Amazon Kindle, Latest Generation, WiFi
April, 2011, I decided to spring for the Kindle Wifi. It is nicer than I thought it was going to be, but I have gotten quite used to the backlighting of the Franklin Rocket eBook, so it is like a step backwards, needing to have a reading light to use the Kindle in low-light environments.
Setting up the Amazon Kindle
The Kindle was very easy to setup, so easy in fact, that I set it up in the parking lot at the Mall of New Hampshire. While it did not require much charging, I did plug its USB cable into the iGo 12 volt charging system, with a USB adapter to confirm it would charge through that - not a problem. Next, I transferred some PDF documents from my Dell Mini 10 netbook computer, onto the Kindle. The transfer was nice and fast. When connected by USB to a computer, the Kindle mounts like a USB flash drive. The folder structure is very straight-forward. The registration of the Kindle required an Internet connection, but the Kindle refused to see my Verizon MiFi 2200; I confirmed operation of the MiFi with the Dell Mini, there was a strong connection.
Attempting to establish communications with the MiFi showed me one aspect of the Kindle that I did not like - when entering the passcode for the WPA-enabled security, the Kindle does not echo the characters entered, so you just guess that you entered the correct code. It would have been nice if they even just momentarily echoed the entered characters, or had a radio button to allow the user to toggle the characters entered. Otherwise, I assume that the MiFi is simply not going to communicate with the Kindle, so I will need to continue carrying a laptop with me when traveling.
The Experimental Menu
The menu key brings up a menu in the upper-right corner of the reader's display. The bottom entry, is a menu entitled 'Experimental'. This menu provides some very cool apps, that I assume are Java-based: a Web Browser, Play MP3 and Text-to-Speech.
The web browser and text-to-speech, I have tried. The text-to-speech is fairly nice. I am not sure how much I would use it, but it is nice just the same. The web browser is better than I would have expected. While I only went to Facebook, I was impressed by how much of the webpage is portrayed on the screen. zooming and panning are easily accomplished, but I do wish that would have made a simpler method of 'nudge' panning, such as holding down the shift key while using the 4 direction button to pan slightly in any direction.
Downloading eBooks and other Documents to the Kindle
Downloading eBooks, from the Amazon store, to the Kindle is quite straight-forward. Establish an Internet connection using the WiFi connection, then from the main menu, choose Shop in Kindle Store. In the Kindle Store, you will login using your Amazon account information, I used my Amazon Associates username and password, with no problem. Then, you navigate through a few different menues until you find an electronic book that you want to purchase and download.
Other documents can be downloaded to the Kindle, I have started to writeup the methods that I have used so far on my eBooks webpage.