Editor’s Update August 2010: The latest generation of the Amazon Kindle DX with 50% better contrast is now available at a reduced price of $379! Plus, you’ll enjoy 3G wireless coverage at home or abroad in over 100 countries and territories.
The matchup between the Amazon Kindle vs Apple iPad should prove to be an interesting one. After all, the recent launch of the iPad and all the hype surrounding it has brought on a slew of predictions — with one of these speculations being that the iPad could put the Kindle (and any handheld ebook reader for that matter) in serious trouble.
So is there really basis for such talk? As they say “where there’s smoke there’s fire,” but in an industry that’s been completely dominated by the Kindle so far, it’s hard to imagine that it has finally met its match. And more importantly, what features does the iPad have that the Kindle doesn’t? It turns out there are a number of them and we thought it best to lay the Kindle vs iPad side by side to see where one can really determine the advantage of one gadget over the other. Note that for this discussion, we’re basing our comparison on the 6-inch Kindle.
As a Multi-Function Gadget
As we may all be familiar now, the Kindle is basically a handheld ebook reading device. On the other hand, with the iPad, the user can do a lot of things including play high-definition movies, TV and games, do web browsing via Wi-fi or 3G, and read ebooks. If you want a device that is capable of doing a lot of stuff besides ebook reading, then the iPad is definitely for you.
As an Ebook-Reader
With its 9.7-inch LCD, the iPad has the larger screen as compared to the 6-inch Kindle e-ink screen. But as far as reading ebooks goes, most of those who own e-readers are aware that the electronic ink display is still the better screen for reading. A bright colored LCD may be perfect for internet browsing and streaming videos, but reading from one for long periods will cause strain on the eyes — something that you won’t have problems with, with e-ink technlogy. The Kindle also has the advantage when it comes to battery life because it can last up to 2 weeks, while the iPad can be used for only about 10 hours without recharging.
The Price of the Device
For the many functions that it is capable of doing, the iPad’s cost which starts at $499 is quite reasonable. However, the Kindle still is easier on the pocket with its $259 price tag. The Kindle ebooks are also cheaper at $9.99, although a note on the Amazon site specifically states “unless marked otherwise.” This makes the iPad books, which are rumored to cost $12.99 and $14.99, a tad more expensive.
Which Is the Better Choice?
Obviously, there are still a lot of other features and specifications of both devices that we have not included in this comparison but as far as the reading enthusiast is concerned, these are perhaps the most important aspects to consider. So which takes the cake? It would all depend on the needs of the potential buyer. What this Kindle vs iPad review can say with certainty though, is that the iPad is a gadget of multiple uses while the Kindle is THE gadget for ebook reading.