The Amazon Kindle is an absolutely amazing piece of tech that works so great for travel as well. So, how can a device that weights 6.4 ounces, is .3″ thick, has a battery that lasts up to 6 weeks, with a built-in light and the capability to hold thousands of books get even more travel ready? Well, enter the new Kindle Paperwhite and the Kindle Paperwhite Signature.
The Amazon Kindle is Better For Travel Than Ever
I have owned Kindle e-readers since the 2nd generation (I still have that one!) as that was a gift to me. Back then, they costed more than $400 and had much slower refresh of the e-ink display. Now, I have bought them for as little as $1, the displays refresh much quicker and they are more compact. But, Amazon has not stopped trying to make them even better and that is what brings us to the new Kindle Paperwhite (2021) and a new one called the Kindle Paperwhite Signature (2021).
The New Kindle Paperwhite 2021 Edition
So, what has changed that can make this better than all previous models? For starters, they stretched the display ever so slightly to get a 6.8″ display vs the previous 6″ display. This doesn’t quite reach the 7″ display on the top-of-the-line Kindle Oasis but it sure gets close!
Battery Life – 60% Increase
But, for travelers, Amazon not only put a larger display in it but they also put a better battery life that will now give you up to 10 weeks of battery life which is 4 weeks longer than the previous model. I know, people may say, what’s the big deal when you are talking weeks of battery life? Well, that is best-case scenario. That is based on 30 minutes of reading per day with a lower light setting and wireless off. If you are reading for an entire flight, that will put down those weeks of battery life quicker. So, more battery life means less a chance that you will need to charge it on the next trip.
USB C Charging
But, if you do need to charge it, you can finally ditch that micro-USB charging cable that you likely only kept around for charging the Amazon Kindle. Now, Kindle charges with the very popular USB C input. This is great for anyone like myself who has pretty much everything charging off such a cable – tablet, computer, camera, headphones, etc. Now, I can just bring one cable for everything! Plus, it charges faster.
As long as we are talking faster, the new Kindle Paperwhite will not get 20% quicker page turns. It was already pretty fast so I do not see anyone upgrading for that extra 20% but if you are coming from a much older model or to an e-reader for the first time, you will certainly enjoy that snappier page turn.
Other Stuff About the Kindle Paperwhite
You still get to take the Kindle Paperwhite near water with its IPX8 rating. This means it will be protected if accidentally dropping it in up to 2 meters of fresh water for up to 60 minutes (who is accidentally dropping it into water for an hour anyway?!) and even up to .25 meters (less than a foot) of seawater for up to 3 minutes. So, you are good for bathtub reading, pool reading, and even reading next to the sea.
For a new first this time also on the Paperwhite model, you can actually adjust the color temperature of the kindle to be a warmer color for those times when it gets darker and you don’t want the bright white. You can change this manually or set a time for it to adjust. This is not an automatic shifting like you get with the Kindle Oasis but still something you can control on your own.
The Kindle Paperwhite Signature
Normally, Amazon releases their basic Kindle and the Kindle Paperwhite around October. This year, they broke from that by seemingly making the Kindle Paperwhite be their “base” model for the update and the new Kindle Paperwhite Signature being the higher end version.
For the extra $50 this will cost you (ringing in at a regular price of $189), here is what is different. You get 32GB of storage vs 8GB (which is great if you like switching between reading books or listening to them with Audible), wireless charging (if you have embraced that mode of charging), and auto-adjusting front light based on the amount of light around you.
Everything else is the same as the regular Kindle Paperwhite model. It seems Amazon wanted to fill the gap between the $129-139 range of Kindle and the high-end $249 Kindle Oasis. This slot used to be filled by the Kindle Voyage (which remains my favorite Kindle ever) but that was retired a few years ago.
Saving Money on the new Kindles (2021 Models)
So, how can you save money on these all-new Kindles that won’t even ship until October 27, 2021? Well, if you have to have them at launch, here is how you can save money. Remember that it is very likely we will see some nice discounts on them around Black Friday but those sales could be restricted to the regular Kindle Paperwhite or maybe not at all since this last year has seen some weird things in terms of sales and supply chains.
For starters, if you have an older Amazon device, you can trade it in, get a small gift card for the trade in amount and get 20% off a Kindle! Details here.
Next, if you have a credit card in one of the points programs below, you can try and see if you are eligible for any of these ongoing discounts. Since they only work for items shipped and sold by Amazon.com, you are good to go using them for these Kindles.
- American Express Membership Rewards – Get $20 off $65 or more using just 1 Amex point at checkout
- Chase Ultimate Rewards – Get $10 off $30 or more using just 1 Chase point at checkout
- Citi ThankYou Points – Get 20% off (max of $30) when using 1 Citi point at checkout
- Discover Points – Get 40% off (max of $20) when using 1 Discover point at checkout