Hot off the Inbox Press: Kindle 2.0

Book CoverAt the press conference this morning, Amazon revealed the Kindle 2.0. The press release touts:

- New buttons make it easy to turn the page from any holding position.

It’s already easy to turn the page from any holding position. It’s easy to turn the page if you don’t mean to.

Heh. It’s not a bug, it’s a feature!

The new 5-way controller on Kindle 2 allows for more precise note-taking and highlighting both up and down and side to side in lines of text.  The new controller also makes it easy to quickly jump between articles and sections of newspapers.

As expected, Kindle is targeting newspaper and magazine readers as much as book readers – smart move, with the wireless onboard. And given how newspaper-addicted the commuters around me are, this is a big lure.

Using the read-to-me feature, anything you can read on Kindle, including books, newspapers, magazines, blogs, and personal documents, Kindle 2 can read to you…. The Text-to-Speech feature in Kindle 2 utilizes Realspeak™ Solo software from Nuance Communications, Inc.

Now that is very cool, since I would love to stitch and listen to books at the same time. But I can promise that such a feature would drive Hubby nuts, to say nothing of uncaffeinated commuters using that feature without headphones.

Never underestimate the power of uncaffeinated commuters to do something outrageously annoying and stupid on the bus, train, or subway.

Pictures of Kindle II: Now with More Bubbliciousness are on the Amazon website, where you can preorder your device now.

Am I tempted to upgrade? No, thanks. The read-to-me feature is alluring as hell, but I’m still after bargains and am eager to pit the Sony against Kindle 1.0. And at $359, this is not a bargain, nor is it enough to tempt me to trade in and upgrade. 

Comments are Closed

  1. 1
    Hilcia says:

    Well, I’ve had my Kindle on pre-order since Christmas (a present) AND, just looked at the order—guess what?  My Kindle will automatically be upgraded to a Kindle 2.0, since my order is scheduled to be received end of February… SLAM DUNK!

  2. 2
    Sarah Grimm says:

    I love my Kindle and will not be upgrading.  I’m actually not even tempted.

  3. 3
    ev says:

    I cancelled my order when the news first came out about the 2.0 and I finally got a really good look at it. Not all of it was in a positive light.

    I am glad I am sticking with my Sony! Now I can spend that money I saved on more books for my trip!

  4. 4
    Kalen Hughes says:

    I still like my CyBook better.

  5. 5
    thetechdiva says:

    They got rid of the SD card slot!?!?!?  No thanks Kindle2, I like sharing my books with friends. Go away now.

  6. 6
    Becky says:

    My credit card is practically vibrating with the need to order a Kindle.  I got a $50 Amazon gift certificate for Christmas, so Sony and Kindle are essentially the same price.  I love the idea of being able to buy a new book anywhere any time, without being tied to the computer.  And, granted, I’ve only started researching ebook prices, but on the handful of books I want to buy first are cheaper on Amazon than at Sony’s bookstore or Fictionwise.  I know there’s no guarantee that Amazon will continue to be cheaper, but the way things stand the Kindle still looks like a better deal than the Sony.

    I’d love to hear any reasons I should go for the Sony instead of the Kindle.  $300 (after my gc and not including the actual books) is a lot to drop on a toy right now, even if it might replace the TV and laptop both as most used electronic device in my house.  I want to be sure if I get the Kindle it’s because it really is the best value, not the best hyped.

  7. 7
    Suze says:

    I was all set to by a Sony this weekend, and fortunately discovered at the last moment that it’s not Mac-friendly.  Argh.

    I was looking at a co-worker’s iPod Touch this morning, and it looks really, really good and clear, and it it was only steno-pad sized, and let me take notes, it would be PERFECT.  Why is Apple being so slow about developing an e-reader?

  8. 8
    SB Sarah says:

    Suze: Calibre is free, and can make the Sony work with the Macs. The arrival of Calibre is why I’m considering the Sony and putting it to the test against the Kindle, because I’m a Mac user at home.

