EARLIER THIS YEAR, I caught myself complaining to a colleague that I have not read enough books. I read more than ever, but I prefer largely replaced the books with a magazine, news stories, and tweets. (Most of the tweets, if I’m honest.) I read in fits and starts: five minutes in line at Safeway, 20 minutes on the train, in 15 minutes when I am at the beginning at the restaurant. This, I whined to my poor colleague, was simply not conducive to reading books.
Then, I read a story from our friends at the GQ “How to Read a Damn Book Every Week.” The room is belief in its simplicity. He said—and I paraphrase here—that the key to reading more books is to stop being so precious about it, you idiot. Do it for five minutes, two minutes, or 30 minutes if you’re lucky. You will be amazed to see how much you read. Since then, I’ve tried to follow the advice of the heart.
Amazon update Kindle Oasis, the company’s latest e-reader, seems to have been designed for exactly the kind of reading frenzy, and I am trying to do. It has a larger battery than the previous model, so you’re never stuck without reading material. It is impermeable to water, so that you can read in the shower. (Try it! It’s fun.) If you pay an additional amount of $100 to $249 price, you get always-on the LTE coverage, so that you can find a new book from anywhere. Oasis integrates with Audible, Amazon’s audio book service, allowing you to switch between reading and listening a book with a single tap. It has a larger screen, lots of font options, a more even backlight—you’re kind of out of excuses not to read it.
After a couple of weeks with the Oasis, in fact, I finished a few books. All the features of the device that impresses me: It is the smoothest, the fastest, the most intelligent e-book reader Amazon ever made. For most people, it is probably not worth the cost—especially when Amazon already makes a killer reader, the Paperwhite, for about half the price. Same for me, the Oasis comes with a big negative point, which, in some ways, undoes her wonder where-and when-however ambience: It is just too big.
Virtually all of the Kindle has never had a 6-inch screen. Amazon has landed on size early on, and seemed to consider it as the perfect balance of screen size and gadget size: It is large enough that you are not turning pages every eighth word, small enough to slip into your back pocket. One can hold with one hand or two, and never tire of it anyway.
The new Oasis features a 7-inch screen, which is a big difference than it seems. The Kindle is still light, still thin, still a whole lot smaller than a hardcover book, but somehow I can’t figure out how to hold this new thing. The slick back offers without obligation to purchase, so I can’t catch it by its abdomen and take. If I palm her bottom, I can’t quite reach the page turn buttons, and the camera tends to tip out of my hands. Maybe if the buttons were not stuck in the centre of a wide-grip, they would be easier to achieve, but then you would not be able to return around in your hands, so that it wouldn’t work. As is, I mostly read in conjunction with the two hands, one holding the Oasis and the one flipping through the pages.
The new Oasis also does not fit in the back pocket of my Levi’s 511s, the former Elicits the fact. It does not fit in my jacket. Compared to the average of your book, of course, it’s still a little contraption. But that extra inch of screen size (and all the available battery space that came with it) led me to leave the Oasis at the house when I, otherwise, would have brought with me, just in case. If Amazon’s ultimate goal is to Ignite that feel like paper, flexible in form, infinite in their battery, evident in their interface, then make the device more difficult to carry, feels like a step back.
The size is a shame, too, because the rest of the Oasis is almost perfect. The Audible alarm for the integration to work perfectly: You download books over Wi-Fi until you fill the 8 gb of internal storage, and then switch between reading and listening with a simple touch of a button. There is no speaker or headphone, so that you will have to connect a headset or a Bluetooth speaker, but the connectivity firm, and the process only took a few seconds. I like to be able to read it in the morning, to listen to on my walk to the train, and go right to playing, without missing a beat. This is the best case for the model LTE, also, and always-on connectivity means that you’re always in sync with the Kindle app and your Alexa loudspeaker. I am totally out of excuses not to read it.
Even with a lot of listening and Bluetoothing and LTE-shopping, I can’t kill this battery. Amazon says that it lasts “weeks”, which is also what he said about all the other Kindle, which is totally useless measurement. Here’s what I know: last year Oasis really needs its coverage, which included enough battery power to keep the device. It’s just fine all by itself.