The Old Kindle Gets a “Refresh”

At lunch today I commented to my wife that I was disappointed that when Amazon released the new Kindle they didn’t at least give us a firmware update for TOK (The Original Kindle.)  Well, it turns out I whined too soon!  I saw this today on the Amazon’s Kindle Forum site:

A new software update for Kindle has rolled out. This update (version 1.2) adds the following features:

– Zoom any image in Kindle books or periodicals by selecting the image using the scroll wheel.
– Individual items and groups of items can be deleted directly from the Home screen. Simply scroll to the item you wish to delete and push the backspace key.
– Improved character and font support including Greek characters and monospace fonts.

It turns out there are a few other hidden feature changes.

At this point the most obvious is the screen refresh.  Many of you know that TOK has a refresh cycle that some considered slow, and would flash a “reverse image” before showing the next page.  That was changed in TNK (The New Kindle) and the 2.0 Kindle reportedly has a 20% faster screen refresh rate.  Well, apparently this firmware update does the same.

I will continue using the update, and will report what else I find–so stay tuned!


3 thoughts on “The Old Kindle Gets a “Refresh”

  1. Saw TNK featured on a couple of morning news shows today.



    Only $9 per download!



    – How much?
    – How many titles are “Kindle Ready?”
    – Where can “Kindle Ready” titles be sourced from?
    – Battery life?
    – Is Kindle Ready format compatible with anything else . . . pdf? docx?

    And now the kicker:

    Can I read it in the bright sun of Cabo, poolside, while drinking Pina Coladas?

    Inquiring minds are beginning to seek information . . . !


  2. Steve:

    I am glad you asking these questions. The DRM protected books for the Kindle are (as of now) only available through Amazon, but there are number of other sources for “open license” or “public domain” books. There are a few books that I cannot find yet for the Kindle, but I am hopeful that those publishers will soon see the light.

    As for the battery life–DAYS of regular use. Easily. And if you turn on the wireless access to the (freely provided) Sprint data network, you can double that.

    You can send PDF and Word documents to the Kindle (and a few other formats as well.)

    As for reading outside–that’s where the eInk technology really “shines” (pun intended.) It is not backlit so it doesn’t strain the eyes as reading a screen does, and when you are outside it actually is EASIER to read.

    On top of all that, I (as I have written previously) love the fact that highlighting and notetaking can not only be done in the document, but that I can download the texts as txt files and embed in research/powerpoints, emails, etc.. It’s a true researcher’s GOD send!

    I for one sing the praises of the Kindle, and highly recommend them to anyone–and respectfully suggest if you order one, please do so from the Amazon link in the right column of my blog. And just so you know, I don’t list anything there I haven’t tried, loved, and hopefully own myself already.

  3. Jeeze, Steve, tell me how you *really* feel!

    As you knwo, I am hardly an “early adopter” of any technology.

    I have been watching the Kindle concept from a distance for a while. I am an avid (and voracious!) reader of popular prose and generally tote 3-5 paperbacks with me everywhere I go. The laptop is too bulky . . . screen too dim, etc. etc. etc.

    I *really* like the idea of being able to use 3G to download titles pretty much at will.

    So much better than schlepping over to the bookstore for another title as soon as I finish the current brain candy . . .

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