Amazon Kindle vs. Kindle Paperwhite: don’t buy the wrong e-reader

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Renders of nan Amazon Kindle (2022) and Kindle Paperwhite (2021).Joe Maring / Digital Trends

The Amazon Kindle is astir apt nan first sanction that comes to mind erstwhile you deliberation of nan best e-readers, but what you whitethorn not recognize is that nan Kindle sanction represents an full lineup of devices, from nan humble Kindle (2022) that defines nan marque to nan all-new Kindle Scribe released past fall.

While nan Scribe and Kindle Oasis are a duo of pricey flagship e-book readers that are each very unique successful their ain way, there’s besides nan Kindle Paperwhite that’s overmuch much visually comparable to nan entry-level Kindle. It’s truthful similar, successful fact, that you whitethorn person a difficult clip deciding which 1 to spell with. Certainly, nan basal Kindle will connection a coagulated e-book scholar for anyone connected a budget, but much superior bookworms whitethorn want to return a person look astatine nan differences to determine if it’s worthy spending a spot much connected nan Paperwhite — and if that other money translates into a amended reference experience.

Amazon Kindle vs. Kindle Paperwhite: specs

Kindle (2022) Kindle Paperwhite (2021)
Size 157.8 x 108.6 x 8.0mm (6.2 x 4.3 x 0.32 inches) 174.2 x 124.6 x 8.1mm (6.9 x 4.9 x 0.32 inches)
Weight 158 grams (5.56 ounces) 182 grams (6.41 ounces)
Screen 6-inch glare-free pinch four-LED beforehand light 6.8-inch glare-free pinch 17-LED beforehand light
Screen resolution 300 pixels per inch 300 pixels per inch
Storage space 8GB, 16GB
MicroSD paper slot No No
Bluetooth Yes Yes
Water resistance No IPX8
Connectivity Dual-Band Wi-Fi Dual-Band Wi-Fi
Battery 6 weeks, based connected 30 minutes of reference a time pinch Wi-Fi off 10 weeks, based connected 30 minutes of reference a time pinch Wi-Fi off
Colors Black, Denim Black
Price $100 $140
Buy from Amazon Amazon
Review score 4 retired of 5 stars 4 retired of 5 stars

Amazon Kindle vs. Kindle Paperwhite: creation and durability

Amazon Kindle (2022) successful beforehand of book stackChristine Romero-Chan/Digital Trends / Digital Trends

At first glance, nan 2022 Kindle and 2021 Kindle Paperwhite don’t look each that different. They some characteristic a integrative building pinch an e-ink screen, positive nan Kindle logo emblazoned connected nan front. You’ll besides get USB-C charging connected some — a invited upgrade complete nan Micro-USB of nan anterior models.

Once you return that 2nd glance, though, you’ll quickly announcement immoderate subtle but important creation differences that group nan premium Paperwhite apart. It’s somewhat larger — a small complete half an inch successful some directions — but not truthful overmuch that you really announcement it. However, it besides manages to athletics a distinctively larger surface astatine 6.8 inches acknowledgment to nan smaller bezels. While opinions are mixed connected whether that’s a bully thing, since it provides little abstraction for your thumb erstwhile reading, it’s difficult to reason against a larger display.

The Kindle Paperwhite sat connected a table.Digital Trends

The Kindle Paperwhite besides features IPX8 h2o resistance, which nan modular Kindle lacks entirely. This intends you tin consciousness much assured taking it to nan beach, utilizing it by nan pool, aliases moreover sitting successful your basking tub — each of which are awesome places to usage a standalone e-book scholar alternatively of a much costly and vulnerable tablet.

In fact, nan Paperwhite goes beyond nan h2o guidance ratings of astir different electronics, pinch nan expertise to withstand immersion successful up to 2 meters of caller h2o for up to 60 minutes and up to 0.25 meters (about 10 inches) of seawater for up to 3 minutes. Most smartphones can’t grip saltwater astatine each — astatine slightest not officially.

Kindle Paperwhite successful Agave Green color.Amazon

Both nan Kindle and Kindle Paperwhite are disposable successful Black and Denim, but nan Paperwhite also adds an Agave Green to nan mix for those who want thing a spot different. However, while nan modular Kindle’s Denim applies to some nan backmost and nan beforehand frame, nan Kindle Paperwhite features achromatic bezels connected nan beforehand for each colorways.

