Amazon kindle paperwhite (2018) review: the best got better

Now that it"s waterproof, the Kindle Paperwhite is the only e-reader you need to know about.

Bạn đang xem: Amazon kindle paperwhite (2018) review: the best got better

ByHenry T. Caseypublished 26 October 21

Comments (6)

*





For a limited time, the Kindle Paperwhite is down to $95 at Amazon ($35 off).Also, the normal Kindle is back on sale, marked down to lớn $65 at Amazon. Other đơn hàng include the Kindle Kids Edition is $79 at Amazon ($30 off).


The day before Amazon announced the new Kindle Paperwhite, I asked a colleague if the e-reader was "done." Not that e-readers are inherently bad, but I wondered if Amazon had already made the best affordable midrange e-reader that it could.


And then Amazon one-upped itself by giving the Paperwhite ($129/£119) some of the best features from its high-end Kindle Oasis: waterproofing, more storage & a display that"s flush to its bezels. While it may not make every Paperwhite user run out to lớn upgrade today, this Kindle Paperwhite nhận xét will show why it sat atop our best Kindle page.

Editor"s note: Amazon has a new version of this model, so kiểm tra out our Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2021) đánh giá to learn more about it.


Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2018) review: Price & configurations

While I"m not happy to lớn see that the Paperwhite costs more than it used lớn — see below for more — right now Amazon"s got a $30 off deal, so the Kindle Paperwhite is now just $99. Take advantage of this deal now, as it might not last long.

The one downside about this year"s Paperwhite is that it costs $10 more than it used to, at $129/£119, although the waterproofing is well worth it. Everything else is business as usual, or improved.


Paperwhite năm ngoái with special offers, Paperwhite 2018 without special offers

The default Paperwhite comes with 8GB of storage: twice as much as the previous Paperwhite packed. Want four times that much, so you never ever have to lớn think twice about downloading all the audiobooks và graphic novels you want? A 32 GB Paperwhite costs $30/£30 extra, at $159/£149. LTE connectivity with không lấy phí cellular connections (for when you want a book, but you"re away from Wi-Fi) costs an extra $70/£70, but that option is available for only the 32GB model, which makes for a $249/£219 Paperwhite.

Of all these upgrades, the only one I"d consider is spending $20/£10 lớn remove the Special Offers(aka ads) from Amazon for other books. Amazon doesn"t take the user"s reading habits into consideration, and just spams you with popular novels.

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2018) review: Design

The new Paperwhite is nearly identical to lớn the previous model. Its soft-touch matte-black case looks and feels just like its predecessor"s, though the Kindle biểu tượng logo is now a light gray that contrasts with the case instead of a matching black.


The new Paperwhite is 0.32 inches thick và weighs 6.4 ounces, making it a slimmer version of the 2015 Paperwhite (0.36 inches, 7.2 ounces). Amazon"s $79 Kindle is thicker & lighter, but it doesn"t pack a backlight, which means it"s a no-no for nighttime.

The new Paperwhite is closer in kích thước to the graphite-aluminum Kindle Oasis (0.33 inches, 6.7 ounces), while the Barnes và Noble Nook GlowLight 3 (0.35 inches, 7.0 ounces) is slightly thicker và heavier. The Nook, however,also offers buttons for turning the page, which the Paperwhite could stand khổng lồ add. Rakuten, a Japanese electronics company that recently partnered with Walmart, just announced the Kobo Clara HD, a similarly priced e-reader that we"re looking to kiểm tra soon.


Paperwhite 2015 (left), Paperwhite 2018 (center), Oasis (right)

The Oasis"s larger kích thước (a 7-inch display vs. The Paperwhite"s 6-inch screen) is still a point in its favor, but the Paperwhite has caught up in one key way. The Paperwhite"s screen is finally flush with the bezel around it. This looks a lot nicer than the previous Paperwhites, which framed the screen with a chunky, shadow box-like bezel that stood out.

