Even New Amazon Echo Gets 7″ Screen, But All We Get is 6″ Kindles


Amazon Echo Show

Amazon introduced a new Echo device today called the Echo Show that has a 7-inch screen to add video content to the usual Echo and Alexa assistant features.

It’s another example of how Amazon keeps evolving their Echo line of products, unlike Kindles that always seem to stay the same.

When I saw the news that Amazon had a new Echo, it got my hopes up that maybe they’d be announcing new Kindles and Fire tablets as well, but so far that hasn’t happened.

The new Echo Show officially gets released on June 28th, so that’s still pretty far away.

It sells for $229 or you can bundle two to get $100 off.

The new Echo Show has virtually nothing to do with ebooks, other than being able to read them aloud like any Echo device, but it goes to show that Amazon seems to be a lot more interested in advancing their other product lines than Kindles.

We’ve had nothing but the same 6-inch Kindles recycled in a new form for the past 6 years. Meanwhile other companies are releasing waterproof ebook readers and ereaders with 6.8-inch screens, 7.8-inch screens, 9.7-inch and 13.3-inch screens.

Why is it that Amazon offers a variety of Echo products, now including one with a 7-inch screen, along with three different Fire tablet sizes currently, but still all we get is 6-inch Kindles? Three of which have the same exact E Ink screen, while the other has a downgraded version from 6 years ago.

Hopefully Kindles will eventually get some worthwhile upgrades too.

23 Responses to “Even New Amazon Echo Gets 7″ Screen, But All We Get is 6″ Kindles”

  1. Yeah, the goodereader.com is running a kickstarter campaign to produce a 6.8″ ereader that natively supports android apps, and it could make us turn away from kindles. With such an ereader one can install Kindle, B&N, Kobo and Overdrive all on the same device. I hope their campaign is successful so that we can all have this option available. Oh, and it also would support hand written notes with stylus. Promises to be everything I would want in an ereader

    • Peter? Is that you?

      • Yeah, no kidding, huh? 😀 As if Android ereaders haven’t existed for years now that can install apps. I could never understand why anyone would take buying an ereader from a blogger seriously, especially ones with no proper customer support, or returns and warranty service, or software development experience to speak of. It’s like buying an off-brand TV from the back of some guy’s van who promises it will work just well as a top-of-the-line Samsung TV. 😀

        • I like the idea of a multi platform ereader…as long as it runs well. Obviously won’t be running animations on it.
          I think theirs may be better than the Prime. Not crazy about the wacom interface. I think the capacitive touch is enough for note taking.

      • Goodereader is not a solution to anything and a monochrome e-ink Android tablet is a terrible idea.

        There is a reason that Kindle, Kobo and Nook have their own operating systems … open the device cover and start reading. With a tablet, you have to turn the device on, navigate to the the app, open the app, find the book you were reading and finally open the book you were reading.

        An Android tablet e-reader makes the experience a long and irksome process.

  2. It seems that Amazons only option is to make the Oasis larger? How could they make a mid range larger than the Premium device….unless they lower the resolution.

    • Step one, introduce new flush-screen waterproof Paperwhite. Step two, discontinue Voyage and replace it with a 7.8-inch model for $229.

      • I totally agree with having a larger screen kindles. One that is as big as a hardcover book would be great which I think is bigger than 7.8 inch. I love the software on the kindles. It is very quick, fast and not at all laggy unlike the kobo ereaders which never seems to change much about the laggy software. I hope they will have few sizes for the kindles. A less than 6 inch model, a 6 inch model, a 7.8 inch model and one as large as a hardcover book. A less than 6 inch model for extreme portability. A hardcover size model for those who likes the feel of hardcover size book kindle in their hands.

      • What happens to the Oasis then?

