New Kindle Paperwhite and $69 Basic Kindle

Kindle Paperwhite

Along with the new Kindle Fire tablets, Amazon announced the release of a pair of new Kindle E Ink ebook readers today, a new Kindle Touch called the Kindle Paperwhite that has a light built into the screen and an updated version of the non-touchscreen Kindle for $69.

The new Kindle Paperwhite ebook reader uses a high resolution screen with 212 pixels per inch. It provides 62% more pixels and 25% improved contrast over previous Kindles.

The Kindle Paperwhite also comes with a front light built into the screen much like the GlowLight Nook Touch and Kobo Glo. Amazon is using a patented nanoimprinted “light guide” to evenly distribute the light over the screen.

What’s more, Amazon says the Kindle Paperwhite can get up to 8 weeks of battery life even with the light turned on. Another interesting detail, it uses a capacitive touchscreen instead of the infrared touchscreens used on other ereaders.

At 9.1mm, the new Kindle is slightly thinner than the original Kindle Touch, but has the same weight: 7.5 ounces.

Some new software features include optimized fonts, faster page turns, and a new “Time to Read” feature that estimates how long it will take to finish a chapter or the entire book based on your average reading speed.

The Kindle Paperwhite is up for pre-order right now from Amazon and is expected to start shipping on October 1st. The price is $119 for the WiFi model and $179 for the 3G version. Those include Special Offers. The ones without screensaver advertisements cost $20 more.

Amazon also updated their basic non-touchscreen ebook reader and dropped the price from $79 to just $69. That’s the ad-supported model, of course. The non-ad version is $20 more. It has a new darker color but otherwise appears to be unchanged. The new non-touch Kindle is up for pre-order and starts shipping on September 14th. Here’s a picture of it:

$69 Kindle

21 Responses to “New Kindle Paperwhite and $69 Basic Kindle”

  1. The Time To Read and Paperwhite features peaked my interest. I am really hoping that the capacitive touch layer won’t be an issue though. It would be a shame if the HD pixel concentration only kept things looking as good as they did before without the capacitive touch layer! I will continue refreshing the Amazon homepage until an order option comes up.

  2. Nathan, I’ll be interested in learning about the screen lighting when you get a hold of one of these readers. The resolution of the screen is the same as the Onyx Boox i62HD, and Kobo HD e-readers based on the 62 percent more pixels comment. What’s also amazing is being able to read more full page content on the 6 inch screen with the improved pixel resolution. The next iteration in monochrome (B&W) screens should be 256 shades of grey, then you’ll get photo quality pictures which should be pretty impressive.

  3. I just ordered mine. It’s interesting, the cost difference between the ads and non-ads versions has dropped. Now there is only a $20 difference. I still ordered the ad-supported edition; I find them unobtrusive, and I could spend that saved $20 on ebooks.

  4. Eh, I’ve made my ebub bed and I’ll keep lying in it. Not that conversion is a big deal but there will need to be alot more improvements to get me to bother.

  5. If these buttons and menus are not from Android…

    (also for Paperwhite)

  6. I don’t like anyway the removal for old physical buttons.

    Their location, working and features were always quite useful, a big plus for Kindle design. Both new simple and touch (paperwhite) should have keep them.


  7. I am tempted but will hold out until B&N announces their new products. I still have hope for a revolutionary new screen tht has been talked about. I resd somewhere that one of the new Kindle tablets has been optimized for reading, have you heard anything?

  8. The Paperwhite does not have speakers so I don’t think it can “Whispersync for Voice to sync audiobooks and ebooks”.

  9. So have I got this right, looking at the specs on Amazon the Paperwhite loses 2GB of storage & all audio functions compared to the old touch?

    If so I think the price increase for the paperwhite is quite steep & checky of Amazon just for the addition of a light and a small increase in screen resolution (which isn’t a big issuwe with the previous screen res).


  10. Seems like Amazon are now taking the same route as B&N has with their eInk readers. Apparently they believe (likely correctly) that most people buying eInk devices basically just want to read books. Anybody who wants to do more than that should by one of the tablets.

  11. Thanks to the price wars between all of the major ereader brands, we are in the era of the no frills ereader. Gone are the days of metal casings and full audio, text-to-speech and free 3G web browsing. The quality of materials took a dive after the Kindle 3. The speakers on the Kindle Touch sounded ten times worse than the K3 anyway. I’m holding out hope that the Paperwhite will trade better resolution and construction for the audio. Although I never used it much, I did like to listen to news articles on text-to-speech while I worked on my computer. I’m glad I still have my K3.

  12. It was very disappointing for me. My aunt just bought me the basic Kindle last week for $79, and now Amazon released a better version for $10 less. And now it’s too late to change the order. I wish Amazon could have advised us during check-out. We don’t care about the $10, we just prefer to have the new Kindle 4–better font and 15% faster page turn.

  13. Help to return AUDIO to kindle! September 11, 2012 at 12:53 pm

    Everyone who want audio to return to Kindle Paperwhite PLEASE CONTACT with Amazon and say it
    – if more request they will get, then there is more chance that they will fix it!

    Contact directly with Amazon by:
    – email
    – chat / phone / contact form at website:



    • I think text to speech capability is better suited for a tablet than an e-ink device, and my guess is so does Bezos. That is why I think we will see an update to the Android version in the near future.

  14. Help to return AUDIO to kindle! September 12, 2012 at 1:36 pm

    Please let me to clear up.

    Without audio support we lose:
    -MP3 audio (useful for listening to music while you read)
    -Text-to-Speech for having the Kindle read the book to you
    -audio books (like this from

    By audio “return” to Kindle Paperwhite I mean this book reader is next revision of Kindle Touch which was with audio feature.

    I know that not everyone agrees with me about Audio in kindle,
    but this is all right – in the world there is no way that everyone will agree with everyone with any topic 🙂

    I realize that Kindle primary function is read text books,
    and I also can prove you I love read text books,
    but I expect something more with this device class.

    Some people say they need only specyfic set of functions in Kindle, and the rest Amazon should remove because this is unnecessary additional cost,
    but please be realistic, thinking like that Amazon should release thousand of Kindle versions for different customers,
    none company will do that cause they will be wreck ;->

    According to Kindle price I think its very fair – Amazon selling it without profits to herself.

    Today device should be universal, one for milions of people with different feature preferences.
    Kindle devices have many features… social networks, dictionaries, parental controls, highlights, screen rotation, internet browser, wikipedia, searching, collections, font size, font type, games, clock, 4GB memory, lighted screen or audio.
    Think about it – I’m sure nobody use them all, but many features means this device is universal to many people – not only to you…

    I’m not naive – I understood that Amazon can’t add audio to Paperwhite immediately,
    I know, modification like this need hardware and software change and this will take some time.
    By writing this feedback I want to send message to Amazon to known them with customer needs to next version of Kindle Paperwhite.

    I’m sorry for previous post format with CAPS LOCK letters, someone seen this like yelling and whining…
    I not want to spam you, I only want to say my opinion as customer of Amazon – I think I have right to that.

    I can write about it more my thoughts but please write also yourself fellings what you expect to your ideal Kindle device.
    Personally I write about Audio because I’m not native english and reading books with TTS support will improve my speaking abilities.

    One more time – if you want say your Kindle device feedback please contact with Amazon by:
    – email
    – chat / phone / contact form at website: