Rumor: Amazon to Release Premium Kindle Paperwhite with 300ppi Screen and Updated Design

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TechCrunch has posted an article about a new Kindle Paperwhite that they have supposedly seen and that is supposedly going to be released early in the second quarter of 2014.

Given the fact that Amazon just released the Paperwhite 2, I have my doubts about the story, but then again someone at TechCrunch seems to have it in with someone at Amazon because they often leak details about upcoming Kindles that turns out to be true (it’s almost as if Amazon selectively chooses to release information like this at specific intervals throughout product development, like they are trying to gauge interest and opinion before committing).

According to the article, Amazon is prepping a new Kindle Paperwhite with a super high-resolution 300 ppi E Ink screen. The new Kindle is said to have an updated design more in line with the Kindle Fire tablets, with a flush edge-to-edge screen, angled edges, and rear power button placement.

Amazon is also said to be bringing back page-turning buttons. Sort of. Not physical buttons but senors in the frame that detect pressure and give off haptic feedback when pressed.

Another possible hardware upgrade is the addition of an ambient light sensor that automatically adjusts the frontlight brightness based on lighting conditions.

What it sounds like is Amazon is basically trying to figure out how to stick an E Ink screen in a tablet’s casing. And they are using the Kobo Aura and Kobo Aura HD as inspiration. After all, the Kobo Aura is the first ebook reader to have a flush screen, and the Kobo Aura HD has the highest resolution E Ink screen at 265ppi.

That’s a good reason why I think there could be some truth to this new Kindle rumor. I could see Amazon releasing a premium version of the Kindle Paperwhite at a higher price while keeping the current model around, much like Kobo has done with their Aura ebook readers.

It would be great if Amazon would bring back the Kindle DX or some other larger-screen E Ink Kindle, but the article at TechCrunch doesn’t mention anything about a size change with the prototype they saw. Things could easily change in a few months down the line. It will be interesting to see how this all turns out.

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10 Responses to “Rumor: Amazon to Release Premium Kindle Paperwhite with 300ppi Screen and Updated Design”

  1. After weeks of waffling between the Google Nexus 7 FHD and the Kindle HDX, I have made up my mind to get both. Not at the same time, of course. I’ll get the Nexus 7 first, since it’s more affordable and more android-oriented. Kobo and Nook failed to impress me with their tablets and e-readers.

    I guess I might get a Kindle Paperwhite HD, if they’ll name it that. I see no reason to get it, but I’d have the reason when it arrives and if it’s cool enough.

  2. If this rumor ends up being true, the next Paperwhite should be awesome and a definite must-have upgrade.

    • Until Amazon starts putting expandable storage on their Kindle PW’s (or beefs up their e-reader storage to at least 4GB) they are not must-have upgrades.

      Agree with Nathan — if they do this it will probably be a higher end (more expensive) model — and they will continue to sell the regular Kindle PW as well.

      • It would be nice to see them increase the base storage available on the device. On the other hand, with the stock storage supposedly capable of holding up to 1100 books or something like that along with “infinite” cloud storage, I don’t see the hurry to increase the storage on the device.

        • Leopold — Sure if you only have e-books ( I would completely agree with you. However PDFs will eat into that quickly, and so will comic books and magazines.

          My PDF reference library right now is slightly over 4GB.

          And the “cloud” is a poor workaround — I need my references wherever I am at — not just when I have a WiFi connection.

          Granted my use case might be a little extreme… but 2GB for me — just isn’t enough. I really like Amazon as a company, but until they fix this — I will never own a Kindle.

          • I understand where you’re coming from. I really never did understand why they shipped these type of devices with such low capacities regardless of how small ebook and PDF files may be. I think 8GB would be a great starting point along with the expandability of a memory card if one so desired.

  3. A year ago I spent a fair amount on the Kindle Paperwhite. Now the Kindle HD 7″ can be had for that same amount. It might be all over for e-ink unless an HD Paperwhite can come along to revitalize the e-reader field. When the time comes I might get one just for being the hot new gadget of the day.

    • Not necessarily… nothing beats eink for outdoor reading and battery life. The paperwhite is no tablet, but it really isn’t attempting to be or replace one. It’s a great ereadet for all conditions that happens to add a few features. I agree that it should offer 8 or 16 gb of storage, though.

  4. I am 100% excited for this. My ideal e-reader is a front lit, HD paperwhite with a larger screen and go back to the exquisite buttons on the Kindle 4. They got it so right, why did they change? Anyway I would pay in the $200 range right now for one. The Kobo Aura HD screen isn’t bright enough.

  5. I am looking for a bigger size (around 10″) kindle touch that would suitably fit the pdf page.

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