Kindle 3 Arrives August 27th in 3G & WiFi-Only Flavors

Right on schedule, according to months of rumor and speculation, Amazon will begin shipping a new 6″ Kindle e-reader in August. While Amazon isn’t referring to the new model as the Kindle 3, it is indeed a third generation product. Unlike prior editions, the new Kindle will be offered in a graphite color, as seen on the recently refreshed 9.7″ Kindle DX, and the original white. Additionally, a WiFi-only model ($139) will accompany the dual 3G+WiFi capable model ($189). Speaking of that new DX, these updated 6″ Kindles seem to feature a similar e-Ink screen upgrade with faster page refreshes and increased contrast.

Possibly related to the enhanced display, battery life of the Kindle 3 has been improved. And it was done without compromising size – the new units are 21% smaller and 15% lighter. Which is what tempts me most. There also appears to be some software refinements, including an updated Webkit browser as reported by Engadget. (Will us K2 owners see some of this?) However, according to the WSJ, it appears periodicals will retain their basic text-centric presentation.

Last, but not least, the nav rocker sees a much-needed redesign — as I can’t say I’ve enjoyed flipping through the Kindle UI via thumbnail. Instead of a single nub handling 4 directional inputs and serving double duty as the selection button, there is now a more expansive pad to handle these tasks.

Amazon is accepting pre-orders now and units are set to arrive August 27th.

4 thoughts on “Kindle 3 Arrives August 27th in 3G & WiFi-Only Flavors”

  1. I also won my bet with Mark. He predicted a $99 basic Kindle and $149 color Kindle by Labor Day. I disagreed Amazon would be that agressive. Even though a $99 Kindle would move like hotcakes.

    Not sure I’ll be upgrading. I like a smaller and lighter device, but I’m not sure I can justify it. Unless I gift my current K2 to Mom as I’ve considered on a few occasions. Then again… if I get a 4″ or larger phone to replace my 3GS, that could sufficiently handle much of my ebook needs. One less device to charge and tote.

    Wait… just saw the press release and there’s another feature/accessory which could very well tempt me to upgrade:

    The all-new Kindle cover features an integrated, retractable reading light that lets you read comfortably anytime, anywhere. The light is a permanent part of the cover, so it’s always with you, and hides away into the cover when not in use. The high-quality LED light illuminates Kindle’s entire paper-like display, adding brightness without adding glare. Amazon’s patent-pending hinge system secures Kindle in place and conducts electricity from Kindle’s battery to the reading light, eliminating the need for batteries.

    Dwight Silverman has a pic of the new cover, although it’s a bit dark, and says his test device was running software version 3.0. The Amazon rep wouldn’t confirm or deny that it could be pushed to the Kindle 2.

  2. I’d like to see a comparison of the new E-Ink screen’s performance vs. the old screen.

    Its nice to see as a consumer that the eReader war is coming along nicely. In the last 3 months all of the nicer devices have gained more features and become more affordable. I can’t wait to see what will happen between Black Friday and Christmas…

  3. In real world usage, I’m not yet sure how the screens compare. But they’re boasting 20% faster page turns and 50% better contrast out of the new one. $139 seems like a reasonable deal for the WiFi unit, which includes free access at AT&T hotspots… such as Barnes & Noble. ;)

  4. As of right now, yes Dave your ahead. But I still expect new iPods by labor day. I’m wondering when the iPad will get the camera function. We’ve got a month and change before Labor Day. When the first batch of new Kindle refurbs hit the market, I expect them to come with syrup….

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