Buying a new Paperwhite is a bit like buying the one you already own. Not much changes and the overall experience feels so familiar that you are left wondering what you spent the money on. It is, however, a product that many, including myself, feel nailed its intent from the very first release and if it ain’t broke…
The latest release adds serious water resistance (IPX8 rated) which is ideal when on holiday and a must have feature which is long overdue. For such a simple product I am surprised it took this long.
It is also lighter (182 grams) and slightly smaller (167 x 116 x 8.2 mm) than the previous generation and this is noticeable at first. It doesn’t take long though to forget that and to feel that the new Paperwhite is just the size it should be. The only other noticeable hardware change is the flatness of the display with no bezel ridges anymore. Theoretically this is an improvement, but for me I kind of like the dip in the middle.
You can now pair it to Bluetooth headphones to listen to audiobooks which is a nice bonus and of course your place in the book is synchronised whether you are reading or listening, a feature that still impresses me to this day.
There are also some software adjustments including the ability to save settings for multiple people which makes it a useful reader for the whole family and besides that it all feels, as I said before, very familiar.
The fact that I cannot write much about the new Paperwhite is a compliment. It has always been my preferred reader of choice, even above real books, and the latest version is a subtle improvement that keeps it high up in my list of products that are worth every penny. I only bought this because my current Paperwhite was damaged in a fall and it had served me perfectly for many years and many many books. I fully expect this new Paperwhite to be just as good and truth be told I don’t really want it to change much.