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Amazon unveils Kindle Paperwhite, its first lighted-screen e-book reader

Consumer Reports News: September 06, 2012 02:08 PM

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Amazon today announced the Kindle Paperwhite, an e-book reader with an LED-lit touch screen. Aimed to compete directly with the Barnes & Noble Nook Simple Touch with Glowlight, Amazon's new device uses LED lights along the bottom edge of the screen to illuminate it.

Amazon says that despite the lighting, the new model runs for about as long as other e-book readers that use E-ink technology. The company claims the Paperwhite will run for 60 days on a charge, if you read 30 minutes a day with the LED lights on. That's the same claimed life as for the previous (non-lit) Kindle Touch models, which are now discontinued.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos made the announcement. He said the device is "nano-imprinted" so it will release just the right amount of light across the display. The Paperwhite's 212-ppi screen should be just as easy to read in the bedroom as in direct sunlight, claimed Bezos.

The new device also weighs the same 7.5 ounces as the previous Kindle Touches. And amazon says the new model is 10 percent thinner than those models.

A Wi-Fi Paperwhite will cost $119, $20 less than competitor Nook Simple Touch with GlowLight. With free 3G, the Kindle Paperwhite will sell for $179. Both ship October 1. Also announced today is that the $79 Kindle is now $69, and so the cheapest e-book reader on the market.

More later on this new Kindle after we have a chance to see the device up close here at Amazon's news conference in Santa Monica.

Barnes & Noble Nook Simple Touch with Glowlight review and Rating
What Amazon may unveil tomorrow
Amazon poised to introduce a Kindle Fire replacement next week


Paul Reynolds

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