  9. 9
    Jessica says:

    I’m leaning toward the Kindle because of the compatibility with audiobooks.  I’m a big audiobook person and I love Audible – excellent selection, excellent sound quality.  To be able to cut down the number of devices while traveling, and buy audiobooks any time (tho they do have to be loaded from a computer), and be able to switch from audio to reading without having to switch devices…. it’s very tempting.  And I’m a super dedicated mac person (but i can’t afford an iphone and at&t doesnt offer service near my house), so it’s seeming like the Kindle is the next best choice for me.

  10. 10
    Teresa says:

    I’d be very tempted to upgrade, if I had limitless funds.

    I was sort of amazed that they kept the page turning buttons so close to where they were. It is the one major flaw. Well, that and the graphics. On my 1.0, the text is great, but pictures and graphs are hard to see. The upgraded screen may take care of that problem.

    I still love the Kindle. Maybe I’ll start saving now for the 3.0.

  11. 11
    Suze says:

    Sarah: Thanks!  Have you tried it?  Is it really easy, or is it just “can be made to work”?

    I’m a bit of a technological dummy, and over the past three years I’ve been through two different wireless routers that I spent WAY too much time setting up and troubleshooting and cursing over.

    I finally gave up on the latest, 3-month-old router this past weekend (I was in a spending frame of mind, that I’ll be sorry for later) and got an Airport Extreme.  It was SO EASY to set it up, and there was such a noticeable improvement in internet access, that I’m even more reluctant to attempt to patch non-Apple hardware to my Mac.

  12. 12
    MichelleR says:

    I’d just taken the plunge a couple weeks ago and ordered Kindle. I’d noticed the estimated delivery was March and then heard that Kindle 2 was rumored. I was keeping an eye on it to see if I’d have to make the switch, but they’d anticipated it and automatically upgraded it to 2.

    Stupid person question—I can read EC and Samhain books on Kindle, right? Do I just DL it in PDF?

    Bed36—no comment. :)

  13. 13
    Madd says:

    I’ve been dithering between the Kindle and the Sony myself. I really want a reader because I have a decent collection of e-books and short stories, more than half of which I’ve gotten free, and I’d like to be able to carry them around with me. Hell, just being able to sit comfy on the couch and not be staring at a computer monitor would be great. I’ve been wanting the kindle for the wireless, but I’d rather it worked with my files with minimum fuss.

  14. 14
    Julianna says:

    The book-reading feature –  unless computer speech has gotten much better, wouldn’t it be like William Shatner on acid?  That’s what it used to sound like.

  15. 15

    I, too, am a Mac user and own a Sony Reader. I initially went with Sony because it seemed more versatile. When I found it wanted to mate with a PC, not a Mac, I shrugged, loaded up my VMware Fusion and am good to go. VMware creates a PC environment on my Mac and the Reader (dear, dumb thing) doesn’t know the difference. So I have the best of both worlds…my Mac and a Sony Reader. And, all respects to Kindle, I will never switch over. Even though the Reader is not wireless, I use it to read ebooks, and I have never yet had a situation where I needed a book so badly that I couldn’t wait to hook up to my computer to get it. Since I can load 160 books at a time on my Reader, and don’t imagine that situation will ever arise.

  16. 16
    schwartzie says:

    So, for the past few months I’ve been thinking about buying an ebook reader (I hope that’s the correct terminology), and I’ve looked at Kindle, but I really don’t know any other kind.  Anyone have any suggestions?  I would appreciate any help!  Thanks!

  17. 17
    Lam says:

    Hi schwartzie,
    I myself have a Sony reader, it’s a fabulous device, and I find that you don’t really need to be super tech savvy to use it.  The reason that I chose the Sony over the Kindle was because the Kindle isn’t available in Canada, so in the end it was a pretty easy decision :)  If you’re thinking of taking the eReader plunge, I would highly recommend heading over to  It’s. full of lots of helpful people and even if you’re an absolute beginner, you’ll find clear information that’s easy to understand.

