12 Really Awesome Things About a Kindle

by Marie

As a long-time owner of a Kindle device from the very clunky 1st generation down to the sleek offerings available today, here's celebrating what's great about these Amazon devices.

The Kindle just keeps on getting better and better! I've owned many generations of this clever Amazon gadget, right way back from the very first generation of products which I imported over from the USA because I was so very keen to get my hands on one, right down through to the current day with a full color Fire tablet.

When Amazon first started to make the gray-scale readers, they were pretty pricey and also very clunky too. However, it was a really cool new technology where you could read books on a portable screen without needing to strain your eyes or with having to be sat at a computer screen. It suddenly opened up the chance to sit and enjoy reading outside if you wanted too with ease. This wonderful feature may not really seem all that remarkable now - but it was a big deal back then. Here's the great things about these very brilliant little gadgets that I still love.

1) Free and Discounted Books to Read

You can very quickly build up a big digital library of books and reading material with a Kindle so you should never be stuck for something to read. If you look very carefully around the Amazon website, they always have a lot of free and discounted books that are available to you and there are other sites to that offer free .mobi files that work with the device.

Also, Amazon have their very own version of a special Lending Library that is available for their Prime members to take advantage of. If you don't tend to read those brand new best sellers as soon as they hit the shelves, you can find a ridiculous amount of choice and pay nothing at all for it.

12 Really Awesome Things About a Kindle
12 Really Awesome Things About a Kindle
Image is in the Public Domain from Pixabay and has been altered by the author

I'm a big fan of the old classic and traditional books like Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen and Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte. You can get free versions of these classics which is fantastic or you can pay very small amounts for compilations of classics that have been put together into a single volume. So essentially you can read to your heart's content all on a shoe-string budget.

Take care to really spend some time browsing around the Kindle store section on the Amazon website because you will find so many sections on deals and promotions on books with daily, weekly and monthly promotions going on. Here's a great tip that I use myself. If I see an ebook that I really want but the price is more than I want to pay, then I add the book into my wishlist on the site and then I can much more easily keep an eye on the price which I check periodically so I can grab it if and when the price drops. Often, they do become cheaper at some point in time and I've saved a lot of money this way.

2) Inbuilt Dictionary Lookup and Search

One simple and powerful yet often really overlooked bonus with these devices is the integrated dictionary lookup feature. Having a full and comprehensive dictionary built right into every single book you read is an amazing thing and yet so many people just take this for granted with these types of devices. 

I can remember back to the days of having to put down my paper book and then go off and hunt for a dictionary because I was itching to know what the author meant by a particular word or phrase. It could be pretty annoying and it also interrupted the natural flow of reading. 

Now you can simply discover what something means at once since these devices have dictionaries built in that you can use - with the touch versions it's as simple as pressing on a word. 

On the newer touch screen models such as the Fire, Paperwhite and Voyage, all you need to do is to tap (tap and press) on the word on the screen and you will see a definition of the word displayed on the screen for you from the dictionary. This is fantastic while you are reading but you can also use your device as a regular dictionary by locating the actual book (normally the Oxford Dictionary) on the gadget and opening it up. Then you really will have a whole world of information right in front of you.

The search feature too is simply brilliant and especially while reading lengthy books or factual and academic ones. Forget who a character is? Need to find information on a particular topic in the book? No problem. Simply do a search inside the book for what you need which is much faster than trying to find something in a paper version.

E-Ink Amazon Kindle Gadget - A Pleasure to Read On
E-Ink Amazon Kindle Gadget - A Pleasure to Read On
Image is in the Public Domain from Pixabay

3) Sharp Screen Display for Reading or Multimedia

As well as the Paperwhite which I use exclusively for reading, I also own the newest version of the Fire HDX which has a really lovely and sharp, full color screen. It's really good for a whole range of activities and I mainly use it for listening to audiobooks, checking my email, watching movies and browsing the Internet but you can do many other things on it too such as playing games.

The screen display of the Fire is better either indoors, in the shade and even when used at night time since it has a bright screen. However, it is not great (as with most tablets) under bright sunlight which makes it much harder to see.

If reading in really sunny and bright conditions is especially important to you, then do invest in an e-ink model like the latest Paperwhite which I can definitely recommend for this. For reading in these conditions, there is nothing I have found that is better. This is the model that I like to load up with lots of books and take on vacation with me!

