I bumped into a gadget loving friend on the weekend and he produced a Kindle from his bag. Lovingly encased in a small padder bag he was really happy with it declaring it had fired him to read much more than he had previously.
I was glad to have a chance to have a play without needing to buy one.
It was pleasant enough to hold feeling solid enough but light. The screen worked well with good contrast despite being in the park. I didn’t like the way the pages transitioned but I can see why you would need a clear indication of transition. Access to his collection of books was straightforward. I had a bit of a play with the Internet access (he had the 3G version). The picture for this was pretty good (all be it Black and White) and I expect that the navigation would get easier with practice. It displayed my library catalogue fine and the small cover images were clear enough.
Generally I found the physical arrangement / labelling of buttons and options for moving around the device to be rather confusing. I managed to end up in the wrong screen several times and almost succeeded in deleting a book!
So – am I more tempted to buy one? Not really.
And the big reason would have to be the pricing for the ebooks themselves. I have taken to looking on Amazon for the Kindle price. For anything fairly current this seems to be no more than a pound less than for the physical object. Generally it is about 40p cheaper. I have found a few where the Kindle prices is higher. OK – so there is VAT to pay but…
Maybe I am the wrong person for this product – I buy very few books at present – most of my reading is borrowed or the odd charity shop purchase here and there. You also cannot lend a Kindle eBook (apart from if you hand over the physical device!) which is pretty limiting. Amazon seem to take a dim view of lending Kindles.
I can see how it will work for people though and I will be looking for how my service might support people using the Kindle through our collections.