The following is a guest post by Stacey Kuyf as part of our Kindle Review Month here on Her Packing List!
I originally bought a Nook. It was flashy, colorful, and had a computer-like screen. I returned it two days later.
Don’t get me wrong — the Nook was cool, but it had too many bells and whistles. I already had an iphone and a laptop. I’d only be using an eReader for reading.
I bought my kindle on Amazon, and counted down the days as I waited for it to arrive. I’m a bit of a geek, and I read crazy-fast, so the idea of carrying around my bookshelf appealed to me immensely. I’d no longer be giving away my precious books when they wouldn’t fit in my backpack. I’d save money on replacing handbags as the heavy books I lugged around broke the straps, and there’d be no more walking on a lean with an aching shoulder.
Finally the Amazon box arrived. I instantly fell in love. I’m notoriously hard on electronics, but I swore I’d treat this like a baby.
I downloaded new books at the press of a button, and then winced at my bank balance a few weeks later. I whipped it out in line at the bank, at the supermarket, and in traffic jams, catching up on the free classics offered on the Kindle store. I read late into the night, and showed my new purchase off to all of my friends.
And then one night I woke up and stumbled out of bed to pee. I heard a crunch, looked down and gasped. My beautiful kindle had a screen that would never tell stories again.
I actually cried. I was broke (and probably hormonal), and I found myself sobbing like a baby. My favorite thing was dead. I googled furiously for a solution but there was none. All I could do was curse my clumsy foot, and mourn the loss of my friend.
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I caved in and bought another one a month later. And I sprung for a protective case this time.
Kindle number two has lasted me almost a year and it’s still going strong. I love the battery life, and I much prefer the book-like screen to one that’s lit up like a computer since it’s kinder to my eyes. Although the first one died when I crushed it with my big foot, I think my kindle is pretty resilient for its size. I’ve dropped it multiple times (both in the case and by itself), and I’m impressed with its durability.
The only problem is that if you do break the screen, there’s no real “fix” for it. Some people have found the kindle to be very fragile, and have had problems with the screens breaking in handbags etc, even in a protective case. If this happens within the one year warranty period, Amazon will sometimes replace it for free (although I didn’t know this at the time), but if you’ve had it for more than a year then you’re usually out of luck and have to buy a new one.
Some people say that they prefer the “authentic reading experience” of opening a real book. To me, a book is a book – either in paper form or electronic, all that matters are the words.
I’m not planning to upgrade any time soon, but if I did I’d definitely look at the Kindle paperwhite 3G. It has a back-light on it which would be handy for reading on planes, or in hostels, and apparently the battery life is exceptional.
>> Learn more about the Kindle 3 on Amazon, or by reading other Kindle user reviews right here on Her Packing List!3
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About the author: Since leaving New Zealand in October 2010, Stacey has been working and traveling overseas, first in North America, and now in Australia. She blogs about her experiences at One Travels Far and you can follow her on facebook or Twitter.
Melissa - The Mellyboo Project says
My mom broke her kindle well over a year after getting it – sent it back to amazon, and they sent her a refurbished top-of-the-line model for a mere $40 for replacement/shipping.
I had a Kobo. it broke on my 2nd day on my African overland tour… I was so unimpressed. When I finally returned home and emailed Kobo – hoping they had a similar policy to Amazon’s – they told me i’d have to buy myself a new one as they don’t do repairs or replacements. Grrrr.
The Kindle Paperwhite 3G is on my Xmas list this year. 🙂
Wow that’s such an amazing returns policy I wish I’d thought of it at at the time! Kicking myself right now!
Bethaney - Flashpacker Family says
I wish I’d bought a 3G. I don’t like the glare on the Fire.
I haven’t really had a good look at the fire. It looks pretty cool though! I must say I do love the screen on my kindle.
Travel with Bender (Erin) says
LOVE MY KINDLE! I’ve had it for about 3 years and it recently died. The screen just went black. I can’t wait to get another one, so excited!
Well since I’ve recently learned that amazon has a decent return policy you should definitely see what they can do before you rush in to buying one like I did!
I love mine too, I can’t imagine traveling without it!
I have been an avid kindle user since the K-2 circa 2008!! I now have the Paperwhite 3G and love it too. It saves me space, time, and money. Space being the most important thing to a Sailor! We get so little space on the ship, avid readers suffer. I was always giving books away, or sending them home, and then comes the trouble of begging a book once you’ve finished the last one. Problem solved. I will never go back to conventional books!
Awesome! I’m in love with the Kindle!
Meagan | LifeOutsideOfTexas.com says
I have a Kindle Fire HD and I LOVE it! It’s so great because I can use it to read, watch movies or play games. I bought an Otterbox (protective case) for it because I’m really accident prone as well. As soon as the new paperwhite comes out at the end of the month I’m going to order that. The Fire just doesn’t cut it when reading outdoors. I need one that I can take out by the pool or beach with me!
I have a simple touch nook and really love it. I am looking for recommendations from fellow travelers about ultralight case options that protect the screen. The nook itself weighs 7.5 ounces and my current case another 4.1 grams. Seems like there must be a better option out there for less weight that protects the screen. Any recommendations? Thanks!