Ebook readers

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Kindle Keyboard Review

Kindle Keyboard

Reviewer: Stephen Qualtrough
Developer: Amazon
Ranked: 10th
Overall rating:
Price: Free

Review summary

Good points

 Huge library of books

 A months’ worth of battery life

 Keyboard for notes

 Wi-Fi enabled

Bad points

 Not good with pictures

 Easily scratched backing

 Slow book turns

Our verdict

With Kindle bringing out a new range of Kindle e-readers, this one has went down in price, but is still a very good choice for a solid reader that only want to read – if you want features like colour, 3G, video and web browsing, look elsewhere.

Full review

The Kindle impressed a lot of people when it first came out, because it was cheap and offered a good amount of books - it also comes with an incredible amount of battery life, so you would never think about charging your Kindle every night, or even every fortnight.


There are good points and bad points about the Kindle Keyboard – the good points are it is a slim design and it is quite small, when you’re reading the Kindle doesn’t feel heavy or unbalanced.

The screen is very good too, it bright and the text are crisp – we doubt you’ll be squinting to read the words.

The problems are that the Kindle Keyboard is made with lacklustre materials, cheap plastic can easily be scratched and we have already found marks on the back. If the Kindle is dropped, you will also find that the screen is capable of cracking, even though it’s plastic.

Amazon seem to have already noticed this design flaw, so if you tell them you dropped it, they immediately send you a new one out.

Ease of use

It is pretty easy to get around the Kindle Keyboard, you have keyboard options if you want to open your menu, go back or open. You can reach the store within two clicks and be on your favourite book within four.

If you download a lot of books, it may be a bit of a hassle to find the one you want to read, because the Kindle has a title separation and you have to find the right title. We find the iPad and Nook Color have better ways of setting out their book stores.

Reading a book is simple and the buttons on the side to switch-pages are easy to touch and don’t disturb your flow. You may find you have to wait a couple of seconds for the page to load up though, as the Kindle Keyboard is very slow at loading speeds.


We aren’t sure if the Amazon or the Barnes & Noble book store is bigger, but both are substantial for any reader, there are plenty of books on the Kindle store and if you cannot find your favourite book, we’ll be shocked.

There is magazines, blogs and articles that you can also buy, although we would defy you to do so, given the prices of these choices. You’re better off just going out and buying the magazine, or reading the blog/article for free on the web, if you really want to.


This Keyboard edition was brought out before 3G became a real-deal on e-readers, and Kindle only fitted it with Wi-Fi, so you can easily get on the book store and browse.

The Wi-Fi works fine and is easy enough to set up, once you have done this, you never need to set it up again, unless you need to set-up a new connection.


This is one of the main positives of the Kindle Keyboard, because it has a minimal amount of features and it’s one major feature is books, the battery life is much larger than most of the new, colour, 3G and web-browsing alternatives.

While we couldn’t put an exact figure on it, if you read about an hour every day, you’ll probably get about a months’ worth of reading done before you even need to think of charging the Kindle again.


The Kindle Keyboard has 3.3GB’s of internal storage and doesn’t have a solution if you want to get more – so for the major readers, this may not be such a good gambit.

Ofcourse, 3.3GB’s will still give you around 3,500 books to store on the Kindle and then you can of course erase some of the ones you don’t want or store them on your computer. So, realistically, nobody needs more than 3.3GB’s.


The keyboard does give you an easier time writing in searches and setting notes, but it isn’t brilliant, the keys feel ancient and we believe for a Kindle in a new e-reader market, they should have done more to make the keyboard edition not feel like an old accessory.

The Keyboard allows native PDF support, but we tried to put a PDF of the Kindle Keyboard and found it was pretty ugly, without colour and with a lack of quality images, PDF’s look degraded.

The Keyboard edition works with audio books, if your eyes ever get tired. Audio works pretty well, although it can be damaged pretty easily if you drop your Kindle.


The Kindle Keyboard is an impressive e-reader, but it doesn’t have many features to appeal for people looking for a little bit more than just a good e-reader. The battery life is good and you can read text without a problem, but no 3G, colour or web browsing features make it lacklustre against today opponents and today Kindles.

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