    Hope that helps!

  18. 18

    Having played with both a Kindle and Sony, I opted for the Sony.

    I have arthritis, so the ergonomics are vital. I can hold the Sony many different ways, because it comes with a case. I can hold the Kindle in three ways without hitting a button.

    If hand flexibility is an issue, see if you can try both and see which works better for you.

  19. 19

    Our outstanding Kindle order was also just upgraded.  So I guess we’re test-driving whether we like it or not!

  20. 20
    schwartzie says:

    Hey Lam!  Thanks so much for the page to check out.  I really appreciate it!  :)

  21. 21

    I’m going to sell my Kindle 1 and upgrade to a Kindle 2.

    Very excited. I like the idea of the larger memory on the Kindle and the better battery life—I was having problems when I used an SD card, because it leeches the battery faster than if you don’t use one. I’m assuming this will be fixed.

    I also like the new buttons and the new navigation ability. So….I’ll give it a try and report back to you, SB Sarah, if you like.

    Anyone wants to buy a Kindle 1 for cheap ($225) email me.

  22. 22
    Bonnie says:

    It all comes down to what works for the individual with ereaders, IMHO.  There’s no right or wrong.  Good or bad. 

    The Kindle really does work for me and I’m not interested in going all over the net to save a few pennies. 

    For me, the wireless feature is HUGE.  And I love that Amazon keeps my books and I don’t have to deal with saving them on my computer.  I know, I know… what if Amazon pulls the Kindle.  Well, I guess I’m naive, but I think that if that were to happen we’d get some advanced notice, so that we could take action.

    In a nutshell, the Kindle is convenient, efficient and easy for me.  And that’s what I want.  And I’m going to upgrade to the new one.

  23. 23
    Annmarie says:

    My mama ordered the Kindle for me in the early fall.  I still don’t have it.  They emailed today and said I’d get the Kindle 2.  Luckily, I have another ebook reader so I’m not chomping at the bit for the Kindle.  Or Kindle 2.

  24. 24
    lilywhite says:

    I actually have no desire to upgrade.  My K1 works great and there are things about the K2 that I don’t feel are an improvement at all.  And I’m part of the 0.00001% who liked the buttons exactly where they are on the K1!

    word verification:  until84—I hope my Kindle works until I’m 84.

  25. 25
    Beau says:

    The lack of an SD slot means that anything you want to read on it must go through Amazon. That’s a killer for me. I’ll stick with the Sony.

  26. 26
    ev says:

    I have arthritis, so the ergonomics are vital.

    another reason I opted for the Sony, too.

    I was having problems when I used an SD card, because it leeches the battery faster than if you don’t use one.

    Haven’t noticed that to be a problem on the Sony.

  27. 27
    lilywhite says:

    The lack of an SD slot means that anything you want to read on it must go through Amazon.

    I’m not sure where you got this idea but it’s not accurate.  I’ve had my Kindle since last April and I’ve downloaded maybe 8 books directly from Amazon.  The others (probably 50 or 60 other titles) have all been acquired from other sources.

  28. 28
    Hilcia says:

    Exactly lili—there are a lot of options out there… you can download books for the Kindle from other sites as well.  Although, I do most of my shopping for print books from amazon anyway… so, this was perfect for me.  But for me personally, the Kindle will work best, because I like to do research and that feature alone is worth it.  My brother has the K1 and he loves it.

  29. 29
    DS says:

    I’m dithering….dithering….dithering.  I have Kindle 1.0 and I’m satisfied with it—but would I be happier with 2.0?  Do I have an obligation to spend as much as I can to help the economy (it may sound really weird but this has become a real question I ask myself.  I do have a moderate amount of discretionary funds.  Is it my patriotic duty to spend? ) 

    No Sony for me thanks—I’m still mad at them about dropping support in the US for the Clie (with absolutely no warning) and the underpowered Vaio tower I bought that had two power packs replaced in the year I owned it.  Sony had it more than I did.

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