article Mode in Kindle 3’s web browser – Article Mode shows only the main text on a webpage.
- The browser lets you download Kindle format files (.azw, .azw1), unprotected Mobipocket files (.mobi, .prc), and text files.
- There’s an option on the Settings Page to set your Kindle’s time. There’s also an option on the Settings Page to turn on the Voice Guide (accessible menus).
- Finally, there’s a menu option on the Settings page to ‘Change Primary Dictionary’. Think this is available on Kindle 2.5 too.
That’s quite a few Kindle 3 insights that haven’t been discussed so far.
One useful tip is to name your Kindle 3 something that includes your contact email or phone number. That way, if it gets lost, whoever finds your Kindle 3 will know how to contact you. Thanks to someone at the official kindle forum for this brilliant idea.
It’s quite amusing to see that 75% of the Troubleshooting Questions have the same simple solution – Restart your Kindle 3. Try Again.
Kindle Customer Support
Here are the Kindle 3 support numbers –
For U.S. and other countries, Kindle Support can be reached via –
E-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Phone at 1-206-266-0927 (charges will apply).
U.S. customers can reach Kindle Support by phone at 1-866-321-8851 (toll free).
U.K. customers can contact Kindle Support at email@example.com or by phone at: 0800-496-2449 (toll free) or outside the U.K.: +44 (0)800-496-2449 (charges will apply).
Kindle 3 – Shortcuts
These are the shortcuts listed for the Kindle 3. There may be some overlap with the other two sections –
- Alt+Top Row of Alphabets to get numbers.
- In most books – Press left or right on 5-way to go to the beginning of the next or previous chapter. This is an interesting one.
- Alt+Del to delete everything you’ve typed.
- On Home Page if books are sorted by Title or Author – Press a letter key and then the 5-way to go to the first item starting with that letter.
- Add/remove bookmark – Alt+B. Also, you can press the 5-way twice to bookmark a page.
- Press Alt+Enter on a note or highlight to share it via Facebook or Twitter.
- PDFs – Nudge the chosen view area by pressing down Shift (Up Arrow key) and then using 5-way controller. Nudge = Pan in small increments.
- Shift + SYM to start Text to Speech and Spacebar to pause/resume. Note: You can put your Kindle to sleep when using Text to Speech and it keeps working.
- Alt+Spacebar to stop or play music. Alt+F to skip to next track.
Have left out some of the very obvious ones carried over from Kindle 2.
Kindle 3 – Additional Kindle 3 Insights
Here are some more interesting Kindle 3 facts –
- Progress Bar now shows you the location at which you started current reading session and the location of various notes and bookmarks.
- Kindle WiFi uses 802.11 b and 802.11 g. It automatically remembers and connects to hotspots you have used in the past. It doesn’t connect to enterprise or ad-hoc networks.
- There’s something new called International Subscription Service for delivery of periodicals when you are outside the US.
- The Volume Control and Power Switch have been moved to the bottom of the Kindle 3. There’s also the headphone jack, a microphone, and a micro-USB power port.
- This cryptic phrase – All latest generation Kindle devices have Wi-Fi connectivity built-in. Really? Guess they meant all except the Kindle DX 2.
- There are 3 font types – regular, condensed, and sans-serif.
- There are now Line Spacing options – Small, Medium, and Large. No idea if Alt+Shift+Number still works – Well, that’s probably impossible now.
- There are now two Kindle 3 dictionaries – The New Oxford American Dictionary and the Oxford Dictionary of English. Guess this is done for the Kindle UK push.
- With the Kindle 3 you have to slide and hold the power switch for 7 seconds to turn it off. It’s a bit much. Resetting now requires sliding and holding the switch for 15 seconds.
- The charge indicator light is now around/under the power switch.
- To check whether you have Kindle WiFi or Kindle 3 3G+WiFi – On the Home Page press Menu, then choose Settings, and on the Settings Page look under Device Info at the ‘Network Capability’ line.
- Apparently, annotations created for any personal documents, blog items, or subscription items older than 7 days are not saved when they are deleted. They will be in the My Clippings File. However, if you re-load the deleted item the annotations won’t be there. Not sure if it was always this way or whether this is a Kindle 3 change.
- The music player is still strange – ‘songs will be played in the order they were added to your kindle’ and there’s still no ‘previous track’ button.
- To Turn Off the Popular Highlights Feature – On the Home screen press Menu, then choose Settings, and then on the Settings Page click on ‘turn off’ next to Popular Highlights.
- When on a Popular Highlight press Enter to show or hide the number of people who highlighted this particular passage.
- It was interesting to find out that you can view a list of Popular Highlights for a book and sort them by popularity.
- There’s experimental .docx conversion through Amazon’s document conversion service. Zip files sent to Amazon are automatically opened up and any convertible files are converted.
You can check for additional Kindle 3 tips and insights at the Kindle 3 Help Pages.