While I don't necessarily need to buy a new Kindle this year – I already have the Amazon Kindle Scribe – the 30% discount on the current Kindle Paperwhite (2021) is well worth considering if you're after a new ereader. The good news is that this model also ships to New Zealand with no extra delivery charges than what's displayed.
There's 16GB of storage on board this version of the Paperwhite, which means you can potentially fill it up with thousands of ebooks (hundreds if it was just 8GB of storage). There's Bluetooth connectivity here as well, so you can also use an existing Kindle Unlimited or Audible subscription to listen to audiobooks via a set of wireless headphones.
If you've never tried Kindle Unlimited or Audible, there's the opportunity to snag three months of free trial for both services. You just have to be an existing Prime member for that. If you aren't, you can sign up now for a Prime subscription – get yourself a 30-day free trial for that as well – then go on to sign up for either Kindle Unlimited or Audible (or both if you wish).
The 8GB version of the Kindle Paperwhite has dropped as low as AU$167 before, but we've not seen the 16GB at the current price of AU$187 apiece. That makes this model very worth your hard-earned cash if you're in need of a new ereader.
That said, for a little extra money (AU$209), you can get the Kindle Paperwhite Signature Edition at 30% off, which will score you 32GB of internal storage and wireless charging too.
So why am I recommending the Kindle Paperwhite over any other model?
There's real value for money here – 16GB of storage really is very generous indeed. To put that discounted AU$187 into perspective, the base Amazon Kindle (2022) with 16GB of storage retails for AU$179 at full price (currently down to AU$139), but has a lot of other important features missing.
With the Paperwhite, you're getting a much bigger screen – it's got a 6.8-inch E Ink display (6 inches in the older Paperwhites and base Kindle) that's crisp and clear. Then there's the ability to listen to audiobooks as I've already mentioned.
There's a bigger battery than any other older Paperwhite model before it, so you can go weeks before needing to top up, making it perfect for taking along on a holiday (even a long one). Charging it up is also relatively quicker when plugged into a wall socket adapter as it's a USB-C port – it was the first Kindle to get this now-standard charging port, by the way.
The Paperwhite will also let you adjust the hue or temperature of the light, so it can be warmer for evening/nighttime reading to reduce the effects of blue light on sleep. The base Kindle doesn't feature this. The base Kindle is also not waterproof, which the Paperwhite is with IPX8 certification – that means you can drop into a pool and not worry about damage; just be sure to fish out soon and keep it away from sea.
So while the base Kindle is cheaper, it doesn't really offer as much.
The one and only factor that would make me hesitate buying the Paperwhite would be the lack of page-turn buttons. I love the fact that there are some ereaders out there that let me use them single-handed – the physical buttons are neatly placed just where my thumb would rest. For that, ladies and gentlemen, I'd recommend the Kindle Oasis at its current 30% discount – down to just AU$299.
Amazon Kindle Oasis (8GB) |
AU$429 AU$299 on Amazon (save AU$130)
The Kindle Oasis pioneered the asymmetric design that the competition has latched onto, offering a gorgeous metal chassis and physical page-turn buttons that make single-hand use easy. It a good-looking ereader that the Kindle Scribe is now emulating. And a 30% discount on what might be an ageing ereader is well worth it.
Compared to the Paperwhite, the Oasis is a little older (launched in 2019) and the screen may now feel a little sluggish in comparison. But that's only if you're comparing side by side. It's still worth it in my humble opinion. Other than good looks and physical page-turn buttons, the Oasis is also waterproof and boasts a 7-inch E Ink screen (just marginally bigger than the current Paperwhite). And the option to adjust light hue/temperature is also on board.
I did mention the Kindle Scribe that I'm currently using. That, too, is discounted but by only 20%, and is still a very premium model. If you do think you will use it to its full capabilities – aka note taking and doodling – then it might be worth considering at AU$439 for the 16GB Scribe. There's a 10.2-inch absolutely gorgeous screen here, and it ships with the Basic Pen.
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Sharmishta is TechRadar's APAC Managing Editor and loves all things photography, something she discovered while chasing monkeys in the wilds of India (she studied to be a primatologist but has since left monkey business behind). While she's happiest with a camera in her hand, she's also an avid reader and has become a passionate proponent of ereaders, having appeared on Singaporean radio to talk about the convenience of these underrated devices. When she's not testing camera kits or the latest in e-paper tablets, she's discovering the joys and foibles of smart home gizmos. She's also the Australian Managing Editor of Digital Camera World and, if that wasn't enough, she contributes to T3 and Tom's Guide, while also working on two of Future's photography print magazines Down Under.