  3. It does amaze me that Amazon has this whole environment around the Kindle… self-publishing ebooks, selling ebooks, printing to paper self-published ebooks … manufacturing and selling ebook readers… you can add to this what I missed…(oh, and audiobooks too, then they make the Kindle reader useless for that by taking out the headphone jack) and yet they cannot or will not make a bigger screen ebook reader.
    Other companies are coming in to filling the gap with larger screen size and readers you can write and draw on. I wonder if Amazon is starting to feel the pressure? Surely if they cared to read these comments and forums you’d think they’d have a clue to what’s going on…

  4. Oh, and I have an Echo and it’s only good for telling you the time, other than that “Sorry, I didn’t understand the question I heard”… or sometimes I will be sitting watching a movie and I’ll hear, “That items was added to your buying list..” or some such. I had to unplug her because she recently started losing her hearing :'(

  5. Am I the only one who actually loves the 6″ Kindle models? I have both the Fire HD8, Kindle paperwhite and I bought the Fire 7 for my kids. I prefer the Paperwhite to the HD8 because it is so much lighter and much more portable than the tablet. It fits easily in my purse or diaper bag and I can multitask easily when dealing with my toddlers and I’m at a good place in the book. If Amazon chooses to go bigger, then cool. I just hope they don’t do away with the 6″ models completely because this size is perfectly functional for a busy mom like me 🙂

    • Roxy, you are not the only one that loves the 6″ Kindles. I’m a grandma and I love it for the same reasons you do. Both the Kindle and my phone fit easily in my bag and go everywhere with me. Bigger is not always better. I have and iPad Pro but I choose to read on my small, lightweight Paperwhite.

  6. Well I love my Voyage and I have two Fire Hd Kindles and some android tablets. One tablet is 10 inches. My Voyage is my preferred ereader. I would not like it any bigger. It is very convenient and great for my reading vehicle, which I do a lot of. I am not spring chicken either. But all of this is just my opinion. Thanks 050917

  7. It’s not giving readers the option of a larger e-reader that is doing Amazon ecosystem readers the biggest disservice. It is about showing you care about the consumer. Would an 8″ reader be as popular as a Paperwhite…No- However readers deserve the option.

    • For those users who can’t see from 6″ screen can see 8″ screen without glasses.
      There is a real need to get 8″ screen.

      Content is many times a scanned PDF.

  8. Amazon’s dominance of the market means they don’t have to listen to consumers. Everyone complains but they still keep buying Kindles. If you really want to get Amazon to produce a bigger Kindle, go buy a Kobo Aura One.

    • Contrary to what others may think about production problems, I believe the Aura One has been selling well which is why it has seen limited stock. Everyone I know that has one raves about how it is a Kindle killer and loves it. And yet, people flock and buy Kindles because outside of my circle, nobody knows who or what a Kobo is. Which is why they need a retail presence in the US to make an impact.
      It’s not enough to tell people to go out and buy a Kobo in order stop stop a monopolian behemoth like Amazon.
      The Aura HD didn’t sway Amazon to go large, neither did the H2O, from what it seems neither has the Aura ONE nor the H2O edition 2. As for Amazon releasing a new Kindle for Mothers day, forget it.

      Amazon will continue to go down its path of “we dont give a crap what our customers want” path because dedicated eReaders are an extremely small niche market and the majority 99% of that tiny market doesn’t know what a Kobo is let alone are willing to shop outside of their comfortable spoiled Amazon Prime 2 day easy returns shopping habits.
      That would be like pulling teeth with people. Once again only a US retail presence by Kobo would possibly make an impact. I can only hope Google or Apple release a dedicated eReader for Amazon to take notice. Tablets were a fad nobody cared about until Apole released the iPad and became a big seller then everyone followed suit. It would take Apple and perhaps only Apple to make something happen for Amazon to start caring about customers needs and suggestions. Until then all we get is useless updates like a thinner 6″ Kindle with a crap leather cover that doesn’t work balf the time and useless software updates like faster page turns and faster highlighting, really? I’m done…(Mic drop)

  9. Meanwhile, there’s a discount on Oasis…

  10. You enslave customers with eco-system and platform, just look at Apple. When you do this you can cut corners on hardware and don’t need to have the best specs and flashiest design. As mentioned before Amazon has the smoothest software and cheapest and largest selection of books, not to mention a website as addicting as Google, Facebook and Wikipedia put together. When you have a monopoly on the industry and big corporations like Google and Apple don’t step up their game that means Amazon can get away with garbage 6″ kindles with uneven lighting, virtually no customization options, and no size options.
    The only thing that will fix this is if for some miraculous reason Kobo steps into the US market and starts selling Kobo’s in retail stores or for Google and Apple to widen their selection of ebooks, releasing a dedicated eReader while being more competitive with pricing. Its absolutely asinine for a company to have 4 iterations of the same product with virtually the same specs and software functionality. It’s a big middle finger to customers who have been pleading for options for many years now while being completely disregarded.
    My biggest beef however, is not so much with the infuriating lack of size options but the extremely limiting control on their software.

