Amazon has replaced its least satisfactory and highest priced Kindle today after a brief 18 months on the market.
The new Kindle Oasis looks a lot like the earlier model, only it is waterproof and will cost $249 when it ships on 31 October.
And oh yes, the new Oasis has a 7″, 300 ppi E-ink screen.
Amazon’s newest Kindle has what Amazon is now calling a 7″ Paperwhite display. It has a frontlight and touchscreen, and a screen resolution of 1680 x 1264.
Edit: found it.
Amazon never got back to me on the screen resolution before this posted, so I’m not sure what it is – I’m not even sure if that is a 7″ screen and not an improved 6.8″ screen similar to the one Kobo uses on the Aura H2O. (We’ll have to look into this later in the day.)
At 194 grams, the new Oasis is bigger than its predecessor, and also comes with more storage – 8GB or 32GB – but it still has the same lopsided one-handed design.
Don’t get me wrong, I like one-handed ereaders – it’s just that with the first Oasis, Amazon got cute by dividing the battery between the case and the ereader, forcing you to choose between either a lightweight device with disappointing battery life or a heavy one with adequate battery life. Not only did this take all the fun out of the design, faulty connections between the Oasis and its case resulted in several early reports of battery issues.
Fortunately, Amazon fixed that problem with the new Oasis model, putting the battery inside the Oasis, giving it an acceptable life measuring in weeks. And according to Amazon, it’s IPX8 rated to protect against immersion in up to two meters of fresh water for up to 60 minutes.
According to the press release, the new Oasis does not have a battery case, and that’s great news.
What’s also great news is that the new Oasis has Bluetooth (and Wifi, obviously). And to answer your next question, yes, you can pair the new Oasis with a BT speaker and play audiobooks. The previous model had audio, but only for its accessibility feature – and that required a USB dongle.
The new Oasis is better in every way, and that includes the software. According to the press release, the Oasis has 5 levels of boldness as well an option to invert the screen colors to give you white text on a black screen. You will also be able to increase the size of items like the text on the home screen and library as well as the book icons.
Between one thing and the other, the new software features are going to make the Kindle a heck of a lot nicer for those with vision impairment.
Amazon has given us many reasons to buy the new Oasis, but if you have an older Kindle, you’re in luck: they’re getting the new software features in an update which comes out today.
The listing for the new Kindle Oasis should be live by the time you read this post.