For months, I browsed the e-reader market in search of a winner. After carefully examining Barnes & Noble’s Nook, Amazon’s Kindle and a host of other candidates I settled on the Kindle because it had:
- a lower-price
- the ability to sync between devices on a book-by-book, page-by-page basis. Meaning, with WhisperSync if I stopped reading on my Kindle at home, I could grab a iPhone or iPod Touch and read on the go, right where I left off.
- a huge library
- wi-fi built in
- a great screen
- exclusive rights with some publishers. While I can’t say I like it – Amazon signs exclusivity agreements with some publishers. I didn’t want to have the possibility of not getting a title on an e-reader.
In the months leading up to my birthday, Amazon released an additional version of the Kindle with Special Offers. Save $25 and receive Special Offers periodically on the Kindle. At first glance I was a bit skeptical. But the Special Offers never appear while you read and only appear on the “Home” screen and when the screensaver turns on.
I decided to go with the Special Offers version and save the $25. In just about three days, the Kindle arrived pre-configured with my Amazon account, complete with a “Hello Danny, welcome to Kindle” letter when I powered it on. Not necessary but a nice touch.
As I flipped on the wi-fi, downloaded some sample books and began reading, I noticed the ads on the home screen. The static ad wasn’t obtrusive, but I didn’t really need any summer swim wear from Amazon. Oh well, I saved $25, right?
To my surprise, over the last several weeks, the Special Offers have actually been really good deals. Since I was already planning on purchasing a few books, these deals have been quite “special”.
- $20 Amazon Credit for $10
- $10 Amazon Credit if you use a VISA card for any order
- 1 Kindle book for $1 ( thousands of titles)
I’m not sure if the “Special Offers well” will dry up, but I’m a fan. You get all the benefits of a regular Kindle with additional Special Offers. The ads rotate periodically whenever you connect via wi-fi or USB and again, don’t interrupt the reading of books.
What kind of effect will the Kindle have on my reading? Will I read more? What about printed books? Libraries? It’s too early to tell, but if you’re in the market for an e-reader – the Kindle with Special Offers is definitely a solid choice.