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Which #AmazonKindle To Get?: Kindle Touch or Kindle Keyboard?

The much-anticipated new Kindles have finally been revealed, several months after buzz spread about the Kindle tablets. However, the new Kindles are only up for pre-order, and not going to be sent out for shipping until November 21st.

Way to build hype and anticipation, Amazon! *clap clap*

So since the Amazon Press Conference 13 hours ago, the blogging, tweeting, facebook-updating world has been abuzz with this hot news. And any attempt of mine to talk about the new tablet will probably be stale by now.

Instead, I’ll write as a consumer, torn. The Amazon Kindle (with 3G) is undoubtedly the only e-book reader I am considering now, but the dilemma I am working through right now is this: Kindle Touch 3G or Kindle Keyboard 3G?

For those not yet versed in the different Kindles, check out the Amazon comparison at the bottom of this page. For those who do know their Kindles, watch as I figure out what to get for myself as I write this blog entry. 😛

As a Blackberry user, and not so much an iPhone or iPad user, I’m really not all too savvy with the whole touch screen technology. Though I enjoy tinkering around with games on the iPhones and iPads of friends and family, I don’t borrow them so much for typing, text messaging or browsing/e-mail. And when I do, I usually wind up asking them to type the message for me because touch screen-typing can be quite frustrating (Yes, I am a grandma like that). So the thought of a touch screen e-book reader that I plan to use heavily for e-mails as well left me undecided.

But after consultation with friends, and lots of poring over Kindle demo videos and other reviews online (the one from Mashable was particularly useful), I have accumulated the following data for the Kindle Touch 3G vs. Kindle Keyboard 3G debate with myself:

Key differences between the Kindle Touch 3G and the Kindle Keyboard 3G (Touch characteristics stated first):

  • Weight: 7.8 ounces vs. 8.7 ounces
  • Dimensions: 6.8″ x 4.7″ x 0.40″ vs. 7.5″ x 4.8″ x 0.34″
  • Navigation with Kindle Touch: Touch screen, of course, including the new feature EasyReach — narrow tap zones, about the width of a thumb, that allow users to quickly flip forward or backward through a book with one hand (a feature many existing users love about the Kindle 3).
  • Navigation with Kindle Keyboard: Arrow cursors on the keyboard are used to navigate through menus and browser. One page flipping was one of the perks when this was introduced, with buttons placed at the sides of the device so you can read and flip with one hand.
  • Speed: I have no precise measure, but according to the article above, the Kindle Touch has remarkably quicker response time and faster page loading speed compared to older Kindles.
  • Other features: The new Kindle (Touch) now includes X-Ray — a new feature that, with a single tap, allows readers to see all the passages across a book that mention ideas, characters, historical figures, places or topics that interest them, as well as more detailed descriptions from Wikipedia and Shelfari, Amazon’s community-powered encyclopedia for book lovers. 
  • Price: $149 vs. $139 (both 3G models with Special Offers)

Of course, both models still boast of 6″ E-ink Pearl display that reads like paper and remains unaffected by the sun’s glare (especially when reading at the beach), 2-month battery life, storage for up to 3,000 e-books, Whispersync (which allows you to access your e-books from any device, and pick up where you left off) and remote internet access in 100 countries all over the world (perfect for travelers).

Those are more than enough reasons to be sold on the device, I feel. But read up on other features here, if you still need more convincing (Yes, I intend on making Kindle enthusiasts out of everyone, and I don’t even have my Kindle yet).

So anyway, with the added features and seemingly more user-friendliness of the new Kindle Touch, and the small $10 price difference, I am sold on it now, and I think it will only be a matter of time before I get used to a touch screen interface / navigation system, then eventually, I probably wouldn’t be able to imagine it otherwise. 🙂

Will see how I can get my hands on it ASAP! 😀

UPDATE (10/5/11): I’ve confirmed that the Kindle Touch 3G only supports 3G for buying Amazon books. So no thanks, because this defeats the added purpose of me getting a Kindle for emergency 3G utility, locally and internationally. 😀 Kindle Keyboard 3G it is!