Amazon Kindle or Apple iPad Mini? The Amazon Kindle was designed as a dedicated e-book reader with a grayscale e-ink display. The Apple iPad Mini on the other hand is a powerful tablet computer and portable media player with a full color 7.9 inch touch screen LCD display. As such the only realistic comparison one can make between these two devices is the experience of accessing and reading e-books. Any other comparison would be unfair to the Amazon Kindle as it was not designed as anything more than an e-reader.
Apart from the fantastic iBooks and Stanza apps, Amazon has released a Kindle app for the Apple iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch (as well as for other mobile devices) so this gives us a common platform for comparing the e-reading experience on both devices.Wi-Fi + 3G connectivity (3G available on selected models) The Amazon Kindle and Apple iPad are both able to connect to the internet wirelessly to access the Amazon store and the users account to browse, purchase and download e-books.
While the Wi-Fi connectivity on both devices are on par, the Kindle trumps the iPad when it comes to 3G connectivity as browsing and downloading e-books over a 3G network from the Kindle is free anywhere in the world whereas 3G usage on the iPad incurs data charges.Form Factor Both devices utilise a tablet or slate form factor which feels comfortable in the hand. The Amazon Kindle weighs just 8.
7 ounces (0.20kg) while the Apple iPad clocks in at 1.6 pounds (0.73kg). Since most of us like to read in a comfortable chair or laying down (and not at a desk) the iPad does feel a bit heavy after a while and can become strenuous to hold even after a short duration. The Kindle though feels light and comfortable and can be used for extended periods of time without causing any strain or discomfort, and in fact weight less than a regular paperback novel.
Screen Comparison (E-Ink vs LCD) The Amazon Kindle uses a 6” grayscale e-ink screen while the Apple iPad Mini uses a 7.9” full color touch screen LCD. Both devices replicate the look of a paper page very well, but in all honesty, the e-ink display is far superior to the LCD as it is does not cause any eye-strain. Reading on the iPad is no different to reading on your computers LCD monitor and gets a little heavy on the eyes after a while. The iPad’s LCD screen is backlit, which means you can read in the dark but not very well in sunlight or bright rooms due to the glare on the iPad’s glossy screen.
The Kindle’s e-ink screen does not have a backlight so you will have to be in a lit room to read (or use a lighted Kindle case) but reading in direct sunlight is possible as there is little to no glare. The Amazon Kindle Fire HD features an 8.9” LCD screen, which is slightly larger than the screen on the iPad Mini and may be an option for those looking for a slightly larger screen sizeClosing Thoughts If you are comparing the Amazon Kindle and Apple iPad then you are most likely in the market for an e-reader and not a tablet computer.
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