Amazon Gives Kindle E-Reader a Makeover

SEATTLE (The Seattle Times/TNS) -

Amazon.com’s newest iteration of its Kindle e-reader device is thinner, lighter and the same price it was before.

The Kindle, Amazon’s flagship and entry-level e-reader model, is getting a makeover to make it slimmer and rounder, aiming to make it easier to use by those who like to read one-handed.

The new version will weigh 5.7 ounces, about 16 percent less than the current version. It also is about 11 percent thinner and is available in white as well as black.

The new model, announced Wednesday, will have twice as much memory capacity as its predecessor, holding about the same number of books but with a speedier processor.

That extra power is especially helpful for readers using VoiceView, a voice-to-text service aimed at readers with visual impairments.

The new Kindle will be Bluetooth-enabled and will not require a $20 adapter for VoiceView users, but rather can connect via Bluetooth to similarly equipped speakers or headphones.

The Kindle costs $79.99 and is at the low end of a line that includes the illuminated Paperwhite, Voyage and the recently introduced Oasis.

Amazon also announced that the Paperwhite, its best-selling model, will now be available in white.

The new Kindle, now available for preorders, will begin shipping in the next few weeks, the company said.