An advanced, cost-effective option for readers on the go

We’ve tested it in a range of settings, considering how comfortable it is to grip, on-screen display, and battery life (The Independent)

E-readers are easy to use, reliable, have good battery life, and provide access to thousands of books in one small device. While nothing beats the feel of a real paper book, e-readers take up less space and provide a better reading experience than on a tablet or mobile phone. And with an e-reader like the Kindle in your bag, you’ll never be without something to read.

The Amazon Kindle is one of the most popular e-readers on the market. Released in 2007 when it was dubbed “the iPod of reading,” the first Kindle was a simple device – there was only one model without a touchscreen, a full-size keyboard, and a scroll wheel for navigation. Nowadays, there are three types of Kindle to choose from; the original Kindle (£ 69.99, Amazon.co.uk), Kindle paperwhite (£ 79.99, Amazon.co.uk) and Kindle Oasis (£ 229.99, Amazon.co.uk), with a few new iterations the launch of the paperwhite model at the end of October.

Each model shares the same basic features, including access to books and magazines from the Amazon store. The Amazon store is the only place where you will be able to access the content because, unlike other eBook readers, there is no way to buy books anywhere else. Kindle also supports access to the Amazon Family Library, which will allow you to share your books and content with other members of your household. This is ideal if you want to share books with others in your home, and you can add up to four child accounts.

The 10th generation Kindle paperwhite sits in the middle of the three current models. It features some significant changes from the previous version, including its water resistance and the addition of support for Audible. It is also a very affordable model, as it is not the cheapest in the range but not the most expensive either. With the launch of a new version of the Kindle paperwhite imminent, we took a look at the 10th generation model to see if it is still worth buying.

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How we tested

We spent a week using the Kindle paperwhite to test the ease of use, battery life, ease of downloading books and magazines, and screen quality. We’ve also used it in a variety of settings, from outdoors in the sun to the lights going out at bedtime.

Amazon Kindle paperwhite 10th generation

Evaluation: 9/10

  • Display: 6 inches

  • Storage room: 8 GB or 32 GB

  • Connectivity: Wifi, wifi and 4G, Bluetooth

  • Dimensions: 167mm x 116mm x 8.18mm

  • Weight: 182g

  • Waterproof: Up to 2m

  • Drums: 6 weeks

  • Advantages: Water resistant design, audible support, anti-glare screen

  • The inconvenients: Micro-USB charger, no color temperature adjustment

The Kindle Paperwhite comes with 8 GB or 32 GB of storage. To put that in perspective, 8GB holds around 6,000 pounds while the 32GB option holds around 15,000. The Kindle Paperwhite we tested was the 8GB version with wifi and ads.

How much does it cost?

Prices for the Kindle paperwhite start at £ 99.99 for an 8GB Wi-Fi version with ads. The 32GB Wi-Fi device will set you back £ 119.99. It should be noted that as we approach the 11th generation of the paperwhite release, the option to purchase the 8GB and 32GB wifi-only versions of this ad-free Kindle is no longer available. However, once you own the device, you can remove the ads through settings for a cost of around £ 10. The 32 GB wifi and mobile internet device (4G) will cost £ 169.99; this version comes with ads disabled automatically.

Design and display

The 10th Generation Kindle Paperwhite is the thinnest and lightest Kindle to date. It’s not the most expensive Kindle in the lineup, but it still feels premium. The back has a rubber texture which is comfortable to hold and makes it easier to grip. It weighs only 183g, so you can comfortably hold it in one hand for long periods of time without getting tired. While fingerprint marks are easily displayed, that’s nothing a good deal wouldn’t solve.

This Kindle has a 6 inch eink touchscreen with 300 ppi resolution. The display looks a lot like paper with crisp, crisp text. We found the pages turned quickly and the touchscreen very responsive. It has five LED lights located on the front, so reading in dark spaces is no problem. There is no color temperature adjustment so when reading at night it gives off a bit of blue light. Obviously, nowhere near as much as what you would get from a phone or tablet, but if you read before bed and are sensitive to blue light, it could cause problems. The screen isn’t dazzling, so reading in different lights, including direct sunlight, was no problem.