4) Quickly Find What You Want

Before Amazon produced the Kindle, our small home was overrun with hundreds and hundreds of books since we all love to read. Like many people, we had shelving and cabinets located all over the home which made it a challenge if you wanted to find a specific book.

Now, since everything is all stored and accessed via my Paperwhite, it is so much easier to find what I want. If I can remember the title or the author then it is easy to do a search to find it or sometimes I will just flick through and look at the thumbnail book covers instead to see what I fancy reading next. You can group related topics into Collections so I like to keep all my crochet books in one Collection where I can easily see and browse through them all and all my fantasy fiction material in another.

You can hold all these books and many more all on a single Kindle device
You can hold all these books and many more all on a single Kindle device
Image is in the Public Domain from Pixabay

5) Remembering Your Position in Books

One small feature that I love is that it doesn't matter if you want to dip in and out of a variety of material since your Kindle will remember where you last got to so you don't need to rack your head for that when you come back to something later on.

If you read across a number of different devices then you may want to make sure you do a manual sync when you finish reading to ensure that your last read place is picked up by all devices - they need to be connected to wifi or 3G for this to happen of course. You can tap on your screen to set up a bookmark to mark your place or location but you really don't need to do this to mark where you read up to.

6) Portable, Light and Very Easy to Hold

Whatever version you choose, whether it happens to be the simple grayscale e-ink kind intended more for reading only or a full color tablet version, they are all much lighter and easier to hold than their earlier generations. I look back at my earliest devices and think of them as bricks compared to the new ones. Amazon keep making these as thin and as lightweight as they can and a new e-ink Kindle without a cover on it will weigh less than most paperbacks which means it is nicer to hold for a long period of time.

The weight of this should not be an issue for most people. However if you suffer from something that affects the mobility in your hands then you may want to test out using one first to make sure it will be suitable and then look to get a case or cover for it which is easily removable when you need to use it. I rarely hold mine in my hands. I will normally pop it onto my lap while seated instead. There are also stands that you can buy or clever cases that come with built in stands.

7) Perfect for Night Owls

If you tend to be a bit of a night-owl like me and watch movies or stay up to read in bed late at night then you will appreciate one of the devices with a built in light like the Paperwhite for reading or the Fire for movie watching. Back years ago, I had to use a clip on light and then a light that was built into a case for reading with on my Keyboard version. These light sources were nowhere near as good as having a light built into the screen where it is distributed more evenly over the whole page of text rather than having a spot of light held over the screen which is bright in one section and gradually gets darker. 

Enjoy a really good read
Enjoy a really good read
Image is in the Public Domain from Pixabay

8) Listening to Podcasts and Audiobooks

Available on Certain Models Only

Some older models of the e-ink versions like the Keyboard allow you to add on music and audiobooks which is a feature that Amazon moved away from as they made these more exclusively for reading. Of course you can read, listen to music, audiobooks and podcasts on one of the Fire tablet versions instead.

Sometimes I can't read since I may be doing work around the home like cooking or ironing and, on those occasions, I often love to listen to a podcast or audiobook instead on my Fire. The speakers on that are loud enough for me to hear with although you can also add a portable speaker into the headphone jack if you need to ramp the sound up.

9) Great for Hobbies and Interests

I have many hobbies that I enjoy such as birdwatching, gardening and crafts of all kinds. It's really handy to have books on these topics that I can refer to at any time. With crochet, I can read patterns off the screen and with cooking I can easily find all my favorite recipes by bookmarking them and then I can use this to quickly view methods and ingredients while in the kitchen. I will store books on related hobbies into Collections which is a way of grouping related content together. This makes the content easier to find and browse through. 

10) Taking Notes is Good for Study and More

The Fire tablet is even more useful all round because you can use features like a note or jotter app in order to make quick notes such as ideas and often my grocery list. But you can also take notes on any book you are reading which is perfect for active rather than passive readers like me - just highlight a word or passage and you get an option to take notes too. On the tablet, these highlights can be marked with different colors which could be particularly useful for study and research. It's so quick and easy to mark and take note of sections and passages of text that you need to remember or come back to. 

