Kindle’s Second Coming: $359, Reads Aloud, Syncs Content with Devices


It’s no big secret that Amazon (s AMZN) planned to announce a successor to their Kindle device today. We’ve already seen the leaked photos of a far-nicer looking device with rounded corners and re-designed buttons. That should address some of the usability features. I hate accidentally hitting the next page button and feeling like I just skipped half a chapter. But what else is new or improved in the next-generation Kindle platform?

  • 2GB of storage memory.
  • 0.36-inches thin.
  • 20% faster page refreshes.
  • 16 shades of greyscale over the original four.
  • 25% longer battery life.
  • An experimental “read-to-me” feature that uses text-to-speech.
  • Same $359 price; you can pre-order today and shipments start on February 24th.

One thing we alluded to last week was Kindle content on other devices. Sure enough, it’s real and it’s spectacular. At least it sounds that way, even if it only works with Kindle 1 and 2 devices for now. Here’s what Amazon says officially:

Amazon’s new “Whispersync” technology automatically syncs Kindle 2 and the original Kindle, which makes transitioning to the new Kindle 2 or using both devices easy for customers. Kindle 2 will also sync with a range of mobile devices in the future.”

No word on what mobile devices we’ll see Kindle content work with, but my money is still on an updated MobiPocket client for starters.