For years, I was adamant that I would never get an e-reader, mostly because of the fact that I love having the physical book way too much. I just didn’t think that it would be the same, and I couldn’t see myself ever actually using it or at least not enough to actually make buying one worth it. But it turns out that I was really, really wrong. I bought my e-reader a little more than a year ago.
I was getting ready to go on a long trip and, when I realised how painful it would be to bring a dozen books in my carry-on versus an e-reader, I realised that it was time to at least consider it. After a lot of research, I ended up picking the Kindle Paperwhite and it’s totally changed my mind about e-readers.
What Is The Kindle Paperwhite?
The Kindle Paperwhite is the midrange e-reader from Amazon — right between the Kindle and the Kindle Oasis. Amazon claim that the device is their lightest and thinnest e-reader yet, making it the perfect pick if you’re looking for a device to bring with you whether you’re commuting or headed on vacation.
The 2018 version I bought also has twice the storage of the previous version, which is always a good thing — because who could say no to more books?
What’s It Like To Use?
While it may be small in size, the Kindle Paperwhite is jam-packed with features that readers will love. And, thankfully, the lightweight e-reader is really easy to use — which is particularly handy if, like me, you’ve never had one before.
The software lets you tailor your reading experience, deciding on everything from the font size to the layout of the page. And, if you go to the Accessibility Settings, you can also invert the text, image and page colours on all of the screens. It’s also backlit, which is a nice upgrade if you’ve got an older Kindle.
Swapping it to be white text on a darker background will make it a lot easier to read in the dark without eye strain giving you the perfect solution if you’ve found yourself reading late into the night and don’t want to hurt your eyes.
The Kindle Paperwhite is also waterproof, which means that you can bring it with you to the beach or read in the bath without worrying about whether it’ll get wet. The device can survive in fresh water for up to 60 minutes at depths of up to two metres. While this was one of the selling points for me, I’ll admit that I haven’t tested out this particular feature yet — mostly because I’m nervous I’d still somehow manage to break it.
One of the surprise features I have enjoyed testing out, though, is the ability to listen to audiobooks through your Kindle. With the Paperwhite, you can upload all of your Audible titles and listen to them on-the-go using Bluetooth headphones or Bluetooth speakers. Rather ingeniously, if you own both the audiobook and the eBook version of the of the same book, you can alternate between the two — all without losing your place. That’s pretty mind-blowing so if you’re buying a Kindle, it’s a good time to use up your Audible trial.
The Paperwhite Battery Life
This was one of the biggest points of interest for me, as I wanted something that I knew would have a really, really long battery life. In the very least I didn’t want to have to charge every single day. The Kindle Paperwhite battery life promises to last up to six weeks, depending on how much you read per day. Other factors that impact the battery life are whether you’ve got the wireless on or off, and what you’ve got the light setting at. But while I’ve never gotten it to last the full six weeks, I’ve found I’m charging it every two to three weeks — sometimes, a little more often depending on my commute.
When the battery life does run out, though, it doesn’t take long for it to full charge. Amazon promises that the Kindle Paperwhite will be at full power in around three hours. If you’re charging it with a USB cable from a computer I’ve found to be pretty spot on.
Kindle Paperwhite: The Verdict
While my love for reading physical books hasn’t changed, I will say that the Kindle Paperwhite has been one of the best pieces of technology I’ve bought over the last few years. I’ve loved having my books with me wherever I am, whether I’m stuck in a long queue or sitting on the bus for my commute. And, since it’s so small and lightweight, it’s super comfortable to read whenever or wherever.
Since I’ve had the device, I’ve also found myself reading a lot more. With the recommendations at the bottom of the home screen, I have discovered some incredible reads that I might not have otherwise heard about. And since it’s so easy and comfortable to use, the Kindle’s also helped me become a faster reader.
You can pick up the Kindle Paperwhite for about €130 or €150 for the ad-free model.