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eReaders/eBooks > iPad vs. The Kindle

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message 1: by Tressa (new)

Tressa  (MoanaLisa) | 23376 comments http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/...

I want a Kindle but it looks sort of pathetic next to the iPad, which I don't want to spend the money on.


message 2: by Guido (new)

Guido Henkel (GuidoHenkel) | 258 comments Opening a can of worms, don't you?

My opinion on these things is this.

The Kindle is an eBook reader, the iPad is not. The iPad is a cool gadget, a cool do-it-all little portable computer, whereas the Kindle is a dedicated eBook reader. Nothing more, nothing less.

What makes the iPad unusable as a "serious" eBook reader contender is the short battery life. The Kindle runs for 2 weeks on a single charge. The iPad is listed with 10 hours, which will turn into 7 hours in real life situations. That is not even enough for a transatlantic flight.

In addition, the iPad uses a backlit LCD display which is tiring on the eyes and has a visibly limited resolution. The Kindle's eInk display is not tiring at all and has a much higher resolution, making it look like actual print on paper. Add to it that the iPad will be unviewable in direct sunlight whereas the Kindle has no problems with that, and you clearly see which device is better suited for reading books.

Having said all that, however, there can be no doubt that countless people will use the iPad as an eBook reader nonetheless, mostly because they don't know better, because it is cool or because it is convenient.


message 3: by Tressa (new)

Tressa  (MoanaLisa) | 23376 comments How can I open a can of worms when I don't own either of them? Just an interesting article I read this afternoon. Maybe I'll get a Kindle for my birthday.

Good points, Guido.


message 4: by Guido (last edited Apr 12, 2010 07:22PM) (new)

Guido Henkel (GuidoHenkel) | 258 comments This discussion "Kindle vs. iPad" has been creating a storm of heated discussions across the web for the past months, and I don't expect this one to be much different over time, that's why I said "Can of worms."

Someone posted an image of the glare over on the KindleBoards which I think illustrates the point very well that the iPad is virtually unusable in really bright outdoor environments.



Just for the record, though, I own a Kindle and I love my Kindle. I am a complete Mac-head, too, though and have an iPhone, so I am also a very pro-biased Apple person. Nonetheless, to me the iPad is a wonderful, cool gadget, but really not an eBook reader.


message 5: by Tressa (new)

Tressa  (MoanaLisa) | 23376 comments Hey, I'm in your camp. I want a Kindle!


message 6: by Guido (new)

Guido Henkel (GuidoHenkel) | 258 comments I'm surprised you don't have one already. :)


message 7: by Tressa (new)

Tressa  (MoanaLisa) | 23376 comments I just don't want to plunk down the money for it right now. I'll ignore new technology for a while and then all of a sudden--I've got to have it!


message 8: by Jerrod (new)

Jerrod (LiquidAzrael) | 894 comments Honestly it's pretty silly to compare the two. Your are talking about two devices that have different goals in mind. The Kindle is about a reading experience, the iPad is about a general media device; which is basically a touch screen netbook that costs as much as a full notebook.

As well as the point that Guido pointed out, one thing they don't tell you much of is the proprietary format Apple also uses on it's reader. Much like Amazon, but without the ability to shuttle to other devices...yet.

Overall the article is a cut and paste of every other type of article comparing the iPad to e-readers. I think your minor to run-of-the-mill readers might enjoy the iPad, for those of us that want to read, no doubt an e-ink display reader is the smarter option.