Cruising with an E-ink Kindle Device is The Best Way to Read!
Cruising with an E-ink Kindle Device is The Best Way to Read!
Image belongs to the author of this article: Marie Williams Johnstone

11) Vacations are Now Way More Fun

Going on a vacation now is so much easier now I don't need to make lots of room for books and magazines in my case. If you choose to take the tablet version of the Fire with you, you will be able to read, listen to music, audiobooks and podcasts, watch movies, play games, check you email and access the Internet. Assuming you can get wifi then your gadget will work just as it would normally.

If you know that you will not have access to any Internet, you can easily download games, audiobooks, reading material, movies, music and more onto your device - depending how much space you have available. Remember that movies tend to take up the most room. You will find that there are some games that require the Internet in order to be played which is something to be aware of. I tend to download things even if I will have a wifi connection just in case it is a poor signal - which sometimes it is. Having some items downloaded onto the device means I'm never disappointed.

When going away and planning to read a lot in the bright sunshine, you'll be much better off using an e-ink device such as the Paperwhite which works perfectly under super bright rays of light. You can see me reading in the sun above on my older gen device while away on a cruise.

12) Do Try Before You Buy with Samples or Look Inside

I love this feature. You can really reduce the amount of books you buy but never finish reading just by trying out a sample of it first which gives you a feel for the content. This feature is available on the actual product page. Some samples will generously provide a good chapter while some may supply just a table of contents which is less useful - so it can be a little hit and miss. However, I make sure to do this before spending much money.

In addition, there is also the Look Inside option that exists for many books across the Amazon store (look at the cover of the book on the full website) and this lets you browse through sections of the book to see what is inside. These two brilliant features have saved me from quite a few purchasing errors over the years! I hope you've enjoyed reading my wizzles page today, thanks for your visit. There's a quick poll below for you to take part in.

What Things Do You Love about a Kindle?

Updated: 02/19/2016, Marie
Thank you! Would you like to post a comment now?

Your Comments

iggy on 12/28/2015

I am looking into writing books for kindle, thank you for the article.

marthasimons on 09/03/2015

Greate post

Maritravel on 08/23/2015

I'm afraid I'm a total Luddite, I love my books and can't imagine life without them. I use a Kindle but only for travelling as it's easier than carrying the number of books I used to take on vacation but I still take one to read on the 'plane (and one to come home with) and still pack a couple, just in case. I miss the feel of paper, the smell of the book, the 'thing' that is the book, the story and the connection between me and the author. The Kindle is useful but like all technology it should take its place alongside that which it has displaced. I use it for music but I used to take a Walkman (same size but more CDs to carry) but the tone isn't the same. I couldn't imagine watching a movie on the Kindle, nor could I watch one on my large desktop - either a very widescreen TV or the cinema, the latter for choice.

And I'd miss, so much, my book shelves all over the house and the ability to go to them and pick up a favourite book, the colours, the worn spines, the memories. Ah! that's it, my Kindle has no memories.

sheilamarie on 07/24/2015

I have yet to take the plunge with these devices. I still really love my paper books, but your article has highlighted all the reasons that I would love one if I were to own one. Hmmm.

Marie on 07/07/2015

Books with images are much better viewed on the tablet Kindle Fires - they always seem a little clunky on the black and white eink devices which are much better just for text. Hopefully they have fixed that issue for you.

blackspanielgallery on 06/15/2015

I have not bought one, but have had books available on there. I had a problem some years back with equations, since I write mathematics. They go in as images and were ending up in the wrong places when people changed the print size. I do not know if they fixed this problem yet.

Marie on 06/13/2015

That is so true. Going back to the days pre-Kindle would not be fun! Thanks for your visit.

happynutritionist on 06/11/2015

I can't imagine life without my Kindle, I use it every single day!

Marie on 05/28/2015

Yes, you can quickly end up with a big assortment of books from checking all the deals out. I'd rather have too many books to choose from though :)

Marie on 05/28/2015

If you are interested then look out for deal prices that Amazon do on Kindles from time to time. I got my husband's Paperwhite this way and saved enough to buy him a cover as well.

You might also like

Evernote on Kindle

Evernote on Kindle shows you how to use the well-known notepad app, Evernote,...

Kindle Light Cover

Everything you could possibly need to know about the Kindle Light Cover which...

Disclosure: This page generates income for authors based on affiliate relationships with our partners, including Amazon, Google and others.
Loading ...