You hear it all the time. People want to gush about how happy they are — after a good meal, for example — and they’ll say “This is the best sandwich ever.” I always smile, since you can’t actually have surveyed every single sandwich ever created in the history of time. But it is possible to test out every Kindle, every Nook, and every digital reading device ever made. Someone’s finally done a comparison of every single device, and they’ve declared that Amazon’s newest Kindle Paperwhite is, in fact, the best digital reader ever.
It was CNN.
America’s prestigious 24-hour news channel just posted a new review of the next generation of Kindle Paperwhite — and I’ve never seen such a positive review. “Once upon a time, there was an argument to be made for the Barnes & Noble Nook e-reader,” the article begins, “but with the introduction of the Kindle Paperwhite last fall, that battle turned from competitive to no contest.” They applaud the thin, light design of the new devices, saying the Kindle Paperwhite ” finds a perfect sweet spot of size and weight without becoming too difficult to handle or feeling too cheap.” And they also loved the display of the Paperwhite, noting it’s high-contrast and the way it refreshes the words on the screen quickly.
Even while they were complaining that Amazon’s estimate of the battery life might be a little high, they admit that most users will be able to read on the new Paperwhite for several weeks before having to recharge it. And they even praised the touchscreen interface for being quick to respond to the user’s touches. I know people who love their Kindles, but it’s really impressive that one of their new fans is CNNMoney — which is also the online home for two well-respected American finance magazines, Fortune and Money. And according to Wikipedia, more than 10.8 million people visit the CNN Money site each month — so this could become a very influential review.
But there was also a very interesting twist. One of the advantages CNN cited for the Paperwhite was the exclusive-to-Amazon “Kindle Singles” — the short, cheap works written by established authors, which you can’t get on any other device. And they cited something which I agree is one of the most compelling features about Amazon’s ecosystem: the Kindle Lending Library, which lets you borrow one ebook from the library each month without having to pay for it.
Of course, to be fair, the Nook lets you read almost any ebook for free — if you’re willing to actually take your Nook into a Barnes and Noble Store. But CNN’s reviewer wasn’t swayed, and came down unequivocally in favor of the new Kindle Paperwhite. Their conclusion?
“Ultimately there’s no reason not to buy an Amazon e-reader right now. It provides the best hardware and the best ecosystem.”