E-readers have never been especially popular, and what little popularity there was has mostly faded away thanks to the rise of tablets, but Amazon still isn’t quite ready to abandon the e-reader market. CEO Jeff Bezos tweeted on Monday that a next-generation Kindle will be unveiled next week, which he claims will be top of the line. It’s safe to assume that this new e-reader will be the successor to the much-loved Kindle Voyage, which is still arguably the best e-reader out there at the moment, but is starting to show its age.
E-readers may not be the most exciting space in tech these days, but some of us still find a place for them in our lives — and it is we happy few whom Jeff Bezos announced, with enthusiasm palpable, that new Kindle hardware is just around the corner. Notably, this is well off the beaten path as far as timing goes: Kindles have generally been announced in September, though it’s true that the Paperwhite was updated last June. But April? This is a new one for Amazon. So, what could it be? Always well informed on e-reader news, Nate Hoffelder (after fooling me with the promise of an electrowetting color screen) suggests this one will have a battery case, but details are thin on the ground. The fact is there aren’t many places where potential improvements are obvious. A higher-resolution screen is always welcome, allowing as it would for improved typography. Improved or expandable storage would be nice, although no one should hold out hope for a micro SD card slot. An improved and more responsive interface for selecting and annotating books would make it more useful to students.