Amazon announced its 7th generation Kindle in September. Now, the reviews on the Kindle Voyage -- billed as the company’s most advanced e-reader ever -- are coming in.
Kindle Voyage features an all-new design, complete with a flush glass scratch-resistant front and a magnesium back. It’s 7.6 mm thin and weighs less than 6.4 ounces. The Voyage carries a new Paperwhite display, with the highest-ever resolution, contrast and brightness of any Kindle to hit the market yet. There are 300 pixels per inch.
The price is $199. And that seems to be the sticking point with some of the reviewers. Roger Entner, a principal analyst at Recon Analytics, told us the Voyage is better than the Kindle Paperwhite but comes at a premium price.
“This is an interesting departure from their traditional strategy, which was to make the hardware affordable,” Entner said. “We saw with the Amazon Fire Phone that the premium route is not really working for them. So we’ll see if the new Kindle will actually be a hit.”
Good Device, Wrong Price?
Kindle Voyage does come equipped with PagePress, a new way to turn pages. Just rest your thumb on the bezel and turn the page by lightly pressing. Kindle Voyage is also available with free 3G. Amazon pays for the 3G connection. Still, Entner is not convinced.
“I have the Paperwhite and I absolutely love that device and it was a huge improvement over the traditional one and the Voyage is a nice update,” Entner said. “If it was an $80 or a $100 device you would see people upgrade, but at $200 it’s a very nice premium gift for people who don’t have a Paperwhite. It looks like the upgrades are becoming smaller and the price differential is becoming larger. It’s great that Amazon improved the Kindle but I think they got the pricing wrong.”
New York Times reviewer Farhad Manjoo isn’t bothered by the price. He called the Kindle Voyage a high-end e-reader that beats hardcovers. Still, he said the “only real reason to choose the Voyage over the other Kindles -- the Paperwhite, which goes for $119, and the entry-level reader, which is $69 but doesn’t have a light -- is its high-contrast display.”
For Manjoo, the Voyage’s display justifies the price. If you read often, he said, you’ll want a high-quality screen, and this is one you’ll appreciate every single time you read.
Hayley Tsukayama at the Washington Post disagreed. She admitted the Kindle Voyage is the best e-reader the company has made to date. But, the Voyage also comes with a big problem: its price, she added. “The reader is on the expensive side -- $200, as compared to $119 for the backlit Kindle Paperwhite. That brings it way up over the ‘impulse buy’ line, even for avid readers. That puts it in the same category as the lowest-end tablets,” she said.
Posted: 2014-11-04 @ 9:20am PT
Are you kidding? People are paying hundreds, continuously, for games consoles and the ever-upgraded games to play on them - games! This is a device which makes reading easy anywhere: stranded on journeys, waiting for things to happen or people to arrive, during white nights. And the books come far, far cheaper than they've been since Gutenberg - and often free.
Don't tell Amazon but I'd pay far, far more than the price of the Voyage (and yes, I'm upgrading from an earlier-version Kindle)...
Posted: 2014-11-02 @ 10:26am PT
I think the price is well worth it. For instance, the Voyage comes with 300ppi and it's 39% brighter. My favorite is definitely the Voyage right now because it's definitely setting the standard.
Posted: 2014-10-22 @ 12:57am PT
I believe for the people who really loves to read using Kindle, price is not a bit of a problem. I am an author and use my Kindle for organizing my notes with Clippings.io. Was wondering if anyone had any other good site recommendations?
Posted: 2014-10-21 @ 5:31am PT
As an avid reader and e-reader afficianado, I have no problem with this price point for what is obviously not an entry-level device. Heck, the Paperwhite, without "Special Offers" (aka ads) & with 3G, is $209. The premium on the Voyage is $80. Worth it for the better display & features.
Posted: 2014-10-21 @ 4:19am PT
I want it!
Posted: 2014-10-21 @ 3:54am PT
Amazon doesn't want people to upgrade their Kindle (that they sold for a loss) to a new device selling for a loss. The Voyage looks to be the best e-reader ever. A premium device is good for the market, and if you don't like the price, or need the features, they still have the $70 model.
Posted: 2014-10-21 @ 3:42am PT
It's not too expensive. It's worth what people are willing to pay. They are currently on pre-order back-order and have been for weeks. I believe some are reporting a two month wait.
Allan R. Wallace:
Posted: 2014-10-21 @ 3:39am PT
If you read a book a day it is likely a good value. If you read one book a month, paper books are a more enduring format even though more expensive.
Posted: 2014-10-21 @ 3:37am PT
I would never buy a Kindle because Amazon doesn't support epubs. Deal-breaker.
Posted: 2014-10-21 @ 3:33am PT
I haven't seen an e-reader yet that beats a hardcover book. No batteries, no upgrades, no price gouging on ebooks, no BS.
I'll keep my books, Amazon can keep it's gadget.
Posted: 2014-10-21 @ 2:59am PT
I have the $69 Kindle & I never buy books. Get all my reads from my library.
Posted: 2014-10-21 @ 2:56am PT
Yeah, for that price, they should at least have upped the RAM a bit, which I think would help with things like functionality of the experimental browser and reading PDFs.
Definitely not buying at that price.
Posted: 2014-10-21 @ 1:21am PT
I have Paperwhite 3G and it costs... the same $200. The author of the article confuses wi fi Paperwhite with 3G paperwhite. As such, the article is nonsensical. A good article would compare the issues in Paperwhite (that do exist) and how they are solved in Voyage, but for this you need an experienced paperwhite user, and the author of the article is obviously not one of them.
Posted: 2014-10-21 @ 12:26am PT
I think it should be half the price. I've seen multiple other Kindles break or malfunction after about a year of regular use by teachers and students. Maybe the Voyage will prove to be sturdier. But ultimately, if it's built to be disposable after a year of use, the price shouldn't be so high.
Posted: 2014-10-21 @ 12:23am PT
It's much too expensive, given that you have to keep buying e-books to use it. I would think Amazon would want to just give it away as a way to make more money selling e-books.