Nevertheless, a larger screen, IPX8 h2o guidance that includes saltwater, and a wider prime of colors springiness nan Kindle Paperwhite an easy triumph for this round.

Winner: Kindle Paperwhite

Amazon Kindle vs. Kindle Paperwhite: performance, artillery life, and charging

The Amazon Kindle Paperwhite successful usage pinch nan bluish ray select on.Digital Trends

Amazon doesn’t spell into a batch of item erstwhile it comes to specs for its e-readers, but that’s not astonishing arsenic location wouldn’t beryllium overmuch to comparison a Kindle to extracurricular of different Kindle. After all, these aren’t tablets that tally accepted apps and games, truthful each you request to cognize is really agelong it takes to load up a book and flip betwixt nan pages.

In that regard, you’ll find that some nan Kindle and nan Kindle Paperwhite execute arsenic well, which makes consciousness since they some battalion successful nan aforesaid MediaTek MT8113 chip. Downloading books is done complete Wi-Fi — gone are nan days erstwhile entry-level Kindles offered free cellular connectivity — but pinch dual-band Wi-Fi operating connected some 2.4GHz and 5GHz, it’s much than speedy capable that you shouldn’t beryllium waiting excessively agelong to commencement reading. Page-flipping is soft and effortless to nan constituent wherever you won’t consciousness for illustration you’re lagging betwixt pages, though nan e-ink show won’t springiness you nan fancy animated transitions of an LCD aliases OLED screen.

Amazon Kindle (2022) USB-C larboard and powerfulness buttonChristine Romero-Chan / Digital Trends

However, while nan Kindle and Kindle Paperwhite whitethorn beryllium connected par for performance, nan much costly exemplary edges it retired erstwhile it comes to artillery life, delivering up to 10 weeks connected a azygous complaint nether nan aforesaid conditions wherever nan Kindle only lasts for six; those being 30 minutes of reference a time pinch Wi-Fi disconnected and nan beforehand ray group to 13. As for charging, some models only support wired charging complete USB-C; you’ll request to outpouring for nan Paperwhite Signature Edition if you want wireless charging, but wired charging shouldn’t beryllium excessively overmuch of a hassle for a instrumentality that you’ll astir apt only request to plug successful erstwhile a month.

Although your existent mileage will alteration depending connected really overmuch you read, it’s safe to opportunity that, connected average, nan Paperwhite will past you astir 60% longer betwixt charges, which makes it an easy victor for this round.

Winner: Kindle Paperwhite

Amazon Kindle vs. Kindle Paperwhite: display

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite - All-new TabletAmazon

The Kindle offers a 6.0-inch show pinch a solution of 300 pixels per inch (ppi) — again, Amazon doesn’t get into nan precise number of pixels connected nan surface because it doesn’t really matter for a instrumentality for illustration this. That’s a bully betterment complete nan anterior generation’s 167 ppi show that puts it much connected par pinch nan Kindle Paperwhite, though nan second still has it hit pinch a 6.8-inch surface successful nan aforesaid 300 ppi resolution. This gives you a much expansive reference canvas pinch room for much matter and, therefore, little page flipping.

The Kindle Paperwhite show besides wins successful much areas than specified size. The flush-front creation looks and feels much elegant, positive it sports 17 LEDs (versus 4 connected nan Kindle) for much azygous beforehand lighting. Contrary to nan “paperwhite” name, you tin besides set nan show for a warmer amber look that’s easier connected nan eyes and feels much for illustration reference a accepted paperback novel. You tin besides group up a schedule truthful that your Kindle Paperwhite shifts to warmer lighting astatine bedtime, though auto-adjustment is constricted to nan pricier Signature edition.

Amazon Kindle (2022) Dark ModeChristine Romero-Chan / Digital Trends

Both nan Kindle and Kindle Paperwhite now characteristic a acheronian mode for those who find that to beryllium a much comfortable reference experience, and nan front-lit e-ink surface connected either will beryllium a joyousness to publication connected for folks who look astatine backlit computers, phones, and tablets each time long. However, while nan Kindle gets nan occupation done for elemental reading, nan adjustable colour somesthesia and amended beforehand lighting make nan Paperwhite nan overmuch amended prime for avid bookworms.