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This version of the Kindle has also undergone a major facelift compared to its predecessor. The bezels are now aligned, making scrolling more comfortable and an overall experience more elegant. It uses a micro USB cable for charging, and the slot is on the base next to the power button. The placement works well because it keeps the edges clear, so there’s no risk of accidentally pressing buttons while you’re in the middle of a good chapter.

Software and Features

Kindle software is unified across all Kindle models. However, this version comes with additional features, such as setting up individual profiles, which is great if you share your device. One feature we loved about Profiles is setting font preferences which can be changed even in the middle of a chapter. This is great news if you use it to read with your kids, as you can select a larger font for their profile, but switch back to a smaller font when it’s your turn to read.

The brightness can also be easily adjusted, so that wherever you read you can get the right level of light. A dark mode will show white text on a black background, so it’s useful if you have eye problems or don’t want to strain your eyes too much when reading in the dark.

Read more: How to pre-order the new Kindle paperwhite in the UK

Of course, the important advantage of Kindle software is the Amazon store, which means that you have access to millions of eBooks and audiobooks. The downside is that you can’t download your ebooks from other vendors, but with the choice on Amazon, we don’t think you’ll have to worry about running out. You can also upload your own documents by sending them to an email address assigned to your Kindle. This is handy for any working pdf or study notes you might want to browse.

Every model of this Kindle has built-in wifi, you can buy it with 4G support, but we don’t think this service is essential. If you’re on the go and desperately need to download a book, you can just use your phone’s hotspot feature to connect to wifi, which would be a cheaper and probably faster option too.

As we mentioned earlier in this review, the 8GB Kindle paperwhite comes with ads with no current purchase option. We liked the ads, they aren’t intrusive and only show on the lock screen, so you won’t even notice they’re there. Plus, they have some really good suggestions as they are based on the books you have already purchased. However, by going to settings, you can pay to remove them if they’re bothering you.

One of our favorite features of this version of Kindle paperwhite is that it is waterproof. So if you like to read in the tub or sit by the pool, you won’t have to worry about it getting wet. If you drop it in the water, there is nothing to worry about. The IPX8 rating claims that it can survive submersion to depths of up to 2m for 60 minutes in freshwater and 0.25m for three minutes in seawater. We have to admit that we haven’t threw our Kindle in the water for that long, but we splashed and soaked it a few times to test it, and there was no effect.

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This Kindle also supports Audible, which is great news if you enjoy listening to your books as well as reading them. It works by connecting your Bluetooth headphones or speakers to your Kindle. Also, one feature that we found quite interesting is the ‘whisper sync’: if you have both the eBook and the audiobook in the same title, the Kindle will automatically recognize where you are in the book and you will be able to switch between reading and listening seamlessly. This is a very good function if you like listening to audiobooks in the car but want to sit and listen to the words when you are not driving.

Goodreads is also built into this version of the software, which is handy if you like to keep up to date with what your friends are reading. The drop-down home screen also offers unlimited Kindle suggestions so you won’t run out of ideas the next time you read.

Battery life

There is no denying that the battery life on the Amazon Kindle is superb. Kindles measure battery life in weeks, not hours. Official Amazon figures say the battery lasts for six weeks, but that’s based on around 30 minutes of use per day and with the wifi turned off. We used it for about an hour every day, with the wifi on and at around 80% brightness last week, and the battery dropped by around 40%. So we think it would last at least three weeks using it like we did, which will give you two weeks of vacation and more. But even if the battery is low, a full charge only takes about three hours.

The verdict: Kindle paperwhite 10th generation

If you already own an older version of the Kindle paperwhite, you might not notice a drastic change in this model. However, the integration of Audible and waterproofing is enough to convince us that this is a good upgrade to do. The narrow, flush bezels also make this Kindle much more comfortable to handle, and the 300 ppi colorless display almost looks like reading a paper book, so it’s very pleasing to the eye.

Whether you are a casual reader or an avid book reader, the Kindle paperwhite is a solid and reliable option. Kindle 11th gen prices will start from £ 139 for the base model, so if you’re looking for a budget option, the 10th gen is it.

Buy Now £ 79.99, Amazon.co.uk

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About Natalee Broderick

Natalee Broderick

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