Handing the new Paperwhite khổng lồ my mom, who doesn"t spend more than a couple of hours away from her own Paperwhite, I got a surprising reaction. She said she likes the chunky bezel because it"s a good place to rest her fingers, but this new model"s screen puts your fingers too close to the touch screen. Accidental page turns weren"t an issue during my testing, though I do understand the reaction.

Then I remembered why I prefer the Oasis" design over the Paperwhite"s. Unlike the Paperwhite, the Oasis is asymmetrical, with one thin bezel on one side, & clickable buttons & a wider bezel on the other side. This makes it easier to lớn hold. The Paperwhite"s slightly curved backside is also much simpler than the Oasis", which offers a bump meant lớn be cradled with your gripping fingers.


One positive design change is that there"s no hump on the back where the power nguồn button & microUSB port rest. They"re just a part of the bottom edge.

Both Kindles charge over microUSB, don"t offer headphone jacks (Bluetooth is needed for audiobooks) and feature a small nguồn button that you"ll have khổng lồ squint to notice. Annoyingly, Amazon doesn"t include a USB power nguồn adapter. Sure, you"ve probably got one lying around, but for $129, Amazon should have included one.

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2018) review: Durability


The biggest new feature of the 2018 Kindle Paperwhite is its waterproof design, which earned an IPX8 rating. That"s up to 60 minutes of submergence in 2 meters of water. You don"t need to worry about it falling into your bath, the pool or even the ocean at a beach (though that"s riskier, as saltwater is more corrosive).


Not only did I splash water on the Paperwhite during a photoshoot; I dropped the Paperwhite in a foot-tall bucket of tap water, then removed it after trăng tròn minutes. The device continued khổng lồ work & offer responsive page-turning, as if it had been dry the whole time.


Technically speaking, the IPX8 classification means we could have waited another 40 minutes, & dunked it even deeper.

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2018) review: Display

The Paperwhite"s 6-inch, 300 ppi display is just as sharp & easy to lớn read as its predecessor"s: a true example of "If it ain"t broke, don"t fix it." The screen"s anti-glare display is also still great for reading in a variety of lighting situations.

Xem thêm: Cẩm Nang Du Lịch Krabi Là Ở Đâu, Kinh Nghiệm Du Lịch Krabi Tự Túc 2018

Our light gun rated the screen for a maximum of 78 nits, which is slightly lower than the 92-nit 2015 Paperwhite, & well below the 137-nit Oasis. This Kindle packs 5 LED backlights, one more than the năm ngoái Paperwhite (which packed 4), & seven fewer than the Oasis (which packed 12), as well as an adaptive sensor.


The Paperwhite 2015 (left) & Paperwhite 2018 (right) both feature the same great display.

As I devoured a particularly tense section of Stephen King"s The Outsider on the Paperwhite, I noticed a small gap between the screen & the bezel. This gap is also there on the Kindle Oasis, and it"s the kind of thing that many smartphones used lớn have. It"s a small thing, và not that important, but it"s an area in which E-ink displays can still advance.

Reading Andrew Sean Greer"s novel Less in Bryant Park one sunny morning, I noted the Paperwhite"s super-legible display. Even in direct sunlight the page was easy khổng lồ read.

The Paperwhite is even suitable for reading graphic novels, I found as I paged through Kieron Gillen"s The Wicked & The Divine. The e-reader’s grayscale display is a bit unfriendly to màu sắc publications, though.

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2018) review: User experience

Overall, the Paperwhite is still a joy lớn use. Pages refresh và searches load with a prompt tốc độ that"s limited only by the E-ink itself. Contrast that with the slow, sluggish performance of the Nook GlowLight 3, and you"ll understand why the word "Nook" became an afterthought in the e-reader market.


