Got my new Kindle 3 DX yesterday in the mail. Larry has commandeered my smaller Kindle 2. Actually we’ll share. It’s nice to be a two Kindle family. See my other posts on my Kindles here. Oh and any book I downloaded on my Kindle 2 is available to load on the new Kindle as well.
Many of you know that I was pretty excited about my Kindle 2. See all my previous posts on it here. This week, Amazon.com announced that they will release the new Kindle 3 DX this summer which has a larger form factor (9.7-inch diagonal screen). Other key enhancements include the following:
More storage – 3,500 hundred books instead of 1,500 on the Kindle 2
Native PDF reader on board where as the Kindle 2 required conversion
Accelerometer on board which is the technology that causes the screen to move from portrait to landscape when you rotate the device 90 degrees. VERY COOL! I believe Amazon refers to the feature as an “Auto-Rotating Screen.”
The DX using the same electronic-ink technology that prints digitally to the screen and is amazingly readable. Images are even more incredible to view than text. And it uses the super fast Sprint national high-speed (3G) data network that Amazon refers to as Whispernet (at no CHARGE!).
Man I wished I had had this when I was in engineering school. You try carrying a ginormous calculus textbook that covers Calc I, II, and III, physics for engineering book, chemistry, statics, and all the lab books around all over campus in a backpack!
Great for work, school, and pleasure. Highly recommend.
Amazon hit my mailbox with their announcement about the launch of a Kindle application for the iPhone and iPhone Touch. This effectively makes available to iPhone users the 240,000 books currently in the Kindle Store. I know my previous posts on my new Kindle 2 (see below) generated a lot of discussion so I’ll be interested in whether any of you iPhone users plan to give this a try. I have an iPhone Touch and will give it a go myself. I’ve heard some of you say that you have some challenges reading books on your iPhone so will be interested in your thoughts. I’m assuming the size factor is one of the key issues.
Of note, I’ve read posts around the net about rumors of a larger Kindle targeted toward the student market. I’ve heard it would be 81/2 by 11 inches and thus perfect for textbooks and storing school documents or journal reading assignments. VERY COOL if it happens. The Kindle 2 missed some rumored launch dates so rumors are rumors.
It will be interesting to see if Amazon will port their application to other phones and networks in the near future. Sprint’s Instinct, HTC Touch, and the upcoming Palm Pre (I want one) would seem to be excellent options.
What this does signal is another way to quickly download, carry, and read not only books in print but the myriad of “public domain” documents available, many being primary source material. See my previous post here on just a few of those titles already loaded on Amazon for download at either no charge or minimal charge that should be of interest to those into 19th century American and / or the American Civil War.
Here are quick links to the previous posts on Kindle 2. I recommend, if you are intrigued and considering a Kindle 2, that you read the comments.
I’ve spent some time at the Kindle Store perusing their books for deals on American Civil War Books. I’ll follow up with additional lists on Military History and History in general although they are numerous. One plus – many of the Army Field manuals are available for $0.99, You could, of course, download most of the latter from other sites and load to you Kindle as well.
Here’s my list so far of ACW books that are free or under $2.00 in the Kindle Store. Bear in mind that most of these are in the public domain so you can also load them to your Kindle 2 for free in the manners I described in previous posts.
So in my last post, I was saying you could get public domain books to your Kindle for 10 cents if you wanted to find them and upload them for conversion by Amazon and send to you wirelessly. I just found a terrific Kindle Blog that has the following post that indicates that in late January, Amazon loaded 4700 Public Domain Books to their Kindle Store. This saves the hassle of uploading. The post on February 7 indicates that there are 7000 Public Domain books available on the site now. Amazing!
So I just went out to the Kindle Store. Remember that Phil Sheridan’s Memoir that I uploaded and then crossloaded? It was already there on the Kindle store for free broken into parts.
There has been a lot of interest in my Kindle 2 since last night’s post here. Harry Smeltzer from Bull Runnings has asked some great questions that have led to a little experimentation on my part. You’re welcome to follow in the comments on the original post but here’s some information many of you will find helpful. Also, I made a correction to my original post. Amazon doesn’t convert files you upload for conversion to PDF but rather to Kindle (.AZW, .AZW1). This is what it sends to your Kindle wirelessly or that you can download from the site and move to your Kindle via USB. Read below for more details. I have the same interest Harry does in reading public domain books on the Kindle.
—Snip from comments—
It sounds like I should be able to download pdfs into the device myself, and would only need Amazon if I wanted something converted to pdf. Or would I need to go through Amazon anyway to get it into a format compatible with Kindle? The reason I’m so nagging about this is that I would love to be able to read these public domain books (thousands available for free from various sources, including Google) on something other than a computer.
I took the plunge and bought an Amazon Kindle 2. This was a tough decision because (here’s where my family roll their eyes) I’m a bit obsessive about my books. But there are times when I’d really like a book NOW. So I’m considering this an expensive experiment. Here are my impressions so far.
Packaging was very cool. Nicely done.
Instructions were very easy to follow. I was up and running in seconds.
The device came set up and registered so I didn’t have to register it. I could start browsing the Kindle store and downloading.
I bought the standard leather case (see below) and I’m glad I did. It lets me feel like I’m holding a real book which I like.
The Whispernet technology was amazing. Well done Sprint.
It came with The New Oxford American Dictionary loaded for free which is always handy.
I can preview books for free.
I’ve bought already The Peloponnesian War by Thucydides, Richard Crawley ($0.99) which I ordered from the Kindle itself.
I then ordered – via my computer on Amazon’s site – David Liss’ book, The Whiskey Rebels: A Novel– and with one click, it was automatically sent to my Kindle 2. It was done in seconds. Sweet! And I paid $9.99.
I can also download and listen to audiobooks but these I must download to my Mac and then transfer to the Kindle. The unit has two speakers and a headset jack.
The Kindle comes with text-to-speech technology so i can have any text book read to me if I choose. The voice intonation is not at all bad. It’s not a performance but it’s quite functional.
I can archive content on Amazon’s site and reload anytime I want which is great. No need to hook up to the computer or store on an external harddrive.
I can bookmark, mark up, highlight, and add notes to what I’m reading.
I can store personal documents. I can send any document to my Kindle email and Amazon will convert it to pdf [CORRECTION – IT DOESN’T CONVERT TO PDF BUT A PROPRIETARY FORMAT but read the comments for more options] for free and ship it back to my computer. To send it to the Kindle, they will charge a small fee. This is one of their “experimental” features.
I can transfer MP3s to my Kindle to listen to music while I read. The transfer would be from my Mac.