  11. I think you guys are missing the point. Amazon is listening to it’s readers and they want a 6″ device so that’s what Amazon makes.

    They tried a larger device and it didn’t sell. There must be a lesson in that somewhere.

    Kobo and Nook make waterproof devices and the vast majority of people buy Kindles. Anything to be learned from that?

    As to updating the Echo, it’s just the beginning of something new and it has a long way to go. The Kindle is a replacement for centuries old technology and it’s been made to work as much like that old tech as possible and it does it beautifully.

    Add to that that more and more people are reading on phones and what I hope for is that Amazon keeps on making Kindles. I use mine all the time. I gave reading on a phone a couple of months tryout and it actually worked pretty well but when I got back to the Kindle I was glad I did.

    We’ve been spoiled by the idea that tech keeps getting better but ereaders are very, very good and I’m not sure there’s a lot we can expect from Amazon now.

    Personally I doubt that ereaders are going to change much as long as they’re made by book sellers. They’re seen as tools to sell books. That’s it. And other reading devices, tablets, Echos, phones, etc. are as good and better at selling books and sell other products and services also.

    The next huge step in ereaders will come when Amazon stops selling them so others feel like they can compete. Probably not any time soon.

    Barry

    • Barry, the only reason the Amazon sells Kindles is because there is literally no competition. People have no choice as far as they know which is why Amazon slacks off and continues to throw up 6″ Kindles.
      Now the reason the Kindle is so popular is not because it’s so good but because once again there is no competition and because Amazon has a stable platform and great ecosystem and 2 day prime shipping with hassle free returns as opposed to the competition….not to mention a larger selection of books at cheaper prices. But it has absolutely nothing to do with great hardware or amazing software.
      When people eat fish their whole lives and have nothing to compare it to then fish taste pretty damn good. I was once on that same fishing boat until I was so frustrated that I went rogue and checked out kobo, did a little research on forums and was dumbfounded by all the options that are available. Now I despise Amazon for its shortcomings and deaf ear to its customers.
      If you check out the latest polls for the past couple of years you’ll see that another 6 inch Kindle is the very last thing that people want so that’s not Amazon listening to its customers. As far as them trying a larger Kindle, what was that back in what 2009 or 2010 or in better terms 7 years ago? And that was an oversized 9 1/2 inch device with a disrespectful PPI that offered no lighting whatsoever so we’re not comparing apples to apples here.
      This is not me harping on you but it’s that same ignorance that has Amazon forking out the same crap every year because people don’t know any better.

  12. I agreed with pretty much everything you said till the last couple of paragraphs. I think what you were describing was Amazon listening to their customers.

    As for the polls you mention at the end, I assume you mean on Mobileread, which I don’t think is representative of Amazon’s customer base.

    I have a Kindle which works extremely well; actually 4 of them, all three Paperwhites and a Voyage. I also have a couple of Kobo Auras and a Mini and it works pretty well most of the time. It has a few more features but they’re unreliable and on my side-loaded books fail as often as not.

    I have a Nook Glowlight Plus, which does seem more reliable but has some, for me at least, serious problems in it’s design.

    So yes, I think Kindles have excellent software and hardware. The competition has pretty good hardware too but that’s about all.

    As for customer service, ecosystem, etc. Amazon is the obvious big winner. To me that all adds up to their winning because they do a better job for their customers.

    I don’t have any interest in a water proof reader or a larger reader. I would like a smaller one, though, and I recognize that Amazon’s success is the reason I don’t have one. That’s not Amazon’s fault, exactly. It’s because they do a good job and nobody else wants to make an ereader.

    I’d love to see ereaders being made by people who don’t sell books so we could pick out the model with the features we wanted and then buy or books from the store we choose on that device. I’d get a 5″ e-ink reader shaped like a phone and I’d happily pay more for it. But that’s not going to happen.

    The problem isn’t Amazon. The problem is booksellers selling hardware and making it proprietary. It’s a system problem. We, the readers, have a system that doesn’t really work for us. It’s just to sell books.

    Barry

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