As I turned the lights off in my bedroom, getting ready to read a chapter of Jennifer Egan"s Manhattan Beach before I went khổng lồ sleep, I noticed the Paperwhite"s lack of automatically adjusting backlighting. It"s not the biggest issue — it took two taps to lớn get lớn the brightness menu, và some fiddling lớn get it right — but I missed the Oasis, which knew when I"d entered a dark room và compensated without prompting.

Per a question from Tom"s Guide forums member derek87, I compared the 2018 Paperwhite"s lighting in pitch-dark lighting to that of the 2015 Paperwhite. The newer mã sản phẩm provided a more even, uniform lighting, even at the lower over of the brightness settings (set between 5 & 8). Also, the 2018 model was brighter at 1 notch of brightness than the 2015 model was at 5 notches. Và don"t worry, this 2015 Paperwhite wasn"t burned out, it"s a pretty recent purchase, acquired in July 2018.

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2018) review: Battery Life

Amazon rates the new Kindle Paperwhite as lasting up khổng lồ six weeks on a charge. That"s based on 30 minutes "of reading per day with wireless off & the light setting at 13." The über-retailer says your time may vary, due lớn use of wireless connectivity, Bluetooth & lighting.

Based on my experience, I believe that estimate. After three days of using the Paperwhite rigorously for a few hours every day, including multiple hours at full brightness, as well as using Bluetooth, Wi-Fi và LTE, I knocked the on-screen battery life estimate down to 50 percent.

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2018) review: Content

Judging by raw numbers, you"d have a hard time going wrong with Amazon"s library, which the company claims has "millions" of books (Tom"s Guide editor Marshall Honorof pegs it at "about 4 million"), including "over 1 million Kindle exclusive titles." Barnes & Noble on the other hand, claims its library is around 4.5 million books.


Of course, though, we"re all chất lượng individuals, and we each have tastes that can find the holes in an online library. For example, neither the Kindle store nor the Nook store sells the hardcover book currently on my bedside table, I"m Sorry, I Love You, a recently released history of pro wrestling by Briton Jim Smallman.

Amazon"s also got Kindle Unlimited, a $9.99 Netflix-for-books with "over 1 million titles and thousands of audiobooks." Authors whose work appears in Kindle Unlimited include Michael Crichton, Neil Gaiman và George Orwell. Graphic novels, including Saga và Captain Marvel, also appear. For a limited time, a Paperwhite purchase includes a 6-month free trial.

In case you"re not made of money, the Kindle Paperwhite still supports borrowing books from public libraries for free, using the Overdrive service.

Prime members can take advantage of First Reads (formerly Kindle First), which grants early access to lớn editor"s picks. Members can also get two Kindle books a month for $1.99 each, và get discounts on hardcover books, which knock pricing down khổng lồ $9.99 or less.

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2018) review: Audiobooks

Amazon has also added audiobook support to the Paperwhite. This option comes via công nghệ bluetooth headphone support, and was once restricted to lớn the other Kindles (both the cheaper $80 Kindle and the $250 Oasis), or customers willing to lớn shell out $20 for Amazon"s micro- USB-to-headphone-jack adapter.


As I listened to Emma Galvin read Edan Lepucki"s post-global disaster-relationship novel California over my AirPods, I wandered around my living room with no loss in audio quality. Only when I reached the far kết thúc of my medium-size loft did the audio crackle with disruption.

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2018) review: Verdict

This Kindle Paperwhite review tested the durability of Amazon"s mid-range e-reader & showed why it"s a winner.

With water-resistance & a flush-to-screen display, Amazon"s taken the Paperwhite và made it even more compelling. The only downside is that it costs $10 more now.

The metallic Kindle Oasis offers physical buttons and automatically adjusts lớn your lighting conditions, but its $250 price is mighty high. But we"re betting that at $129, the new Kindle Paperwhite is the best e-reader for most readers. And as to lớn whether or not existing Paperwhite owners need khổng lồ upgrade, that depends on how much time you spend around water.