Oh and as for the notes and such, other e-readers have that function, maybe not the Kindle, but Sony and Que among others have the touch screen with hand written notes & highlighting available.


message 9: by Tressa (new)

Tressa  (MoanaLisa) | 23376 comments I'm planning on getting an e-reader soon. Is there one that's better than the others? I'm not really planning on buying the most expensive books to download--I get most of my newest books from the library--but want it to download free or inexpensive books from new authors I want to try out. So if I get a Kindle I need to be able to download non-Amazon e-books.


message 10: by Guido (new)

Guido Henkel (GuidoHenkel) | 258 comments You can easily put non-Amazon books onto the Kindle using a USB cable. You might have to convert them to the Kindle's mobi file format if they're unavailable, but for the most part, every indie author supports the Kindle these days, especially since it is the most important eBook reader.


message 11: by Tressa (last edited Apr 13, 2010 07:00AM) (new)

Tressa  (MoanaLisa) | 23376 comments Thanks, Guido. I'll probably go with the Kindle. If I need help I'll ask Mr. Tressa since my motto is taken from a Talking Heads song: "And you may ask yourself, how do I work this?" This is on my car as a bumper sticker and it suits me to a T.


Bark's Book Nonsense (BarkLessWagMore) | 585 comments I want the IPad but no way am I shelling out that kind of money until they add on some external ports so I can move my information around. I love my apple laptop but it doesn't hold a charge for more than 2 hours and it's bulky.

I'd like a Kindle but honestly I don't sit still long enough to justify buying one (and wouldn't need the 2 week charge) and still much prefer holding a real book. I'd be afraid of damaging or losing it if I carried it around with me. If I lose my book, which I'm prone to do, I'm only out a few bucks. If I lose the Kindle I wouldn't be able to replace it and I'd lose all the books stored on it.

Do any of you have an opinion on "The Nook"? A friend of mine keeps trying to talk me into one because I guess you have the ability to share books but it just seems so expensive to me.


message 13: by Guido (new)

Guido Henkel (GuidoHenkel) | 258 comments I have no experience with a Nook myself but from what I hear it is very sluggish. You press a button and nothing happens for seconds, that kind of thing. Stuff like that would drive me mad, personally.

I'm not entirely sure about the "sharing" feature that the Nook is supposed to have that the Kindle doesn't. The Kindle does have some DRM in place for books purchased through Amazon, but own uploads can be shared easy enough, and you can make your purchased content available to a limited number of other kindle owners also.


Bark's Book Nonsense (BarkLessWagMore) | 585 comments Thanks for that. I'm an impatient person so that would not work for me. I think I'll just hang out and see how these things develop.


message 16: by Dee (new)

Dee | 34 comments I've had 2 Kindles for a couple of years now - a regular Kindle to travel with and a Kindle DX which has a screen size similar to the iPad. I love them and simply wouldn't want to read anything without them. Prior to getting a Kindle, I was an avid reader. Now I'm a voracious reader. The ease of buying books with Amazon's "whispernet" is amazing. You can decide to read a book and have it in your hot little hands in less than a minute.


message 17: by Tressa (new)

Tressa  (MoanaLisa) | 23376 comments Dee, you're making the green-eyed monster in me come out. I want a Kindle and I want one now.


message 18: by Guido (last edited Apr 13, 2010 01:51PM) (new)

Guido Henkel (GuidoHenkel) | 258 comments Well, there you go. Let me help you and make it a little easier for you...

Click here to see Tressa's personal new Kindle that is eagerly awaiting a new home!


message 19: by Dee (new)

Dee | 34 comments I'm sure Amazon would love to accomodate you!


message 20: by Carl (new)

Carl I. | 919 comments I don't think I would ever buy an iPad (too expensive and too limited, I would get a new laptop) and I would lay my life on it I would never buy a Kindle, unless the price dropped to around $50. I see them as two opposite creatures. Kindle is for the book fan, the iPad is for the folks who want a larger iTouch.


message 21: by Tressa (new)

Tressa  (MoanaLisa) | 23376 comments Guido's ordering me a Kindle?! You're too kind.

If only they were $50, Carl. WTH does everything cost so much? Building a deck onto my home is more important right now than a Kindle.


message 22: by Carl (new)

Carl I. | 919 comments Not having a job right now is more important than every other thing I had planned to buy or do in the next few months/years. :)


message 23: by Jerrod (new)

Jerrod (LiquidAzrael) | 894 comments Carl wrote: "unless the price dropped to around $50."

