Marketed as the iPod for books, Amazon.com's Kindle is looking to change the way we read books and other print publications.
The sleek new gadget is an electronic book reader equipped with wireless connectivity for access to books, magazines and blogs.
Simply turn on the Kindle, and the device is automatically configured to access Amazon's Kindle store over the mobile network. You don't need a separate mobile plan, as Amazon includes that in the service.
It's not exactly paper thin, but it's pretty close, at about 2cm at its thickest part. Measuring 19 cm x 13.5 cm, the unit features a 6-inch E-Ink electronic paper display with a resolution of 600 x 800 pixels and 4-level greyscale.
There are more than 90,000 books in the store, and hundreds of magazine and blog titles. Prices vary, but purchase of electronic books with the Kindle offers savings of about 60 per cent on listed print prices, while newspaper and magazine subscriptions range from US$2 to $15 a month.
Now the complicated part: the Kindle won't exactly work here. It uses a CDMA network provided by Sprint in the US for the delivery of content, which obviously won't work in Hong Kong - although PCCW can theoretically offer it here over its CDMA network.
For now, you can buy the Kindle in the US for US$400, load up the internal memory and expansion cards with reading material, and use it as an offline electronic reader.
Pros: lightweight and thin, clear display, seamless wireless downloads (US only)
Cons: no colour, won't work outside the US, poor integration with PC
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