My Kindle Touch 3G arrived yesterday at the same time as the Kindle Fire. I spent most of the day on the Kindle Fire but gave the Kindle Touch a test drive before going to bed and then spent most of today with it.
The first thing I noticed is that it doesn’t have the same kind of pleasing feel as the Kindle 4. It’s noticeably thicker and heavier, and the screen sits deep in the frame, almost an eighth of an inch.
Still, the Kindle Touch is comfortable to hold one or two-handed, and the touchscreen responds well and is easy to use, especially turning pages because most of the screen is dedicated to paging forward, making it easy for left-handers too. Just tap or swipe.
I’ve noticed that the Kindle Touch has more problems with ghosting than the Kindle 4, where you can see an afterimage of the previous screen. The advertisements are especially good at becoming ghosts, and the on-screen keyboard too, because of the dark coloring.
Luckily the Kindle Touch has an option in the settings to refresh every page, and that helps. But overall the ghosting effect is more noticeable than other touchscreen ereaders.
The Kindle Touch is also slower than the Kindle 4, and I think that helps contribute to the ghosting. Side-by-side, the Kindle 4 loads and closes ebooks faster, the menus open faster, and pages turn slightly quicker too. I think Amazon needs some more time to improve on the firmware for the Kindle Touch, and I don’t doubt that they will. After all, it’s their first touchscreen ereader ever.
Look what Barnes and Noble just did with a firmware update to for the Nook Touch. It was pretty quick before, but now it is blazing fast, and it doesn’t have near as much ghosting.
I liked the fact that when I first turned on the Kindle Touch the 3G wireless was already connected and ready to download books without having to setup Wi-Fi (this is the first time I opted for a 3G Kindle). You can browse Amazon’s website and Wikipedia with 3G too, but you’ll need Wi-Fi for all other websites. The browser has been improved. It supports pinch-zooming and can open windows that trigger new windows. It can probably download library ebooks directly, but I haven’t tried yet.
When I tested the reading aspect of the Kindle Touch, I noticed a couple of things missing.
Holding down on a word brings up options to add notes, highlights, access the dictionary, and to share via Facebook and Twitter, but the option to search on Wikipedia and Google has been removed. The Kindle Touch has the new X-Ray feature that references Wikipedia and Shelfari for common terms in the book, so the feature is still there, just not for any word or phrase you want to choose.
Another common feature that is missing is landscape mode. It’s nowhere to be found while reading or using the web browser. Someone needs to send out a search party to find it.
It probably sounds like I’m complaining a lot, but all in all the Kindle Touch is a nice device overall if you want a touchscreen Kindle, and starting at $99 it is hard to argue with. There is still some room for improvement, though. It’s not yet as polished as the Kindle 4 and Kindle 3.
That’s enough details for now. I’ll post the full review after more thorough testing. Subscribe to keep updated.