That's the magical price the statisticians are saying will make any e-reader mainstream. 50-100 range anyway. A chip manufacturer recently had a 'breakthrough' that will lower existing costs of making e-readers by up to 150$ per unit, so potentially you could see, at the very least, the 100$ e-readers this year or beginning of next.


message 24: by Tressa (new)

Tressa  (MoanaLisa) | 23376 comments Aw, my birthday is in June.


message 25: by Larry (new)

Larry (Hal9000i) The thing with e-readers is because they want to make it look as natural as possible(and to save battery life) they dont come with backlights-which is a shame because I tend to read at night, with the lights off in bed. The iPad is of course backlit but is a lot more than just a book reader-its more like a mini laptop.

Soon Creative will have an e-reader out that will be full colour and so able to read magazines that you can subscribe to, as well as e-books, and i suppose will be like a bridge between kindle types and the iPad.


message 26: by Jerrod (new)

Jerrod (LiquidAzrael) | 894 comments Keep in mind 8-Bit color e-ink readers are already released in Japan. Very expensive, but the natural progression from 4/8/16 Grey Scale to color is already going full steam. I'm sure we'll see some color e-readers soon state side.


message 27: by Carl (new)

Carl I. | 919 comments Larry wrote: "The thing with e-readers is because they want to make it look as natural as possible(and to save battery life) they dont come with backlights-which is a shame because I tend to read at night, with ..."

Actually, iPads are closer to netbooks, and yet they still don't have the USB ports that more netbooks have, correct? They truly are just a big iTouch.

$100 for a Kindle I would pay, if I had it, which I don't, but I might someday.


message 28: by Guido (last edited Apr 14, 2010 07:14AM) (new)

Guido Henkel (GuidoHenkel) | 258 comments Jerrod, chip prices are not really the determining factor in eBook readers like the Kindle at all from what I understand. The Kindle uses a Qualcomm chip that has been used in gazillion of cell phones across the world and can be had for practically a dime a dozen.

Maybe it's the cost of the display or maybe simply the intention to keep prices high as long as possible to recoup development costs, well knowing that they will have to come down eventually under competitive pressure.


message 29: by Jerrod (new)

Jerrod (LiquidAzrael) | 894 comments All electronic devices use some form of cheap chip that is multipurpose. The chip in question is the system-on-chip. With it consolidating a couple of system chips, making it faster as well as specifically designed for e-readers, which is a first. The Freescale chip (i.MX508) is used in most e-readers from Sony to Kindle. Now the display is probably the most costly portion of an e-reader, but streamlining and consolidating the hardware usually helps lower costs.

from wired...

"Freescale’s chip could reduce the overall cost of materials because the chip itself will cost about $10 when ordered in large volumes (greater than 250,000 units). Overall, this could reduce the price of an e-reader by at least $30-$50. The most expensive component in an e-reader, however, remains the E Ink black-and-white display."


message 30: by Tressa (new)

Tressa  (MoanaLisa) | 23376 comments Guido's making Jerrod do his homework. I don't care. I just want the Eggberts of the world to put their brains together and make it cheaper for me to buy.


message 31: by Larry (new)

Larry (Hal9000i) For now I'll be reading books on my G1 phone, but you can also get a program for the Nintendo DS that turnes it into a book reader-two screens so it looks even more like a book!


message 32: by Jerrod (new)

Jerrod (LiquidAzrael) | 894 comments Tressa wrote: "Guido's making Jerrod do his homework."

Nah, I'm a hardware guy, getting this info is like telling a porn star to get laid; It's easy.

