Jeff Bezos tweets: 8th gen Kindle being announced next week
As I reported yesterday, Amazon is offering Prime members big discounts on their current Kindle EBRs (Kindle E-Book Readers):
- Seventh generation entry level Kindle” (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*) (my review) $49.99 ($30 off)
- Kindle Paperwhite 3 (at AmazonSmile*) (Kindle Paperwhite 2: first impressions and menu map) $89.99 ($30 off)
- Kindle Voyage (any configuration) (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*) $149.99 ($50 off)
Those are great prices! The Voyage, in particular, has rarely been discounted. This says it is for a limited time.
One of my regular readers, Robert Anderson, speculated that it might mean new models were coming.
I was ready to write a reply explaining that, while discounts can precede a new model release, the majority of the time they don’t. Amazon isn’t likely to need to clear out warehouse space for a new model, and it can be just as effective for them to discount it after a new model is released. I would have been technically correct…but Robert’s intuition was born out with this
It says that a new, top of the line Kindle is, “almost ready”.
It was amusing to me that people immediately responded to the Amazon CEO (Chief Executive Officer) with features they would like to see…I’m afraid that the design and development process takes more than a few days. 🙂
Hopefully, people have regularly been suggesting to Amazon what they would like to see in later Kindle models. You can e-mail
That said, there’s nothing wrong with speculating about what we might see or what you would want to see. 🙂
For me, the biggest thing is not what we might see, but what we might hear. 😉 Regular readers won’t be surprised to learn that I’m talking about text-to-speech (TTS). TTS is software which reads a book (or other item with text) out loud to you.
I use it for hours a week in the car, although I currently do it with my now discontinued Kindle Fire HDX. Amazon killed all audio in EBRs some time back…and I regularly see comments from people who miss it.
So, I do think that’s a possibility. I’ve seen a speculation that the new device might have Bluetooth…what would the purpose of Bluetooth (short range paired wireless connection between devices) do on an EBR if not connect audio? I suppose it could be for file transfer between devices, but that would really upend the current model of keying a file for a specific device.
There are a couple of other features which I would see as possible.
In my annual predictive/speculative post
I figured that a water resistant Kindle was likely, since that is playing catch up with competitors. That seems probable. By the way, I also suggested that the Supreme Court would decline to hear the Apple case, resulting in an effective loss, and that Amazon would shutter Shelfari…both have happened. 🙂 Knock virtual wood, no guarantee for anything else I said in that post.
The other big thing (and there is speculation about that), is that Amazon would finally introduce a Liquivista screen. Amazon announced they were buying the company back in 2013. It would be a way for us to have color on non-backlit screen.
is hiring right now, which suggests a business expansion.
Generally, Amazon has done better with affordable models rather than top of the line…but a color EBR might be considered a new type of device, and Amazon has made that work (the Kindle wasn’t the first EBR in the USA, but was different enough ((especially with its wireless connection)) to perhaps be considered a different device). The Amazon Echo (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*) appears to be an unqualified success, for example, and I was surprised by how much I enjoyed my first day out with my new Alexa Tap (at AmazonSmile*) yesterday (I’ll write about that in my The Measured Circle blog within the next few days).
Could this mean more than just a top of the line model? Could the entire line be refreshed?
Yes, that’s possible.
As I noted in
“generations” are different from models.
All three of the current Kindle EBRs are 7th generation…the 3rd Paperwhite, the touch screen least expensive version, and the current Voyage all have basically the same software.
Generations are based on software, not just hardware, really.
That also means we could see improvements to the Kindle service.
We just had a big interface update to Kindle EBRs, so I’m not sure how much we’ll see on the devices themselves. We might see a lot more at the Manage Your Content and Devices page…I’m hoping we would get much better content management (being able to see which book is currently on which device, for example).
The Alexa Voice Service doesn’t need direct connection to individual devices, generally. It can read a book to me based on the Cloud, not on where it is on my Voyage or Paperwhite. I suppose it could have better knowledge and purchasing. For example, I might be able to say, “Alexa, how much time is left in The Martian on Proteus?”
We’ll have a better idea on all of this next week. 😉
One more thing: some of the first comments to Jeff came from people upset because they just bought a Kindle EBR.
I never quite understand that.
If your device was a good buy before, it’s a good buy now. 🙂 Just because someone else might get something with more features, that doesn’t affect what features you have.
If you are within thirty days of purchase from Amazon, typically, you can return your Kindle for a refund. If it was performing as advertised, you would be expected to pay the return shipping, which should be no more than a couple of dollars.
What do you think? Are you ready for a new model? What features would you like to see? What would be enough to induce you to upgrade? Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.
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*When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. Shop ’til you help!
This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.