A new listing for a waterproof Kindle Paperwhite has turned up on Amazon this week, just in time to miss the peak beach-going season here in the US. The product itself has been around for a couple years now, but this is reportedly the first time it has been listed on Amazon's site.
For $240 you get last-year's Kindle Paperwhite, an ad-free reading experience, and a promise that it will work at depths of up to 200 feet.
The waterproof KPW is not sold by Amazon but by Waterfi, a company that provides an aftermarket waterproofing service for mobile electronics. In addition to the Paperwhite, the company carries Fitbit, iPods, Nike Fuelband, and waterproofed headphones in its store, and it also offers a custom waterproofing service.
Rather than seal the case (like the Kobo Aura H20), Waterfi protects the internal electronics with a nanocoating that is both waterproof and non-conductive.This makes it possible for water to get into a devices case without impacting performance or shorting out the device.
It comes at a price, though. Waterfi's service adds an additional $100 to the price of the Kindle Paperwhite, and it's not even the newest model. The description suggests that Waterfi is still selling last year's model, the one with 4GB of storage but without the 300ppi screen found on the third-gen Paperwhite.
But if you need to use your Kindle at extreme depths or in extreme weather conditions, it could be worth it.
Just don't leave it submerged for too long; one reviewer noticed that an overnight dunk resulted in a nonfunctional frontlight. On the other hand, Waterfi is boasting of a new waterproofing process so they might have fixed that problem.