Kindle Fire HD Review: Choice It If You Want a Good E-Reader Device
Anyone who is looking for an Amazon Kindle, either for themselves or as a gift, is absolutely spoiled for choice these days. In fact, there are so many different models to choose from that you might find yourself somewhat confused.
The Kindle range starts with the entry level Kindle reader - for just $ 69 - and runs up to the top of the range Kindle Fire HD 8.9”, with 4G connectivity and 63 GB memory, for $ 614. That is, roughly speaking, a difference in price of an order of magnitude across the range.
Part of the reason for that is the fact that the Kindle family now includes both e-readers and tablet computers. Whilst these two devices are often compared side by side, they are very different.
E-readers use e-ink technology displays. These are great to read on - after you’ve been using an e-reader for even a short time, you won’t notice that you’re reading on a screen rather than reading text printed on paper. Another good thing about e-ink displays is the fact that they only use power when changing the display. That means that they have a battery life which is measured in weeks rather than hours.
The downside of e-readers, and e-ink displays, is the fact that they can’t handle video and are, for the moment at least, available in monochrome only. Color displays are in development, but these seem to be some way off just at the moment.
That’s where tablet computers come in. These have color, touch screen displays which are ideal for surfing the web and watching video. They can be used to read e-books, but because the display is back-lit, this might give you eye strain if you read for too long. However, if you only want to read for short periods at a time, or if your normal reading material relies on color and is image heavy, a tablet might still be a good choice for you.
The other disadvantage of tablet computers is the fact that the lovely color screen has a high power demand. Battery life is measured in hours rather than weeks.
At the end of the day, both devices serve a purpose - and which one you choose will depend upon your personal circumstances and requirements.
Choose an e-reader (like the Kindle, Paperwhite or Keyboard) if you mainly want to read books. Choose a tablet computer (like the Kindle Fire, Fire HD or Fire HD 8.9”) if you want to surf the web and watch video.