Kindle Fire HDX in Canada – first impressions
e-Reader Reviews / November 26, 2013

Today was release day in Canada for Amazon’s latest tablet, the Kindle HDX and mine was delivered as anticipated.  As always with Amazon, the setup was very easy.  Find and enter my WiFi details and the device recognised me. It is a lovely device to look at – it is a little more compact than the original Kindle Fire HD which I have. The HD screen is gorgeous.  It has a warmer tone than my the original and text is very crisp and clear.  One thing I noticed which really made me happy is that the earphone jack now is fully compatible with my Apple EarPods so that I can start and stop my audiobooks/immersion reading with those.  The placement of the volume and on/off buttons are different and that did take a bit of finding.  I’m sure I’ll adjust quickly though. I added the origami cover (in purple for those who are interested.)  While it’s cool looking, I discovered that unless you fold it up even when you’re holding it in your hand, the buttons are all but inaccessible. I will say that the Fire 3.1 OS did take a little getting used to coming from the original Fire….

GoodReads update on Kindle Paperwhite with Screenshots
e-Reader Reviews / November 19, 2013

Following on from yesterday’s announcement of the latest update to the Kindle Fire HD operating system, Amazon and GoodReads announced an update today to the Kindle Paperwhite second generation software which brings Cloud Collections and GoodReads integration as well as Kindle Freetime.  Both Amazon and GoodReads have posted press releases on the update.  Note that this is only available at this point for the second generation of Kindle Paperwhite released earlier this year. As with the Kindle Fire update, you can choose to wait until the update is sent to your device automatically, sometime over the next few weeks, or you can go to the update page, download the software and install it manually.  I chose to install manually, and the instructions are very clear and very easy.  It took me all of about 10 minutes to update my device. GoodReads Integration This was announced along with the Fires and Paperwhites and was something I was particularly looking forward to.  I’m very active on GoodReads (check out my profile) and was excited about a tighter integration with Amazon. When you update the software you see the new G GoodReads logo on the top menu and when you click are prompted…

GoodReads update on Kindle Paperwhite with Screenshots
e-Reader Reviews / November 19, 2013

Following on from yesterday’s announcement of the latest update to the Kindle Fire HD operating system, Amazon and GoodReads announced an update today to the Kindle Paperwhite second generation software which brings Cloud Collections and GoodReads integration as well as Kindle Freetime.  Both Amazon and GoodReads have posted press releases on the update.  Note that this is only available at this point for the second generation of Kindle Paperwhite released earlier this year. As with the Kindle Fire update, you can choose to wait until the update is sent to your device automatically, sometime over the next few weeks, or you can go to the update page, download the software and install it manually.  I chose to install manually, and the instructions are very clear and very easy.  It took me all of about 10 minutes to update my device. GoodReads Integration This was announced along with the Fires and Paperwhites and was something I was particularly looking forward to.  I’m very active on GoodReads (check out my profile) and was excited about a tighter integration with Amazon. When you update the software you see the new G GoodReads logo on the top menu and when you click are prompted…

Kindle Fire HDX now available in Canada
e-Reader Reviews / October 17, 2013

So Amazon has finally released the new Kindle Fire HDXs internationally, including Canada.  It will ship in late November.  While it’s great that we only had to wait a month after our US cousins, I did notice however that one of the major new innovations for the HDX is not available in Canada – there is no mention of the MayDay button…  MayDay is available in the UK.  Presumably the French language requirement is preventing its being available in Canada. There are still no movies available to Canadians, no Kindle Owners’ Lending Library and no Kindle Freetime, which is now being offered to other international purchasers.  Still at least we Canadians now have the opportunity to check out the device.  I will, of course, report back on it once I receive it.

Kindle Fire HDX now available in Canada
e-Reader Reviews / October 17, 2013

So Amazon has finally released the new Kindle Fire HDXs internationally, including Canada.  It will ship in late November.  While it’s great that we only had to wait a month after our US cousins, I did notice however that one of the major new innovations for the HDX is not available in Canada – there is no mention of the MayDay button…  MayDay is available in the UK.  Presumably the French language requirement is preventing its being available in Canada. There are still no movies available to Canadians, no Kindle Owners’ Lending Library and no Kindle Freetime, which is now being offered to other international purchasers.  Still at least we Canadians now have the opportunity to check out the device.  I will, of course, report back on it once I receive it.

