- The Good
- Great screen resolution
- Long battery life
- Responsive display
- The Bad
- Basic design
- Limited features
- No audio features
The best aspect of this eReader is the screen (which is truly one of the most important things to look for in an eReader , after all). At 300 ppi, the display is easy on the eyes and matches the resolution of much more expensive eReaders, like the Kindle Voyage. The Paperwhite has a great backlighting option for when you’re trying to read at night that doesn’t strain the eyes. It’s still fairly basic and monochrome though, so if you want an eReader with a wider variety of features, this isn’t the one for you.
At $119 the Kindle Paperwhite is a great value for the money — far cheaper than Amazon’s more souped-up models, with many of the same features. It’s still pricier than the regular Kindle, but one of the cheaper models on the market with such a high screen resolution. For some additional features, like no advertisements or access to 3G, you’ll pay a bit more on top of the base price.
- 300 ppi
- Display Size
- Front-lit display, glare-free
- Holds thousands of books
- Battery Life
- 6 weeks
- 7.6 oz
The Kindle Paperwhite has very good resolution; highly improved from the first couple of iterations of this product. It is the same high resolution of the more-expensive version of Amazon’s eReaders. The display size is pretty standard; large enough to read, but small enough to comfortably hold the eReader in one hand. The front-lit display and glare-free screen are key for reading in the dark or in direct sunlight. These are not features that are yet standard on all eReaders. While it can hold thousands of books, you are limited to Amazon’s catalogue of books. The battery life on this eReader is excellent and improved from even the previous version.
- Connects to Wi-Fi and free 3G
- Comes in black and white
- New easier-to-read font, Bookerly
While the 3G option comes at an additional cost, this can be useful if you don’t want to be tied to finding Wi-Fi to download new books. While the overall look of the Kindle Paperwhite is pretty basic, adding the possibility of getting it in white is a nice new option to mix things up. The new font was the other major update made to the most recent version of the Kindle Paperwhite, and it makes the text slightly easier to read. It also helps solve some weird spacing issues that existed in previous versions.
- Book Selection
- Amazon book library
- Free public domain books
- Ability to share books with friends or family
This is definitely one of the most limited areas for all of the Amazon eReaders. While Amazon’s book collection is quite extensive and there are many free options, it would be nice to have the option to borrow books from your local library, or just not be tied to Amazon’s system. Though most of the books you are interested in reading should be available, it is something to keep in mind.
Kindle Paperwhite: User Reviews
The Kindle Paperwhite is widely seen as one of the best values and best all-around eReaders on the market, especially since this most recent update with the higher resolution screen.
The biggest advantage to this product is the high screen resolution, which is exactly the same as Amazon’s pricier models. The screen is really one of the most important features as well, because it is the aspect that you’ll be interacting with most frequently. While the screen is inset instead of flush like on the more expensive models, and the contrast is slightly lower, these are all pretty minimal distinctions that shouldn’t affect your experience with the eReader too much.
The new text, Bookerly, is also a huge boon in favor of this product. Previously, the text was harder to read and also frequently caused odd spacing to occur between words or paragraphs, making it look less book-like. The new text has fixed both of these problems.
How Does the Kindle Paperwhite Work?
The Kindle Paperwhite works pretty much the same as any other eReader. You download books right from the screen through your Amazon login. They are added to your “library” and then you can choose which book to read, and “turn” the pages by tapping the screen. One feature that this Kindle does not have that the more expensive versions do is a page-turning button. While the touch screen is quite responsive, some people do prefer having the ease of the page-turning button instead of relying on the touchscreen.
There are also some great features to enhance your reading experience such as Wordwise, which can offer definitions, synonyms and homonyms of words. This is a great resource if you’re learning a new language. It also has a feature called X-Ray, which allows you to get a sense for people, places and things in a book and how often they are mentioned. This can be very useful if you’re used to juggling multiple books at once. In addition, you access the social network, Goodreads, right on your Kindle, which allows you to log the books you’ve read, leave reviews and interact with friends.
What Can You Read on the Kindle Paperwhite?
You have access to Amazon’s vast library of books on the Kindle Paperwhite. With hundreds of thousands of options, you’ll likely find any book you desire available for you to purchase for a very low price. Additionally, if you have an Amazon Prime membership, you get free unlimited access to the entire library. There is also a wide selection of free public domain books available to download.
In addition to books, you can also subscribe to newspapers and magazines right through your account on your Kindle and have them delivered to you there each day, week or month. There is also a wide of selection of comic books and graphic novels to choose from. Both full-length and strip comics are available to download.
You can even download PDFs to read on your Kindle by connecting the Kindle to your computer through the USB port. If you have some documents for work that you need to read on-the-go this can be a fantastic option.
Common Reviews of Kindle Paperwhite
The general reviews are overall very positive, with 72 percent giving it five stars and 15 percent giving it four stars. People like the product a lot. The display is definitely the biggest draw for most reviewers. While many bemoaned the fact that there wasn’t a huge improvement from the 2015 model, they also acknowledged that there wasn’t much need for the improvement. It is generally agreed that the product offers great resolution and is very easy to read.
Most of the negative reviews center around the fact that you have to pay to remove ads, and some expressed a desire for a larger screen. The bevels on all Kindles are quite large, which is handy for holding onto the Kindle, but does reduce the actual screen size you’re looking at. Some also complained that the screen is still more gray than “paper white.”
Is Amazon Paperwhite for Me?
If you’re looking for an eReader with all the necessary features at a reasonable price, this is the perfect Kindle for you. Many have called it the best all-around Kindle because it has everything you need and nothing you don’t, which allows Amazon to keep the price down. It makes it an amazingly good value, especially with the screen upgrade making it clearer and easier to read, and the fact that you get the same resolution as more expensive models. While you might notice a slightly better coloring on the more expensive models, for a full $100 less the Paperwhite is very much worth the cost difference.