Amazon’s new top tier e-reader is nothing short of impressive, it’s called the Kindle Voyage and does just about everything the Kindle Paperwhite couldn’t.
Amazon has been working on having a full range of e-readers from low range to high range and now it’s safe to say they have all e-reading needs covered. The highest end – the new Kindle Voyage – will be retailing for $199 and you can expect to pay $50 or $60 more for a 3G version.
The Kindle voyage is a major upgrade to the Paperwhite – it is thinner and lighter and is just a smidge smaller than its predecessor. The pixel density has been increased on the Kindle Voyage meaning it now just surpasses 300 pixels per inch, making this the closest to reading an actual book than ever before!
Even when you decrease the text size all the way to the lowest setting, the text is still impeccably sharp and readable. With the higher resolution and higher black and white contrast, this is the best reading I’ve done on a tablet device. The black letters on white paper is obviously not as sharp and real as an actual book, but it is quite an improvement to the Paperwhite. It doesn’t strain your eyes as well, meaning you can read your favorite Grisham novel to the wee hours of the morning.
The light sensor on the front means you don’t have to adjust the brightness manually, it decreases as your environment gets darker and increases as you surround yourself in lumens. A one hour go on the Amazon Voyage made me feel at ease and I could actually immerse myself in what I was reading without having to make any adjustments or leave the e-book to go make any tweaks to my reading experience.
The Kindle Voyage is so well designed that it hardly feels like you’ve shifted your reading experience to electronic, it’s so smart that it adjusts gradually over time, in harmony with how the human eye adjusts to darkness over time.
The front is very pleasing to the eye; the screen is made totally of glass and it sits flush with the corners, making it look like a single block of glass. Amazon’s move to remove plastic is very pleasing and the glass also has micro cross brushes making it matte so that it is almost entirely non-reflective in the sunlight or under a lamp.
The Kindle development team have said that they have put their pen to paper and tried to mimic the texture of paper and after an hour on the device I can say that it really does feel like I’m looking at more paper than glass.
Having a completely touchscreen front is a great feature that I found very pleasing to the eye but people who have been with Kindle from the start might have quarrels with the lack of buttons at the bottom or sides. Amazon has opted to bring in a feature that they call PagePress, which is a pretty cool touch!
When you squeeze the sides of the tablet, the bezels sense this and the device vibrates when the page is turned. I loved this feature as it is quite sensitive and doesn’t require you to press down hard. It’s better than having to move your hands to the centre of the screen to turn the page and although I find it a great upgrade to buttons or touchscreen flicking, I still think there could be another upgrade in the next Kindle device that makes it feel even more real, as if you were turning the page, I don’t know what this could be and it’s not a major problem but it will be a beautiful touch.
Amazon is also adding more features to the Kindle range including a feature Amazon has dubbed Word Wise. Word Wise expands on-page text and makes little shifts to readjust the page when it wants to give you little hints on what you are reading, such as definitions or backstory.
Another cool feature is Family Library, which Amazon found necessary when they received tons of complaints from people who can’t lend their family members their e-books and instead had to resort to lending them their Kindle.
The only thing missing is this years and 2013’s biggest gimmick (but also biggest improvement) in technological devices: waterproofing. It’s only a matter of time before Amazon brings a waterproof update to its range of e-book readers meaning it’s only a matter of time until I can read Game of Thrones in the tub!