Kindle 3, iPad thoughts

Not quite ready to review/compare the Kindle 3 and the iPad so writing a post with Kindle 3, iPad thoughts for Eorse.

Extent of iPad experience: Owned it since launch (US launch). Read lots of books on it. Stopped using it because it was affecting my sleeping patterns (which are already a little messed up).

Extent of Kindle 3 experience: 1 hour with the device, 5-6 pages of notes, lots of time reading user guide and forums and product page. Lots of Kindle 2 experience.  

Kindle 3, iPad – the reading experience

Kindle 3 screen was just like the Kindle 2 screen with better screen contrast and sharper fonts. Compared with the Kindle 2 it felt like it was more than a 50% screen contrast improvement. It’s so light weight that reading will be even easier. Buttons are placed in a way that makes one-handed reading more convenient.

It’s going to be significantly better than the Kindle 2 for reading.

iPad screen is stunning. Having the light lets you read in bed. It did start affecting my sleep so cut out night-time reading. After that there was never a situation where it was preferable over Kindle 2. Then Kindle DX 2 arrived and it was the clear #1 choice. The eInk Pearl screen is just amazing.

Kindle 3, iPad – It’s not a competition

It’s easy to see the $139 Kindle WiFi and $499 iPad WiFi co-existing. It’s hard to subscribe to the theory of –  Get an iPad because it can do more than just read. It’s better to think of it as – If you have the iPad and read a book a month you don’t really need a Kindle. If you read once a week it’s not much to spend $139 on a Kindle WiFi. It’ll be well worth it.

There really shouldn’t be a situation where you have to choose between the two – At $259 for Kindle 2 and $499 for iPad WiFi you can understand someone taking time over which to get. Now, you can either get a 3G iPad for $629 or for $639 ($10 more) you can get iPad WiFi and Kindle WiFi. So maybe AT&T doesn’t get to steal your money – Is that such a bad thing?

Kindle 3 will be MUCH better than iPad for reading during the day, anytime you have lights on, and in sunlight (direct or indirect). iPad will be readable at night. It might also end up being the one device you carry everywhere and you can read on it on the go.

LCD is just as good as eInk is a fallacy. Yes, there is 5% to 10% of the population that isn’t affected. The rest of us are human.

Kindle 3, iPad thoughts – thoughts on Kindle 3 and iPad

Kindle 3 really is Kindle 3.0. It’s beautiful. It’s light – it feels super-light compared to the Kindle 2. Thinner and more compact. $189 for Kindle 3, $139 for Kindle WiFi. 

iPad isn’t really a Kindle Killer. It’s beautiful. It’s too heavy. Having the light at night is so good. It has a good feel to it – it’s a little too big. $499 is expensive. The battery life is stunning for a color screen device.

The Screen (of the Kindle 3). The price is ridiculous (meant this more for the WiFi – it had become obvious when Kindle 2 went out of stock that Kindle 3 would be $189).

The Screen is amazing (for the iPad). It’s cheap for an Apple product. That’s strange – any other company and would have felt ripped off paying $499 for a no-purpose device.

It’s easily the best eReader available (the Kindle 3).

It’s a decent eReader. It’s useful – with the iPad you always feel like the right apps for it haven’t been invented yet. Perhaps a wall painting app or an app that lets you use the iPad as your interface to everything in the real world.  

More words per page. Screen looks oversized since Kindle 3 is so small. Feels much lighter than 8.7 ounces. PDF support is great – notes and highlights are really important. The Lighted Cover is Amazing (in conjunction with quiet page turn buttons it probably solves the reading at night problem for most people).

With the iPad you don’t need the Kindle if your reading is in between other things. If you snack on reading in 10 minute spurts or half an hour at night a few nights a week then you really don’t need Kindle 3. Stick with the iPad.

Thoughts on Kindle 3 after a few days of contemplation

When first saw the Kindle 2 and Kindle 3 side by side thought – the difference is stunning. There’s no comparison.

That feeling is still there. Now, we know around 40% to 50% of the Kindle 3’s improvements are software and should eventually make their way to the Kindle 2. However, the eInk Pearl Screen and graphite case make too much of a difference.

  • Like the Kindle 2 form factor MUCH more than Kindle DX 2 and still prefer reading on Kindle DX 2 because of eInk Pearl and the graphite case.
  • Felt Kindle 3 in graphite didn’t look as good as it would in white and still got kindle graphite for the case.

