The Kindle has hardly changed in almost a decade. Sure, it’s had some incremental improvements — slightly nicer e-ink screen, waterproofing, OS tweaks, removal of all physical buttons — but the basic unit is much the same as it has been for years.
Kindle’s rivals compete by exploring new directions (front-lit screens, smaller versions such as the short-lived Mini, “warm light” amber LEDs, and more), while Amazon…
It’s easy to make the case for a Kindle. It’s portable, you can read it in the dark, and it makes it dumb easy to download a book from Amazon almost instantaneously. But it’s still a device, standardized in a few different forms — the Oasis, the Paperwhite, and so on — lacking the personal touches you’d get in a book with that aged-paper smell, margin notes, dog-eared pages, whatever. …
When David Pogue reviewed Amazon’s original Kindle e-reader for the New York Times back in 2007, he asked a simple question: “Are they completely nuts?”
“Printed books are dirt cheap, never run out of power, and survive drops, spills, and being run over,” he continued. “And their file format will still be readable 200 years from now.”
Fast forward 12 years and the Kindle, along with its iOS and Android apps, now dominate the e-reading market.
Have they killed physical books? Of course not. But they were never meant to.
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