Reading: Kindle Paperwhite or Kindle Fire

I got the $50 new kindle fire a few weeks ago. There are a lot of blogs and discussion board posts debating whether you should buy a paperwhite or fire. I won’t rehash the whole argument here. I do want to address one point that comes up repeatedly: “Buy the paperwhite if you want to read. Buy the fire if you want to read, play games, and surf the web.” That statement misses a very important detail.

I got the new kindle fire for 3 reasons:

1) I wanted the ability to download movies and TV shows from Amazon video.

Amazon Prime members can stream select movies and TV shows for free on mobile and video devices. You can only download video to an amazon device. This is handy for people who travel a lot on planes or trains where there is no wifi.

2) I wanted to be able to read all of my kindle books on a color screen.

Anything with color graphs or pictures is useless on the paperwhite. I’m currently reading the Game of Thrones series. Those gray scale maps aren’t cuttin’ it. Futhermore, Amazon Prime members can download one book a month for free from the Kindle Owners Lending Library. We can also read select books before they are released. These books cannot be read on an ipad or any other non-amazon device.

3) I wanted to see what kind of tablet you can get for $50: Yep, this is pure curiosity.

The statement

Earlier, I said that I wanted to address this statement: “Buy the paperwhite if you want to read. Buy the fire if you want to read, play games, and surf the web.” That doesn’t really cut it. Why not?

The paperwhite is a one trick pony. It does that one trick very well, but still. If you like to read blog posts, PDF articles, comics, textbooks; the paperwhite won’t get it done. If you can get your item into a select format so that you can email it to your kindle email address, it could work. A while back, I wrote a post about my new paperwhite and how you can send pocket articles to it. The paperwhite also lacks audio.

Textbooks and comics simply won’t work. So if you only want to read and you read more than novels, the paperwhite still won’t be your everything-reading device. No audio means no audio books or text to speech.

So that’s it. I just wanted to address the misinformation that I see floating on the internet. Comments? Share them below.