Gadget Guru: Lower Kindle prices make consumers rethink book reading options


Vincent Mecca, Opinion Co-Editor

This holiday season, put those books away, as three new Amazon Kindles make their way onto your affordable wish list.

The Kindle has been revolutionary in the way we read books, but, due to the prices, many of us have turned up our noses at them. Now, with the Kindle starting at $79, it’s hard to overlook. The three newest Kindles that were released are the Kindle, Kindle Touch, and Kindle Fire, the latter being a reading device and tablet computer.

The new Kindle has a five-way control button, although there is no longer a keyboard which some people might not like. The touch model starts at $99, and features a multi-touch screen. Both the Kindle and Kindle Touch have the E-Ink display. This makes the screen look like real paper, and allows you to read outside in the sunlight more easily.

The Kindle Fire is the most exciting. Although it does lack the E-Ink screen, it replaces it with a colorful touch screen. For $200, this Kindle doubles as a E-Reader and a tablet computer, and allows you to watch movies, play games, and browse the web with the new Amazon Silk browser.

It is important to mention that, although the prices of the Kindle models are lowered, these prices come at a cost. By choosing the $99 model Kindle Touch for instance, you agree to have special offers displayed on your screen while you are not reading. These offer screens are not intrusive on your reading, but if you don’t want them to display at all, then you’ll have to pay about $30 more for the models that do not include the special offers.

The argument has been brought up in the past that buying a Kindle was not worth the price, unless you purchased about ten hard cover books a year. But with the new price drop on the Kindles, and the convenience the lightweight devices offer, it seems as though it might be time to break away from those heavy books we lug around and ask Santa for a Kindle this Christmas.