During a massive smart product rollout on Wednesday, Amazon announced a big-screen E Ink device that’s equally at home with documents and books.
A 9.7-inch E Ink reader released in 2009 was the Amazon Kindle DX (opens in new tab). The Kindle Scribe wasn’t as sleek, light, or bright as the 300ppi backlit Kindle. There was no touch screen, only a keyboard and navigation buttons. Kindle DX was considered to be the future of Amazon’s E Ink book business, especially for textbooks.
Students would no longer have to struggle under the weight of huge and expensive textbooks in overstuffed backpacks due to the device’s large screen and ability to hold thousands of books. Typical college and school textbooks through Amazon’s online bookstore cost half as much as the Kindle DX.
Kindle DX died quickly and unremarkably after a single update in 2010. The majority of Kindle users read novels on their e-readers while on vacation, so I believe they have no interest or need for a tablet-sized device with a black and white screen that can’t even play video.
Apple’s iPad released in 2010 sealed the fate of the DX
That would make the new Kindle Scribe a similar misfire. The Kindle Scribe, however, is much more technically advanced than the DX, despite the economic similarities.
The Kindle Scribe’s stylus, included in the $339 price, is Amazon’s biggest innovation. In the first place, I am pleased to see that Amazon is not following the DX pricing model of going expensive or going home. Secondly, bundling a stylus is brilliant, since it’s probably more intelligent than a simple piece of plastic. In addition to obvious design differences, it makes the Kindle Scribe quite different from Amazon’s last attempt at a big-screen E Ink tablet.