Do you know how you can tell a hardware defect is so common that fixing it would require recalling and junking the entire product line? It's when the manufacturer starts claiming the defect is a feature.
Amazon postedfor the Kindle Paperwhite last night. They have apparently gotten so many complaints the uneven lighting, limited storage, and the lack of audio support that they felt compelled to explain their decisions. Here's what Amazon said about the frontlight:
Under certain lighting conditions, the illumination at the bottom of the screen from the built-in light is not perfectly even. See examples of how the screen looks in different lighting conditions. These variations are normal and are located primarily in the margin where text is not present.
While I won't bash Amazon about the storage and audio, clearly they are getting a lot of complaints about the frontlight. Based on my experiences I can see why.
My Kindle Paperwhite arrived in the middle of last week, and like many new KPW owners I immediately turned on the frontlight and started seeing how well it worked in various lighting conditions.
Unlike the example photos which Amazon posted (at right), my unit has a frigging huge cone shadow across the bottom of the screen. It extends at least an inch and a half from the bottom of the screen and into the text.
I don't care what Amazon says about how you're not supposed to use the highest setting anyway, or how this is still an improvement over using an external light. The first is BS and the second is not true.
Folks, if you had an LCD screen which was visibly less bright in a certain section would you accept the manufacturer's claim that it is supposed to be that way? I wouldn't, and I don't accept Amazon's claim here.
I'm planning to return my KPW. If Amazon is going to claim that this is the best they can do then I'll wait for the next generation. Or better yet, I'll buy a competing device. Onyx, Kobo, and Bookeeen all have similar devices hitting the market soon.