I’ve been a keen Kindle user for nearly 4 years and barely visited a book shop in that time; now I’m wondering if I need to go back.
The reason is book discovery and how terribly awful it is on the e-ink Kindle devices. I’m increasingly finding that it’s far too difficult to find books to read using the Amazon store on my Kindle. The e-ink screen, so fantastic for reading, is next to useless when it comes to browsing the Amazon store for a new book. The very technology that makes reading such a pleasure is the thing that makes finding something to read such a trial.
If you fire up the Kindle book store on a laptop or tablet, you’re treated to speedy page refreshes, full-colour images of lots of book covers, quick and easy searches; the list goes on. Fire it up on an e-ink device and it’s like wading through treacle with your eyes closed.
More and more I’m turning to my MBA so that I can scour the Kindle store for a new book. Amazon’s technology is so good that I can buy a book from my laptop and have it sent to my Kindle, and when I next switch on my Kindle the book is there waiting for me. However, it’s frustrating that I can’t have a good book-buying experience from the device I’ve bought to read the books on. I’m starting to wonder if I need to get a Kindle Fire, or just use my iPad and its Kindle app. The problem with those devices is that the screens are not as good for reading as the e-ink Kindles.
What I’d like to see is the e-ink Kindles upgraded to make the browsing and selection of books as good an experience as it is on a laptop or tablet. But please don’t sacrifice the fantastic reading experience along the way.