Kindle 2

Amazon offer 1984 redelivery or $30; Accused of “hypocrisy” by Authors Guild

Amazon offer 1984 redelivery or $30; Accused of “hypocrisy” by Authors Guild

The flip-side of having a well-publicised and successful ebook business is that you end up the prime target of criticism when anybody disagrees with how it's being run, and Amazon has certainly been subject to some controversy recently.  After the company's CEO, Jeff Bezos, apologized for the 1984 ebook debacle, Amazon have now offered any affected customer either their original copy - complete with annotations - redelivered, or $30 in the form of an e-gift certificate or check.  Meanwhile the Authors Guild has been redoubling its critique of the company, claiming "Amazon's hypocrisy is breathtaking".

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Amazon CEO Bezos apologizes for Orwell ebook fiasco

Amazon CEO Bezos apologizes for Orwell ebook fiasco

After Amazon deleted ebook copies of George Orwell novels from users Kindle ebook readers last week, in a PR nightmare that seemed almost too good to be true for headline writers, CEO Jeff Bezos has posted an apology to customers.  Describing the Amazon "solution" as "stupid, thoughtless, and painfully out of line with our principles", Bezos promised that the company would use the ferocious customer feedback to make better decisions in future.

Full statement after the cut

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Amazon will replace Kindle 2 screens for free

Amazon will replace Kindle 2 screens for free

As you've probably heard by now, Amazon has come under fire recently for the screens on the Kindle 2. Apparently, they've been cracking left and right and Amazon was requiring people to pay a $200 replacement fee to have them fixed.

But a $5 million class action lawsuit brought up yesterday against the company seems to have done the trick, as Amazon has just announced they'll be repairing Kindle 2 models for free. Well, replacing is more the right word.

The Amazon Kindle 2 currently costs $299, so a $200 replacement fee was rather outlandish, especially for what seems to be a design flaw--not carelessness by Kindle owners. But it looks like everything is solved now.

Amazon’s UK Kindle deal almost final? December launch & 3G/WiFi tipped

Amazon’s UK Kindle deal almost final? December launch & 3G/WiFi tipped

Amazon is reportedly close to setting a release date for the Kindle in the UK, with "advanced negotiations" underway with a carrier for providing the wireless connection via which the device downloads ebooks.  According to Mobile Today, Amazon have called upon Qualcomm to manage not only the manufacturing of the GSM Kindle, but to "securing connectivity" for the UK device.

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Kindle copy to launch in China by end of year

Kindle copy to launch in China by end of year

You have to admire Peking University's Founder Group: when asked about any connection between their ebook device, shown here, and Amazon's Kindle 2, they bravely told those at the Digital Publishing Fair in Tokyo that "it has nothing to do with the Kindle."  Unfortunately they also seem a little confused about their own hardware specifications; asked about the E Ink panel size, and they said it was "unclear".  Happily Tech-On!'s Takuya Otani had brought a ruler, and found it to be a Kindle-like 6-inches.

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Amazon Kindle 2 drops to $299

Amazon Kindle 2 drops to $299

Amazon have slashed $60 off the price of their Amazon Kindle 2 ebook reader, pulling the device to $299 for the first time.  The move is being seen as a response to a growing number of ebook reader rivals, though admittedly none have the same wireless distribution network in place that Amazon have organized.

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Kindle DRM confuses: unknown download limits apply

Kindle DRM confuses: unknown download limits apply

The plus side to Amazon's attempts to differentiate ebook hardware and content is being able to read content on more than one device.  However, when one arm of the company is pushing customers to buy more Kindle hardware, and the other has cautious publishers insisting on layers of DRM, confusion is bound to happen.  According to Gear Diary's Dan Cohen, that confusion is already upon us: he's spent his weekend and several long calls with Amazon customer care trying to figure out how many times he can download ebooks he's purchased, and being told different things by different employees.

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Kindle to get broader file support; Amazon ebook access to spread

Kindle to get broader file support; Amazon ebook access to spread

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has reconfirmed his intention to put the retailers ebook titles on more devices, together with opening up the Kindle ebook reader range to more formats.  The recently launched Kindle DX, which we reviewed last week, adds native PDF support; Bezos did not name specific file types, but it seems possible that future updates or new devices may be able to read other types of ebook file.

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Amazon Kindle DX Review

Amazon Kindle DX Review

Amazon's Kindle DX was announced back at the beginning of May, but it's taken until now for the first of the oversized ebook readers to reach buyers' hands.  The Kindle DX begins shipping this week, promising more E Ink real estate, more memory, and more file-type support on top of the Kindle 2's existing Whispernet wireless and other features.  Is bigger necessarily better?  SlashGear put on our reading glasses and set to finding out.

The differences between the Kindle 2 and the new Kindle DX are obvious: a 9.7-inch E Ink monochrome display dominates the front panel, offering around 2.5x the space of the smaller ebook reader and squashing the QWERTY keyboard into tic-tac tininess at the bottom.  Amazon has obviously worked hard to minimize the screen's impact on the overall chassis, with mixed results.  It's a scant 0.02-inches thicker than the Kindle 2, at 0.38-inches, with a metal back-plate lending stiffness, but the left-side page controls have been dropped.

Make sure to click through for the full review, photo gallery and unboxing/walkthrough video of the Amazon Kindle DX.

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