Price will get there Tressa, it'll take some time with the specialty devices like e-readers. Heck Sony can currently make a reader for 199. Round a few edges and all of a sudden, you've got a cheap e-reader.


message 33: by Tressa (new)

Tressa  (MoanaLisa) | 23376 comments I'm remaining positive. I know it will come down, sooner than later.


message 34: by Guido (new)

Guido Henkel (GuidoHenkel) | 258 comments As a matter of fact I've been surprised just how long the prices have held up being so high. In any other industry they would have tumbled a year ago or so.

I think now that Amazon has some more competition to deal with - which they didn't a year ago - we will see some movement sometime this year.


message 35: by Jerrod (last edited Apr 14, 2010 08:27AM) (new)

Jerrod (LiquidAzrael) | 894 comments Guido wrote: "As a matter of fact I've been surprised just how long the prices have held up being so high. In any other industry they would have tumbled a year ago or so."

Part of that is because it's a specialty market, unlike something with more mass appeal like phones, netbooks, notebooks, etc. Also you've got a primary display that is literally used in only one type of device. That will also keep the price up as well.

Now if they'd just all agree on a standard format, I wouldn't need to be a criminal just to read a book across more than one platform.


message 36: by Carl (new)

Carl I. | 919 comments But with the way tech is nowdays, they will just add new bells and whistles to justify the high prices. Case in point are the iPods and DS's. They just keep slightly revamp the DS and jack the prices up. Same with iPods, the Pods have held pretty steady in price. Tech doesn't really drop all that much.


message 37: by Tressa (new)

Tressa  (MoanaLisa) | 23376 comments Good point, Carl. Boooo!


message 38: by Jerrod (last edited Apr 14, 2010 11:58AM) (new)

Jerrod (LiquidAzrael) | 894 comments But you are comparing a over-saturated market to a niche market that has millions of consumers still left untapped because of price. They'll still make premium versions when the prices get to the 'magic' level, but if they want to be other than a niche product, they price will drop.

iPods and other Apple products don't drop in price and are rarely on sale because they know people will pay for pretty, functional can be debated, but other manufactures make MP3 players that are just as good if not better for cheaper than most Apple MP3 players. With a DS (assuming your speaking of the Nintendo DS), it's expected, it's a console, you are buying into a locked product with nothing to drive down the price, all materials associated with the DS must be authorized by Nintendo... sounds familiar doesn't it.


message 39: by Guido (new)

Guido Henkel (GuidoHenkel) | 258 comments Maybe, but Keep in mind these are oddities. The DS is without any competition in it's space and the iPods are, well, iPods. It is possible, though, that the Kine develops that kind of notoriety. Signs of it are certainly evident.


message 40: by Jerrod (new)

Jerrod (LiquidAzrael) | 894 comments They are trying, it's evident with them not licensing out the .amz e-book format. They could easily keep course and lock prices.

But some vendor will make a cheaper e-reader. If it has the features you are looking for is another story.


message 41: by Kathy (new)

Kathy (bookgoddess1969) | 386 comments I love my Kindle. All I wanted was an eReader, nothing else, so this is perfect. I can check my email which is convenient, but it's not necessary!


message 42: by Guido (new)

Guido Henkel (GuidoHenkel) | 258 comments I don't even use that feature in my Kindle. For that I have my computer or my phone. LOL


message 43: by D4ngerousBeans (new)

D4ngerousBeans | 270 comments I`ve been saving up for a bit to buy a Kindle , and i`m nearly there , then I find this thread and theres talk of new and improved colour E-readers over in Japan and I no longer know what to do , that and the fact that the greedy publishers/Amazon want silly prices for Hardback Edition e-books ,I can understand the costs involved in printing a Hardback or Paperback for that matter , but some of the prices for some txt are just silly .


message 44: by Kathy (new)

Kathy (bookgoddess1969) | 386 comments D4ngerousBeans wrote: "I`ve been saving up for a bit to buy a Kindle , and i`m nearly there , then I find this thread and theres talk of new and improved colour E-readers over in Japan and I no longer know what to do , t..."

