The KindleDX. This is probably the least known of all the Kindles, but that doesn’t mean it’s not great!
What is it about the Kindle DX that makes it so special?
It’s size…it’s much bigger than all the other Kindles (and other e-readers for that matter) which puts it in a class of it’s own. Admittedly, it’s not for everyone, but it definitely is the one for some people.
The Kindle DX still comes with the same eInk as all the others to it’s still incredibly restful to read, but because of it’s size you can see more of the page, increase the size of the text even more, or even see small graphs and pictures clearly.
The screen measures a whopping 9.7″ across the diagonal which is an absolutely huge reading area!
Despite the size of the screen being so large, Amazon have managed to keep the Kindle DX small on the surrounding areas…it’s just about a third of an inch thick! The Kindle DX uses a keyboard rather than a touch screen, so there’s room for that slotted in under the screen. All in all the DX comes in at 10.4″ x 7.2″, which although being too big for your pocket, is still quite respectable. It still only weights about 19 ounces too.
Amazon states that the battery life is about 2-3 weeks! Though that is with WiFi turned off and reading for only half an hour a day.
Now, I read for a lot more than half an hour a day and for those commuters amongst you I would imagine you’d probably end up using it for more than half an hour a day too. But let’s get down to basics here…
My aim with my Kindle was to be able to read it when I wanted without having it beep at me telling me I needed to recharge it….could this be done?
Looking at it logically, if I were to read for half an hour a day, for 3 weeks (21 days roughly) that would give me at least 10.5 hours of reading time. When I was commuting, I used to travel for an hour in the morning, another hour in the evening, and then I’d want to read for about half an hour before bed…so that would work out to 2 and a half hours a day. I figured that would easily allow me to read my Kindle whenever I wanted to during the day without needing to recharge, so I would just plug it in at the weekend.
Admittedly this is all worked out with the caveat of having the WiFi switched off, but then I didn’t have a WiFi connection on the train so I wasn’t missing out on anything! The only time I ever use the WiFi connection is to download a new book so it’s not something that I need on all the time (therefore why use up battery on it!).
I hope I haven’t scared you into thinking that the battery isn’t powerful enough. I have to say that I have never had issues with running out of battery. When the battery gets low the Kindle displays a warning message which you can dismiss and carry on reading. When I’ve finished that session of reading I just plugin my Kindle for about half an hour and off I go again.
Just for the record Amazon states that the Kindle takes 3 hours to charge, though I’ve never experienced this…it’s never taken any longer than an hour for me to get it to register as fully charged, I assume that’s because it’s never charging from completely empty (even when it was brand new it was charged…those kind people at Amazon understand the way I work and it came fully charged straight out of the box…no annoying wait for the battery to charge when I wanted to play with my new toy!!!).
The Choices Available
The Kindle DX doesn’t have the choices like the other Kindles…you can only get it with 3G (although it does have Wi-Fi as standard too), it only comes with a keyboard, not a touchscreen and Amazon haven’t released a ‘Special Offer’s version to help offset the cost.
Let me explain about 3G…
The easiest way is using 3G. With 3G you are permanently attached to the mobile phone network (for free! forever!!!). Therefore, no matter where you are, as long as you have access to a 3G mobile network you can download books and games to your Kindle. If for some reason you can’t access the 3G network e.g. you’re on the subway, then the 3G network automatically reconnects once your Kindle finds it again.
The second easiest way is using a Wi-Fi network. Lots of people now have Wi-Fi networks set up in their offices and even in their homes. There’s also free Wi-Fi networks popping up all over the place, from Starbucks to MacDonalds, libraries, public buildings, restaurants even some shops have them. So, even if you don’t have access to a Wi-Fi network in your own home or workplace, you may still be able to get by by going for the odd coffee everytime you want to download a new book!!
The third way is via a computer. Every Kindle sold comes with a cable that allows you to connect your Kindle to a computer for charging purposes (either a PC or Mac…it doesn’t matter). The other way to put books onto your Kindle is to ‘drag’ them there! When you connect your Kindle to your computer, your computer just sees your Kindle as an ‘external storage device’. You can download your ebooks from Amazon, store them on your computer and then click and drag them to your connected Kindle. This is the way you would get non-Amazon stuff on your Kindle too…it’s really easy to do and though it’s not as swizzy as Whispersync, you don’t need to be a techie to do it!
One thing to note though, according to many people I’ve spoken with, you can’t ‘surf the web’ on 3G…that facility is there only to communicate with Amazon, so you can visit their bookstore and download your books, but if you wan’t to surf other web pages then you need to have a connection to a Wi-Fi network. (I haven’t seen anything on Amazon stating this in so many words, but this is what I hear on the grapevine and I wanted to warn you).
Amazon have promised ‘No monthly payments, no annual contracts for their 3G service. Download books anywhere, anytime’. The Kindle uses the same wireless signals as cell phones, so with 3G you don’t need to worry about Wi-Fi connections, passwords or internet charges and Amazon will pay for Kindle DX 3G’s wireless connectivity! Forever! Wow!