For reading the combination of eInk Pearl and the graphite case blows away everything else. For iPad we’ll have to see how Retina Display looks on iPad. That’s still 4 months away.

Kindle 3, iPad – Concluding Thoughts

Get an iPad if one or more of the following apply -

  1. You read in short spurts of 10-20 minutes. 
  2. You read around a book a month or less.
  3. You read mostly at night and would prefer not to use a reading light.
  4. You want a device that lets you read and also lets you surf the Internet and play games and watch TV shows.
  5. You are unaffected by LCD screens.

Get the Kindle 3 or a Kindle WiFi if one or more of the following apply -

  1. You read a lot.  
  2. You’d like to read more and waste less time on TV and random Internet surfing.
  3. You don’t like reading on LCDs.
  4. You tend to get distracted and would like something that will let you focus on reading.
  5. You like reading on eInk Pearl (check out the videos at the Kindle DX 2 video page for what eInk Pearl looks like).

The biggest benefit of the Kindle 3 is that you’ll read more. If you like/love to read and wish you could read more the Kindle 3 is it.  

Kindle 3 and iPad result in different things

You have to assess what impact devices have on you.

With the iPad my time was going into playing Chess (which doesn’t even interest me) and reading books at 3 am and playing random games. It was good for reading at night and it was also good for finding other things to do and staying up way too late.

With the Kindle there is reading late into the night but it’s always reading. It’s a different feeling – read that book till 1 am is pretty different from played that game for 4 hours. Reading never really feels like it is a waste. Also, there’s no backlight blasting into your eyes so it doesn’t get tiring or mess up your brain’s sense of what time it is.

The iPad is beautiful for what it is – but it isn’t exactly clear yet. People have figured out how to entertain themselves with it and how to waste time with it. However, we haven’t yet found the perfect application to make it useful (as opposed to cool or trendy or the membership badge for an elite secret society). Hate to say it but that application might be FaceTime (when iPad 2 gets a camera).

Kindle 3, on the other hand, is a device that has found what it’s meant for and it’s evolving more and more towards it. It’s still stunning to see the eInk Pearl screen next to paper and realise we are just a couple of generations away from actually replacing paper.

The third generation of eReaders (Kindle 3, Nook 2, the new Sony Reader) are going to change how we think of eReaders. More importantly, they are going to change how non-readers think of eReaders.

If you want to read, or you want to read more, then a dedicated eReader device with eInk Pearl, such as the Kindle 3 or the Kindle WiFi, is it. At $139 for the Kindle WiFi there really isn’t any good reason not to get it. Perhaps you don’t like it – sell it for $120 or return it within the 30 day return period.

3 Responses

  1. Interesting post. I don’t have an iPad but I’ve owned an ipod touch for years and in my mind it’s just a miniature version – plus handier as I can slip this right in my pocket!

    The only things I really use the ipod touch for are checking email and also viewing the Internet during the day while I’m on the move. It’s got some great apps but mostly they are just big time wasters. When I first bought it I played loads of games but I don’t bother now – my time is too valuable.

    It is useful for shopping and I use the Amazon app and also the eBay app often. I also frequently use the Kindle app and synch up my reading with my Kindle.

    However, despite all this gloss. If I could only have 1 gadget it would be my Kindle 2 hands down. I am a big reader as in I read daily and I never ever get eyestrain with the Kindle. It’s simply gorgeous to read outside (cant even see my ipod touch screen in the sun) and the fact I can download books right from the kindle itself and not have to mess about hooking it up to a computer etc.

    Heres another thing which is very important to me – battery life. I mean I rarely seem to charge the Kindle even though it really is used constantly. I have to charge my ipod touch every single day and I do find the lack of battery life in it very annoying. It annoyed me so much that it has put me off buying an iPad.

    Thing is for he same price as an ipad here in the UK, I can buy a really decent laptop with tons of bells and whistles and hey some handy USB ports too! Unless the ipad price comes down to around half of what it currently is I’ll never buy one – just don’t see why I need it.

  2. Kindle 3 is the ipad killer for me. When ipad hit the market, i was thinking in buying it because it will allow me to read my email, blogs, newspapers, sites, etc. without needing to turn on a computer. But it was expensive and i didn’t need the other features of ipad (games). So I waited some months and now Amazon has the perfect device for my needs. No ipad for me :-)

  3. Switch,
    Great perspective, again. I referenced this great note as a comment from my blog post here: http://blogs.amdocs.com/talgivoly/2010/07/09/the-kindle-is-dead-long-live-the-kindle/.
    Tal

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