I know what you're saying, but I think ebooks will go down soon. Now that ebooks are becoming so standard. Plus all the classics on Amazon are free or very cheap, which is a nice bonus. And I'm able to download ebooks from all sorts of websites online and email them or download them to my kindle. So there are ways of saving. I wouldn't trade my Kindle for anything! :)


message 45: by Guido (last edited Apr 23, 2010 11:27AM) (new)

Guido Henkel (GuidoHenkel) | 258 comments Let me just say a few things about that. Feel free to disagree if you wish.

Since novels are typically black print on white paper, why would you want to hold out for a color eBook reader? Unless you are planning to read comic books or lifestyle magazines on your Kindle, I really don't see why color would be an important feature in an eBook reader. The most important features in an eBook reader, in my opinion, should be the quality of the text display, accessibility of content and the battery life. The Kindle offers both better than virtually any other eBook reader platform, including the iPad.

Now, as for pricing of eBooks. I really hate this "greedy publisher," "greedy corporation," "greedy that" attitude people bring forward all the time. First of all, all companies are inherently greedy, that's why they are called "businesses." It comes with the territory. They are in it to make money. Even the company you are working for, most likely, because the money to pay your paycheck and that of your fellow employees has to come from somewhere.

Secondly, I always fail to understand that "ebooks saves money so ebooks should be cheaper" argument. You need to understand that when you buy a book, you are not paying for the physical item but for the entertainment value.
Why are people happy to pay $30 for a DVD when the production cost of the item is 15 cents? Because of the entertainment value. Why do they pay $15 a month to play "Lord of the Rings Online" without any physical goods involved? Because of the entertainment value. Why do they pay $12 for a movie ticket? You got it, I believe, because of the entertainment value.

Considering how much time you will spend reading a book, $10 or even $15 for a book is not a bad trade actually. Compare it to a DVD where you pay $20 or $30 for 2 hours of entertainment by comparison, and the book looks pretty darn good. I am not sure why anyone would want to call it "silly prices," as the entertainment value of the book remains the same whether it is displayed on an eBook reader display or a printed page.

Don't get me wrong. I love to save money too and I love to see eBooks cheaper than print books. But in part that is also because I think the prices for print books have been exploded so brutally that they have become unrealistic. I paid $15 for a paperback the other day, and quite frankly, that is a bit steep, considering that these books were around $3 when I grew up.


message 46: by Jerrod (new)

Jerrod (LiquidAzrael) | 894 comments First off, regarding color e-readers. They'll be part of high-end readers for awhile, no need to save for it, because you won't be able to afford it if your currently saving for a kindle. Current USD prices for color e-readers are in 1000 and up. Second the technology will evolve because of the low power benefit and for those professionals and general consumers that will need color (comics, magazines, presentations etc) for their reading needs.

As for price of e-books. I don't really care as long as they are not more expensive than print books. I know what it's like to loose work because of a nation of cheap asses and I gladly pay the price for books, electronic or in print. One reason why I don't have TV service; cost versus entertainment is horrible, thus saving me money for things that I deem worth the purchase, like books, some movies and other hobby items.


message 47: by Guido (new)

Guido Henkel (GuidoHenkel) | 258 comments "I don't have TV service; cost versus entertainment is horrible"

I never looked at it that way, but you are absolutely right, of course.


message 48: by D4ngerousBeans (new)

D4ngerousBeans | 270 comments I was going to write a long reply , but i`m going to keep it simple by blaming Tressa for" opening a can of worms" as Guido says. :)


message 49: by Tressa (new)

Tressa  (MoanaLisa) | 23376 comments Why are people happy to pay $30 for a DVD when the production cost of the item is 15 cents?

People are happy about $30 DVDs? But I get what you're saying.


message 50: by Scott (new)

Scott I never pay more than $15 for a DVD (well, BluRay now).


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