Is Buying a Kindle Worth It? 4 Reasons to Buy One

Why it's the ideal gadget for book lovers

Is buying a Kindle worth it? In most cases, yes. A Kindle means you can travel with as many books as you want without worrying about their weight.

This guide will help you determine if you should buy a Kindle based on your budget, how often you read, and any other needs you may have.

Who Should Get a Kindle

A Kindle is an excellent addition for many users. Here's why you should buy one:

  • You love reading and want to expand your horizons
  • You want extra features like being able to highlight passages or look up definitions
  • You have additional mobility needs and want to use something lighter than a book
  • You love buying cheap books

Who Shouldn't Get a Kindle

Not everyone needs a Kindle. Here's why not:

  • You don't read many books or magazines
  • You already use the Kindle app and don't feel the need for a dedicated device

Why You Should Buy a Kindle

Many of us enjoy reading, and using a Kindle can improve that experience immensely. Even though its initial cost is higher, a Kindle can offer several benefits more valuable than simply buying physical books. Here's a look at the key advantages.

You Love Reading

If you love reading, you almost certainly have an ever-growing collection of books. Owning a Kindle means you don't have to worry about having physical space to store them all. Instead, you can keep thousands of books on your Kindle and easily be able to take them wherever you go, instead of having to prioritize the most important ones. Such flexibility is beneficial, especially if you regularly travel.

You Like Cheap Books

While not all Kindle books are particularly cheap to buy, there are some excellent bargains out there. Free Kindle books are available, and there are often significant discounts on books each day. Owning a Kindle means you can buy many books for far less than if you were dependent on a store. You also get those books instantly rather than needing to wait for delivery.

You Want Extra Features

A Kindle doesn't just offer a simple way to read; it also has other features. It can translate sections of writing, provide definitions for words via its built-in dictionary, and even access Wikipedia. Users can also highlight and add notes to keep track of important passages. It's also possible to see what friends are reading (and you can share passages with them too).

You Have Additional Mobility Needs

Holding a book can be heavy if you have limitations with your upper limbs. A Kindle is much lighter to hold or carry than a regular book, making it very convenient for many people. Being able to store multiple books at once is also a huge help when trying to travel light, plus it means you don't have to consider walking to a different room to find the book you wish to read. The Kindle also offers a bright screen and options for enlarging the text, helping anyone with additional eyesight needs.

A woman looking at her Kindle while sitting on steps.

westend61 / Getty Images

When You Shouldn't Buy a Kindle

While a Kindle is a great gadget to buy for many people, it's not essential. There are times when you don't need one. 

You Don't Read Much

It's an obvious one, but you don't need a Kindle if you don't read much. Unlike other tablets, a Kindle is exclusively for reading books and magazines, although you can also use it to listen to audiobooks. If none of that appeals, buying a Kindle is a waste of money. Its key focus is reading—whether books, magazines, or files you transfer to it—and there's nothing else you can do with a Kindle. 

You're Happy With the Kindle App

It's possible to use the Kindle app on your smartphone or tablet, so you get many of the benefits of a Kindle without needing extra hardware. The Kindle app isn't always as intuitive as the Kindle itself, and the screen is dependent on the quality of your smartphone or tablet, but it's a free app. 

Kindle vs. Kindle Paperwhite

There are numerous Kindles available to buy. These include the Kindle, Kindle Paperwhite, Kindle Paperwhite Signature Edition, and Kindle Oasis. Most users will be happy with either the Kindle or Kindle Paperwhite. Here's a look at the similarities and differences between the two.

   Kindle  Kindle Paperwhite
Average price  $89.99  $139.99
Screen size  6-inches  6.8-inches
Expected battery life Up to 4 weeks Up to 10 weeks
Storage 8GB 8GB
Water resistance No IPX8

Both Kindle and Kindle Paperwhite allow you to read books and magazines digitally rather than needing to own physical copies. Both devices offer adjustable brightness and the ability to highlight passages and look up definitions. 

However, the Kindle Paperwhite offers a superior experience. It has a larger display with thinner borders and a sharper image. The Paperwhite is also faster than the Kindle, with 20% faster page turns.

Either the Kindle or Kindle Paperwhite will be sufficient for any keen reader. However, if you want a faster experience that can be used in the pool or bath and has a better display, you need the Kindle Paperwhite.

Do You Need a Kindle to Improve Your Reading Experience?

If you're an avid reader, a Kindle will improve your reading experience. It makes it easier to have a collection of books at your fingertips. Also, with the Kindle never getting heavier, any book you want to bring along won't weigh down your bag. You'll likely take it out with you more often than a regular book.

Regular discounts on books and the option to subscribe to Kindle Unlimited also mean you're likely to try different books and expand your horizons. However, you can still do this by heading to a bookstore or browsing online for physical copies. 

  • What is Kindle Unlimited?

    Kindle Unlimited is Amazon's subscription-based e-book platform. For a monthly fee, you can choose from a selection of millions of books, magazines, and audio books and read as many as you want as long as your subscription is active.

  • How do I download Kindle books?

    When you set up a Kindle, you'll tie it to your Amazon account. Once you've done that, you can buy an ebook from Amazon, and you'll have a "Send to Kindle" option when you check out. The procedure is similar when you check out a Kindle book from your library; once you lend it, you'll go directly to Amazon to send it to your Kindle. Alternatively, you can email documents, including some ebooks directly to your Kindle.

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