If you don’t have a Wi-Fi at home (or work), you can also download your books from amazon to your computer. When you connect your Kindle to your computer using the supplied cable a little window opens up automatically on your PC or Mac. You then browse to where you downloaded your book and drag it to the new window. When you’re done you simply disconnect your Kindle and you’re ready to go 🙂
If you are completely about which Kindle is right for you, don’t worry…head on over to my Which Kindle? Quiz page and after just a few questions I’ll let you know which Kindle suits you best! 🙂
Games and Apps
For someone that’s interested in playing games as well as reading books, the Kindle DX could be the one for you, especially if you like word games. Although having the touchscreen on the Kindle Touch would make some games easier to play, having the keyboard pop-up and cover the screen content could be quite annoying. With having the physical keyboard, you also know exactly which key you are pressing, and you know you’ve pressed it too! At the moment, the games are mainly word based like Scrabble or word searches, anagram games and such like, but more and more apps are being written for the Kindle all the time. New releases out recently include diaries, calendars, note taking apps, puzzle games and even those role-based books that were really popular in the 80′s…fab on the Kindle!!!! So, I guess it’s personal preference as to whether to go for a touch screen or a keyboard.
Why would you go for the DX instead of one of the others?
I guess the main reason to go for the DX rather than one of the other Kindles is obvious…it’s the size. I wouldn’t recommend this Kindle to commuters wanting to catch up with a book on a crowded train, it might be a bit big, but if you’re planning on reading a lot of newspapers on your Kindle then this format might be the best option for you.
The size also makes it ideal for older people, you can really set the text size to be very large, great for those of us whose sight isn’t as good as it once was. Plus, having the keyboard is probably going to be easier for them to handle…I know my Gran thinks so. The increased size isn’t too much of an issue when you’re not carrying it around in your pocket or purse, but using it mostly at home.
Size might also be important to you if you plan to be reading lots of technical documents with diagrams, charts and graphs…I have to say that the larger screen size on the DX makes this kind of task much more comfortable.
Just about everything! Amazon have created a really unique e-reader with the DX. There is really nothing like it to compare it with.
With both Wi-Fi and 3G you’ve got no problems getting hold of books/games and apps.
You still get all the advantages of the e-Ink
Fab battery life!
Great amount of storage… The DX version of the Kindle is capable of holding 3,500 books!
If you are a student and plan on using your Kindle as a study aid, having the ability to take notes using a physical keyboard may well be easier than using a touch screen.
Like I said over on the Kindle Touch page, I can’t really think of anything, but I feel in order to provide a balanced review I need to pick something…so I’m going to go with the fact that Amazon don’t let you surf the web with the 3G (but considering that Amazon are supplying the 3G for free, forever, I don’t really think this is them being mean! I think it’s just the compromize they’ve come up with to enable them to keep it free…like I say, I feel like I needed to pick something and this was all I could come up with!).
If you’d like to check out more information about the Kindle DX, check out the full details over at amazon.com
Do you have a Kindle DX?
I would love to hear your comments and opinions on the Kindle DX. Please click the button below and let me know your thoughts
|Display||Amazon’s 9.7″ diagonal electronic paper display with eInk, optimized with proprietary waveform and font technology, 16-level gray scale.|
|Size (in inches)||10.4 x 7.2 x 0.4 inches.|
|System Requirements||None, because it’s wireless (3G) and doesn’t require a computer. Check wireless coverage.|
|Storage||About 3500 books.|
|Battery Life||A single charge lasts for up to 3 weeks with wireless off based upon a half-hour of daily reading time.
Keep wireless always on and it lasts for up to 1 week. Battery life will vary based on wireless usage, such as shopping the Kindle Store, web browsing, and downloading content. In low-coverage areas or in EDGE/GPRS-only coverage, wireless usage will consume battery power more quickly.
|Charge Time||Fully charges in approximately 3 hours via the included U.S. power adapter. Also supports charging from your computer via the included USB 2.0 cable.|
|3G Connectivity||HSPDA modem (3G) with a fallback to EDGE/GPRS; utilizes Amazon Whispernet to provide wireless coverage via AT&T’s 3G high-speed data network in the U.S. and partner networks outside of the U.S.|
|Wi-Fi Connectivity||Supports public and private Wi-Fi networks or hotspots that use the 802.11b, 802.11g, or 802.11n (in b or g compatibility mode) standard with support for WEP, WPA and WPA2 security using password authentication; does not connect to WPA and WPA2 secured networks using 802.1X authentication methods; does not support connecting to ad-hoc (or peer-to-peer) Wi-Fi networks.|
|USB Port||USB 2.0 (micro-B connector) for connection to the Kindle U.S. power adapter or optionally to connect to a PC or Macintosh computer.|
|Audio||3.5 mm stereo audio jack, rear-mounted stereo speakers.|
|Content Formats Supported||Kindle (AZW), TXT, PDF, Audible (Audible Enhanced (AA, AAX)), MP3, unprotected MOBI, PRC natively; HTML, DOC, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP through conversion.|
|Included Accessories||U.S. power adapter (supports 100V-240V), USB 2.0 cable, rechargeable battery.|
|Documentation||Quick Start Guide (included in box) [PDF]; Kindle User’s Guide (pre-installed on device) [PDF]. Additional information in multiple languages available online.|
|Warranty and Service||1-year limited warranty and service included. Optional 2-year Extended Warranty available for U.S. customers sold separately.|