Refined design, water resistance & good screen makes latest e-reader about as good as a single-use device gets

The new Amazon Kindle Paperwhite is thinner, lighter và now water resistant, setting a new standard for what an e-reader should be.

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There’s only so far you can push a single-use device. Technically the Kindle Paperwhite is more than just an e-reader, as it now has công nghệ bluetooth for playing back audiobooks too. But it’s still a book reader, plain và simple.

All that a book reader really needs is a great, clear và easy to read screen. The Paperwhite has that – a 6in 300ppi e-ink screen that’s crisp and easy lớn read in all conditions, complete with a good, even front-light when needed.

Compared with the năm ngoái Paperwhite, the kiến thiết has been simplified further. It’s still a đen rectangle with an e-ink screen in the middle. This time the screen is flush with the body, providing a seamless front a design formerly reserved for the more expensive Voyage and Oasis.


The screen is now flush with the body toàn thân making the fit và finish seamless across the front of the Paperwhite. Photograph: Samuel Gibbs/The GuardianThe body is 0.9mm thinner, 1mm shorter & 2mm narrower than the old Paperwhite, but it’s not really noticeable unless you compare them side by side. The bezels look about the same, the soft-touch plastic toàn thân feels the same, there’s the same button and micro-USB port in the bottom and the same LED that lights up when charging.

What is noticeable is the 23g reduction in weight, which brings the 2018 Paperwhite to lớn just 182g; lighter is better when it comes to lớn reading one-handed. Double the storage at 8GB on the cheapest model is also welcome, particularly if you want khổng lồ load an audiobook.


Screen: 6in e-paper (300ppi)

Dimensions: 167 x 116 x 8.2 mm

Weight: 182g (4G version 191g)

Connectivity: Wi-Fi (3G optional), Bluetooth

Storage: 8 or 32GB

Battery life: rated for approximately 21 hours of reading

Water resistant


The LED in the button lights up when you power nguồn on or off the e-reader và shows charging state when plugged in. Photograph: Samuel Gibbs/The GuardianNew this year is water resistance khổng lồ 2 metres for up to 60 minutes, which means trips lớn the beach or poolside are less fraught with danger. It’s worth noting that the Paperwhite is unlikely khổng lồ float, so perhaps best not khổng lồ take it in the sea, but a quick dip or splash will be fine.

Battery life is the same quoted 21 hours of reading time, or six weeks of 30 minutes a day with wifi off. How far into a book that gets you depends on your reading speed, but I found it could comfortably stretch khổng lồ a 400-page book between charges with the screen at half brightness or more. Switch on wifi and 4G, if you have it, and the battery life will be significantly reduced. It goes into a deep sleep if you don’t use it for an extended period, which helps maintain battery life even with connectivity on.


X-ray continues khổng lồ be great for keeping track of characters and other bits. Photograph: Samuel Gibbs/The GuardianThe reading experience is the same as any recent touch-screen Kindle. Swipe or tap to lớn change pages, tap at the đứng đầu to get lớn the menu, including quick settings such as airplane mode, brightness control và page options.

The swiping gestures are slightly easier now that there’s no lip to the display, but page turn buttons are better for one-handed reading – you’ll need to lớn spend another £110 for the Kindle Oasis for those on an Amazon e-reader.

There are plenty of typefaces, text sizes, spacing & paragraph alignments to choose from, as well as Amazon’s X-ray service that helps you keep track of characters, locations và other bits.

If you have both the audiobook from Audible and the ebook, you can sync between the two, picking up in either format from where you left off, which works amazingly well.



Amazon’s cases are good, but make the Paperwhite quite a lot thicker and more awkward to hold when reading. Photograph: Samuel Gibbs/The Guardian Amazon’s optional cases are excellent, but add bulk & weight and aren’t that easy lớn get on and off

The Paperwhite is the first Kindle with 4G, which I got noticeably better signal with when traveling but given ebooks are tiny in kích thước they tải về in about the same time

There’s no USB-C, so you might need a dedicated micro-USB cable just for the Kindle


The 2018 Amazon Kindle Paperwhite costs £120 with wifi only and 8GB of storage, or £150 for 32GB of storage, both with “special offers” which are adverts on the lockscreen or similar & cost £10 to lớn remove.

The 4G version costs £220 with 32GB of storage và no special offers.

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For comparison, the standard Kindle costs £60 & the Kindle Oasis £230. The Kobo Aura H2O Edition 2 costs £150.


The 2018 Amazon Kindle Paperwhite is about as simple and refined as a standard ebook reader can get. It provides an excellent reading experience, with a great screen, good battery life & ease of use that’s second to lớn none.

The seamless screen looks sleeker than the previous version, but it doesn’t feel lượt thích a luxury thắng lợi in the same way as the Kindle Oasis. At less than half the price of the top-end Kindle that’s just fine. The Paperwhite is therefore the standard paperback to the Oasis’s leather-bound edition.

The addition of water resistance & a reduction in weight are worthwhile, but at this stage the Kindle is less competing against other e-readers than it is against phones and tablets.

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It’s not worth upgrading without reason from the năm ngoái model, but if you want a simple, dedicated e-reader, the 2018 Kindle Paperwhite is about as good as you can get.

Pros: great screen, easy lớn use and buy books, X-ray, audiobooks, even backlight, good battery life, light & easy khổng lồ handle, water resistance

Cons: microUSB, no page turn buttons, no automatic brightness adjustment, more or less locked into Amazon’s ecosystem

The back is soft-touch black plastic, which picks up fingerprints almost immediately. Photograph: Samuel Gibbs/The Guardian

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