kindle-dx-angle-280pxAh, the grand days I spent on campus… the half-mile walks between classes, the knee-buckling weight of my backpack, folders overflowing with loose notes. Ok, so I’m being a little sarcastic, but would you believe that there’s a new product on the horizon that has the potential to eliminate some of our college woes?

Even though the college life is generally a high point in our lives, most of us will never forget the years of academic drudge. Amazon’s recently announced Kindle DX quite possibly can give students a well-deserved break.

If you set aside college tuition, the next large expense for the average student is textbooks. Weighing up to a few pounds and often costing over $100 each, college textbooks are a burden to students in multiple ways. To make things worse, students have to buy these books every semester. As the semester goes by, publishers are pumping out the next version of their textbooks, forcing students to buy the latest versions instead of catching a break on used books.

So why is the Kindle DX a good choice for students? There are several reasons:

  • Pay less for books. Traditionally, Kindle books have been for sale at a reasonable discount compared to their paperback and hardback counterparts. If the textbooks offered for the kindle follow suit, students should expect to easily save a $100 per semester.
  • Greater availability and convenience. One of the things I never looked forward to was going to the campus bookstore. List in hand, I would wonder about the store looking for the books I’ve been told to purchase. Then, I stand in the checkout line with twenty pounds of books in my arms. Purchases made with the Kindle are done via Amazon’s wireless “Whispernet” connection. Kindle owners can potentially purchase their book in class, from home, where ever is most convenient.
  • Less bulk to carry across campus. Finally there’s an alternative to carrying several pounds of books on our shoulders. Personally, I think having a Kindle to store just one the required texts would be justification enough, but can you image if your entire semester’s worth of books were tucked away in a single, slim, ultra-light device?
  • Generate study notes easily. One of the features I really enjoy using with my Kindle is the notes and highlights feature. Whenever I come across something worth noting in a book, I can highlight and save a clip of the text with just a few clicks. I can then take that collection of clips and use them to find important parts of a book, or simply skim through them to refresh my memory. I think this could be a huge benefit to students.
  • It’s a Kindle. – Remember, guys, we’re still talking about the same Kindle that everyone loves to use for their everyday reading. With the DX you’ll enjoy a larger screen, built-in PDF support, an auto-rotating screen, and more available internal storage than ever!

I’m looking forward to seeing how well the new Kindle DX does in the academic market. I’m not sure if I will jump over to the new, larger format (I’m just now rocking the Kindle 2). Though, students who don’t already own a Kindle should definitely consider pre-ordering a Kindle DX, which is due out this summer. If you can’t wait that long, the popular Kindle 2 is available for immediate shipment.

Amazon Kindle DXAs mentioned on Monday, Amazon just released a new, larger Kindle titled the Kindle DX. The DX features a 9.7″ screen that is two and a half times the size of the regular Kindle. The DX is optimized for reading PDFs, newspapers, and magazines. Otherwise it behaves exactly like the regular Kindle.

This is an interesting venture for Amazon. As Melissa’s Kindle DX First Impressions article at PC World points out, the DX is an, “…expensive proposition that will make consumers think hard about buying one. But it is also a highly targeted device that can benefit from this broadening of its scope.”

Here are a few other details about the DX.

  • Slim: Just over 1/3 of an inch, as thin as most magazines
  • Carry Your Library: Holds up to 3,500 books, periodicals, and documents
  • Beautiful Large Display: 9.7″ diagonal e-ink screen reads like real paper; boasts 16 shades of gray for clear text and sharp images
  • Auto-Rotating Screen: Display auto-rotates from portrait to landscape as you turn the device so you can view full-width maps, graphs, tables, and Web pages
  • Built-In PDF Reader: Native PDF support allows you to carry and read all of your personal and professional documents on the go
  • Wireless: 3G wireless lets you download books right from your Kindle DX, anytime, anywhere; no monthly fees, no annual contracts, and no hunting for Wi-Fi hotspots
  • Books In Under 60 Seconds: You get free wireless delivery of books in less than 60 seconds; no PC required
  • Long Battery Life: Read for days without recharging
  • Read-to-Me: With the text-to-speech feature, Kindle DX can read newspapers, magazines, blogs, and books out loud to you, unless the book’s rights holder made the feature unavailable
  • Big Selection, Low Prices: Over 275,000 books; New York Times Best Sellers and New Releases are only $9.99, unless marked otherwise
  • More Than Books: U.S. and international newspapers including the New York Times and Wall Street Journal, magazines including The New Yorker and Time, plus popular blogs, all auto-delivered wirelessly

Pre-order a Kindle DX

The Kindle DX is scheduled to be released this summer. To reserve your place in line (orders are filled by first-come, first-served), click here to pre-order a Kindle DX today.

Those who wished the Kindle screen was a little bigger to make it easier to read newspapers and magazines may be getting their wish this week. According to Gizmondo and All Things Digital, Amazon is prepared to announce “…a new large-format device that’s optimized for reading newspapers and magazines.”

To me, one of the appealing things about the Kindle is its small size. Is there really a market for a Kindle with an extra large screen?

Personally, I think this is a bold move on Amazon’s part. In a time where everyone is trying to make the smallest, thinnest, lightest gadget, they are taking a different route to mimic the large feel of a magazine or newspaper. It’ll be interesting to see how this new, larger Kindle is accepted. It’ll be even more interesting to see how grandpa tries to roll it up to fit it inside his robe.

So, we’ve finally gotten around to giving KindleChat.com a face lift. Hopefully this will allow everyone to navigate the site more easily and find what they’re looking for. Beyond the new look, the most notable addition is the search feature, which is near the top of the page.

We’ve still got some things to tweak here and there, so you can expect to see more changes in the future. We’re also open to your ideas and input, so please feel free to leave a comment below!

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