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Looks like I picked the wrong time to truly test the battery of my Amazon Kindle 2. I wanted to see if I could get through the entire Lord of the Rings trilogy on a single charge, and now I’m wondering if I should restart my […]

Kindle 2

Looks like I picked the wrong time to truly test the battery of my Amazon Kindle 2. I wanted to see if I could get through the entire Lord of the Rings trilogy on a single charge, and now I’m wondering if I should restart my test. I’m about 40% through the books and the battery looks to have at least two-thirds of a charge remaining as of yesterday. But Technologizer says that Amazon today announced that the Kindle’s battery life is boosted by a whopping 85%!

Actually, my test really won’t be affected because the increased power management benefits only applies when the Kindle’s wireless radio is active. I don’t ever leave my radio on — I simply turn it on as needed and then immediately turn it off. See mobile mantra number four to understand why. For those that don’t want to be bothered with my approach, you’ll see battery life extended to seven days from four with your wireless radio powered on – provided you have the Global Wireless Kindle, another reason I won’t benefit. The specifics of firmware v2.3 mention that only Kindles with the HSPA radio will see the power boost. No such luck for the early EVDO models.

Regardless of the 3G radio inside your Kindle, the devices do gain native PDF support:

“[t]he 6-inch Kindle now has a built-in native PDF reader that enables Kindle customers to read professional and personal documents in their original PDF format without conversion. To read their personal or professional documents, Kindle customers simply email PDFs to their Kindle email address or move them over using a USB connection. Customers that prefer to have their PDF documents converted to the Kindle format simply type “Convert” in the subject of the e-mail when sending documents to their “@kindle.com” address.”

While these features now come standard on new Kindle devices going forward, Amazon will be making them available through a firmware upgrade over Whispersync. Also included in the firmware is a method to manually rotate the display when viewing web pages or PDF files. Maybe I’d better leave that wireless radio for the next few days, after all.

  1. You can get the update from Amazon via download instead of waiting for the push – Go to your account page, select the Kindle support link at top and you’ll see the option to download the new update. That link will provide directions on how to install it as well.

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  2. It’s about time they added PDF support. Glad to see better battery life too. Another price drop and I’m buying a Kindle.

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