Recently I have been debating on whether to get a Netbook or the Kindle 2. (I am only in this debate because my lovely wife decided to buy a table and chairs, for the house. There is no winning when they buy things for ‘the house’ or ‘the kids’).
Anyways, I tweeted up my dilemma and got a huge amount of responses. They came from both sides of the fence. Some said Kindle and some said Netbook, and they all had good arguments. But, being the gadget nerd that I am and having owned a netbook before I started to lean towards the Kindle. Until I looked at the Kindle store..
When you hear about the Kindle you hear about the cheap books (no argument there), the free EVDO (still no argument), and the fact that you can read blogs and magazines. This is where the marketing people caught me. I am a huge blog reader. I currently have 2700+ blogs in my google reader OPML (I can usually hit them all in less than an hour with a process I’ve refined, so don’t think too lowly of me). So the fact that I could read my blogs and the occasional book, and even send pdfs to the Kindle got me excited about the product.
I put the Kindle 2 in my shopping cart at Amazon, added a leather case just for S&G, and looked back at TweetDeck for any last comments people had. @hmjgriffon was completely against buying the Kindle, so I decided to try out sending a PDF to the Kindle app Amazon has for the iPhone. I had installed it a couple nights ago and hadn’t tested it.
This is where the charges started rolling in. First I find out that it is 10 cents per PDF that I have converted for use on the Kindle/iPhone App. Then I looked into the blogs, you know, just to try at least SOMETHING out before I bought it. The few blogs that they support are either 99 cents or 1.99 a month. Wait.. so let me get this straight. I have to pay $1 or $2 to view a blog that is free? No thanks. I mean they could do something cool and special with the blog, but I don’t see the market. Magazines, maybe, I think I would probably subscribe to CPU or Linux Journal if it came via Kindle (definitely 2600..).
So, I stopped, and complained on twitter about it. Then a couple people started shouting solutions, and @wardspan pointed me towards a Kindle book (and said it contained the secret to using Google Reader on the Kindle free):
The Complete User’s Guide To the Amazing Amazon Kindle 2: A Kindle Owners Toolkit Of Over 500 Tips, Tricks, & Links (For Amazons Revolutionary e-Book Reader & Free Wireless Web Browser) (Kindle Edition)
I decided to purchase it (0.99) and read it on my iPhone, for not only the contents of the book, but to kind of gauge the service for myself before I buy. I think that 99 cents is a minimal cost to find out if the Kindle truly is for me.
Hope this helps those of you who are on the fence like me.