Kindle Paperwhite Second Generation – First Thoughts
e-Reader Reviews / October 10, 2013

My Kindle Paperwhite second generation arrived today so I decided to take a moment to share my thoughts.  My initial reaction is that this second generation of Amazon’s popular eInk eReader is more evolutionary than revolutionary.  The improvements to the screen and processor, while noticeable, are not overwhelmingly so.  I, personally, was not particularly bothered by some light shading at the bottom of the screen, but I know that many people are sensitive to this.  That is improved considerably on the second generation of Paperwhite. Here are some screenshots: The new Kindle is on the right.  The new version does seem to have a warmer sense about it. and with the new Kobo Aura The new combined Dictionary/X-Ray/Wikipedia screen seems really useful: (Note – the shading at the top of that screenshot is not a faulty screen – it’s decorative shading on the book itself) Probably the most useful is the new page scrolling function – you can now move about easily within a book with a new navigation tool.   The feature that I am most excited about, GoodReads integration, isn’t yet here – it is “coming soon” via software update.  This takes me back a few years when…

Kindle Paperwhite Second Generation – First Thoughts
e-Reader Reviews / October 10, 2013

My Kindle Paperwhite second generation arrived today so I decided to take a moment to share my thoughts.  My initial reaction is that this second generation of Amazon’s popular eInk eReader is more evolutionary than revolutionary.  The improvements to the screen and processor, while noticeable, are not overwhelmingly so.  I, personally, was not particularly bothered by some light shading at the bottom of the screen, but I know that many people are sensitive to this.  That is improved considerably on the second generation of Paperwhite. Here are some screenshots: The new Kindle is on the right.  The new version does seem to have a warmer sense about it. and with the new Kobo Aura The new combined Dictionary/X-Ray/Wikipedia screen seems really useful: (Note – the shading at the top of that screenshot is not a faulty screen – it’s decorative shading on the book itself) Probably the most useful is the new page scrolling function – you can now move about easily within a book with a new navigation tool.   The feature that I am most excited about, GoodReads integration, isn’t yet here – it is “coming soon” via software update.  This takes me back a few years when…

Update on my Kobo Aura 2013 Six inch edition
e-Reader Reviews / September 29, 2013

I’ve had my Kobo Aura for about a week and a half now, and while there has been a lot I have loved about it, it hasn’t been a 100% positive experience. The industrial design is great – I love the bezel flush with the screen and the device is very light and thin.  The new UI looks good and the Pocket integration is fantastic.  Tor.com often has great snippets of upcoming books on its website and I find it awesome to be able to click a button and have those on my Kobo. Kobo often touts its handling of PDFs, and in all fairness it’s probably better than that on the Kindle.  However, I tried to read a PDF book I have and gave up after a few pages.  I found manoeuvring around the document very cumbersome even with Kobo’s navigation tool.  For PDFs, tablets rather than eReaders are definitely the way to go. Searching on the Kobo reader – or the website for that matter – is completely hit or miss.  For more common books or authors there is no problem.  However trying to search for Anne Robillard for example brought up every Anne under the sun except Robillard….

Update on my Kobo Aura 2013 Six inch edition
e-Reader Reviews / September 29, 2013

I’ve had my Kobo Aura for about a week and a half now, and while there has been a lot I have loved about it, it hasn’t been a 100% positive experience. The industrial design is great – I love the bezel flush with the screen and the device is very light and thin.  The new UI looks good and the Pocket integration is fantastic.  Tor.com often has great snippets of upcoming books on its website and I find it awesome to be able to click a button and have those on my Kobo. Kobo often touts its handling of PDFs, and in all fairness it’s probably better than that on the Kindle.  However, I tried to read a PDF book I have and gave up after a few pages.  I found manoeuvring around the document very cumbersome even with Kobo’s navigation tool.  For PDFs, tablets rather than eReaders are definitely the way to go. Searching on the Kobo reader – or the website for that matter – is completely hit or miss.  For more common books or authors there is no problem.  However trying to search for Anne Robillard for example brought up every Anne under the sun except Robillard….

Amazon announces new Kindle Fire HDX
e-Reader Reviews / September 28, 2013

A few days ago, Amazon announced the updates to its Kindle Fire line of tablets.  Here is the page with the details. Naturally, it has an improved screen, and processor.  No surprises there.  What’s more interesting is that they announced a major update to the Kindle Fire OS, to called Mojito.   Some of the new features in Mojito include: Mayday button.  This is the most innovative of the inventions and allows you to be connected to a video chat with an Amazon tech support person.  Your tech will have the ability to view and control your screen to assist you.  This could be a godsend for the novice user.  Amazon is at pains to stress that the agent can only see your screen, not you to alleviate privacy concerns.  This is a very interesting feature and one I think could really differentiate Amazon tablets from the others in a saturated marketplace. On the other end of the scale, Amazon is touting better enterprise support.  This includes support for data encryption, Kerberos integration so that users can browse corporate intranets and VPN clients.  This is interesting. So far, Amazon has placed itself securely in the consumer market – I’m really…