Winner: Kindle Paperwhite

Amazon Kindle vs. Kindle Paperwhite: package and typical features

Amazon Kindle (2022) StoreChristine Romero-Chan / Digital Trends

The Kindle and Kindle Paperwhite tally Amazon’s proprietary operating strategy that’s dedicated to reference e-books, though they do person a fewer different tricks up their sleeves.

The reference broadside includes everything you’d expect, including nan expertise to propulsion up a array of contents, item passages, adhd notes, and moreover usage Smart Lookup to find definitions for words, related Wikipedia entries, and translations for immoderate selected text. There’s besides Amazon’s X-Ray characteristic that helps to summarize nan astir important accusation from a book, including notable clips, nan names of people, places, terms, and images, and a Vocabulary Builder that will thief you study caller words by keeping way of thing you look up. Highlights and reference positions for a book will sync utilizing Amazon’s WhisperSync technology, which is peculiarly useful if you want to prime up wherever you near disconnected utilizing nan Kindle app for a smartphone aliases tablet.

You tin besides spot celebrated highlighted passages from others who person publication nan aforesaid book earlier you and stock your ain highlights via email aliases station them to your Goodreads profile, wherever you tin besides automatically stock nan books you’re reference pinch others online.

Kindle Paperwhite pinch camping gear.Amazon

However, there’s much to nan Kindles than conscionable reading. You tin besides download audiobooks from Amazon’s audiobook service, Audible, and perceive to them utilizing a Bluetooth headset aliases speaker. Just beryllium alert that while nan retention disposable connected some models is much than capable for thousands of books, audiobooks will eat that up overmuch much quickly. The Kindle Paperwhite is disposable successful an 8GB version, but you’ll want to opt for nan 16GB if you’re looking to transportation astir much than a mates twelve audiobooks.

Both Kindle models besides support magnetic covers that tin automatically slumber nan instrumentality erstwhile closed and aftermath it up again arsenic soon arsenic you flip it unfastened to commencement reading. Amazon people sells its ain versions of these, but location are besides galore stylish third-party options available.

While nan Kindle Paperwhite offers amended hardware, it’s arsenic matched pinch its smaller and much affordable related erstwhile it comes to nan package experience.

Winner: Tie

Amazon Kindle vs. Kindle Paperwhite: price

The Amazon Kindle (2022) starts astatine $100 for nan “Lockscreen Ad-Supported” version, which will show ads related to Amazon products and services connected nan surface erstwhile it’s successful slumber mode. If you for illustration a much relaxing slumber screen, you tin opt for nan ad-free type for $20 more. 

The Kindle Paperwhite (2021) comes successful nan aforesaid ad-supported and ad-free configurations, starting astatine $140 for nan 8GB exemplary aliases $150 for nan 16GB. As pinch nan Kindle, $20 much connected apical of each of those will get you nan ad-free configuration. There’s besides a Signature Edition of nan Kindle Paperwhite that packs successful 32GB of storage, positive wireless charging, an auto-adjusting beforehand light, and nary ads for $190 — only $20 much than nan ad-free 16GB Kindle Paperwhite.

It’s besides worthy adding that Amazon often discounts its full Kindle lineup during typical income events for illustration Prime Day, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday, truthful it’s worthy keeping your eyes peeled for immoderate awesome deals during those seasonal events.

Overall winner: Kindle Paperwhite

A personification sounds connected an Amazon Kindle Paperwhite outdoors.Amazon

The modular Kindle is simply a coagulated and affordable action for casual e-book readers, but if you’re personification who loves consuming books, nan Kindle Paperwhite will beryllium nan amended finance by far.

You get a substantially amended surface that your eyes will convey you for, positive nan benignant of waterproofing that will person you reference comfortably while relaxing successful nan mediate of a lake. This is besides joined by substantially amended artillery life and a much refined creation each around. The regular Kindle is bully for nan money, but if you tin spend it, nan Kindle Paperwhite is really nan measurement to go.

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