Kindle or Kindle Paperwhite? How to choose wisely?

Author: Nicolas | Last update:

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Kindle vs Kindle Paperwhite comparison

The two cheapest e-readers in the Kindle range both offer very good reading experiences. Yet, there are some notable differences between these two e-readers. So, should you buy a Kindle e-reader or a Kindle Paperwhite e-reader?

On the USA, Amazon engineers chose to put a light and a good screen in the entry-level Kindle and a bigger screen in the latest Kindle Paperwhite.

That's pretty good news, since both of these e-readers become the cheapest models on the market with these features (which we'll see in the following).

The problem is that despite its large screen, the Kindle Paperwhite now costs about $40 more than the basic Kindle.

So we'll see why there is such a price difference between the two e-readers.

Technical specifications of the two readers

eReader : Kindle Paperwhite vs Kindle
Kindle PaperwhiteKindle
Imagekindle paperwhite 6.8 inch screenkindle e-reader 2022
Screen size6.8"6"
Resolution1680 x 1264 pixels1448 x 1072 pixels
ColorNoNo
BacklightYesYes
WaterproofYesNo
Storage8 - 32 GB16 GB
Pen / StylusNoNo
SD cardNoNo
Ebook formatsKindle Format 8 (AZW3), Kindle (AZW), TXT, PDF, EPUB (converted), MOBI, PRC; HTML, DOC, DOCX, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMPKindle Format 8 (AZW3), Kindle (AZW), TXT, PDF, EPUB, MOBI, PRC; HTML, DOC, DOCX, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP
Blue light filterYesNo
OtherBlack or Blue color
ReviewBest value for the money Kindle eReader⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Very good ereader at a good price ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Link (where to buy?)Amazon.comAmazon.com

First of all, the readers do not have the same screen, nor the same lighting.

But, the only thing common to both screens is the touch system.

Indeed, the Kindle reader offers a simple lighting while the Kindle Paperwhite has a more advanced lighting with more LEDs. A difference that will invariably be felt on the quality and power of the lighting.

Also the screens are different:

  • Kindle e-reader: 6-inch screen 1448 x 1072 pixels as resolution with lighting
  • Kindle Paperwhite: 6.8 inch screen 1648 x 1236 pixels resolution with lighting and blue light filter

So we have two different screens but equally accurate one as the other.

The Paperwhite has the advantage of having a better designed lighting system with a tool to adjust the color temperature (blue light filter). This reader will be more comfortable than its little sister.

Kindle Paperwhite: little extras that can make a difference

The differences are not only in the screen.

Since the Kindle is less expensive, many compromises have been made.

First of all, the single Kindle has only 16 GB of storage for ebooks.

That's strangely less for the basic Kindle Paperwhite, which offers 8GB of storage (but paid options allow for more like the Paperwhite Signature edition with its 32GB and wireless charging).

But, more than storage, it's really the screen size and definition that makes the difference and tips the scales in favor of the new Kindle Paperwhite.

Kindle Paperwhite e-reader with 6.8 inches screen

Second, the Kindle Paperwhite is waterproof (IPX8 certification). This feature may seem a bit gimmicky, but it means that the e-reader will withstand better in wet environments like without a bathroom where water value and wet splashes are common.

A waterproof e-reader also means you can put it next to a cup of coffee without worrying too much or display a recipe next to the sink... It's also interesting to clean the e-reader from time to time.

Finally, the Kindle Paperwhite has a much longer battery life. According to Amazon, the Paperwhite's battery life is 50% longer than the basic Kindle.

Note that the Paperwhite offers a much faster charging system via USB-C.

Which Kindle to choose?

Kindle Paperwhite

kindle paperwhite 6.8 inch screen

6.8" e-reader - 1680 x 1264 pixels e ink screen - Ebook formats supported: Kindle Format 8 (AZW3), Kindle (AZW), TXT, PDF, EPUB (converted), MOBI, PRC; HTML, DOC, DOCX, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP

Best value for the money Kindle eReader⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

These two e-readers are not the only ones sold by Amazon and you can check the Kindle e-reader guide.

However, they are very interesting because they are affordable.

While the Kindle Paperwhite has a lot of competition from other brands (Pocketbook, Kobo), the Kindle basic is the most affordable in its class, which makes it an attractive machine.

But, as you've seen, it is nonetheless very limited compared to a reader like the Kindle Paperwhite, which has much more comprehensive features.

The Paperwhite is also the cheapest reading machine of the moment in the category of reading machines with a screen size greater than 6 inches.

Here is a summary table of the characteristics of the two e-readers:

eReader : Kindle Paperwhite vs Kindle
Kindle PaperwhiteKindle
Imagekindle paperwhite 6.8 inch screenkindle e-reader 2022
Screen size6.8"6"
Resolution1680 x 1264 pixels1448 x 1072 pixels
ColorNoNo
BacklightYesYes
WaterproofYesNo
Storage8 - 32 GB16 GB
Pen / StylusNoNo
SD cardNoNo
Ebook formatsKindle Format 8 (AZW3), Kindle (AZW), TXT, PDF, EPUB (converted), MOBI, PRC; HTML, DOC, DOCX, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMPKindle Format 8 (AZW3), Kindle (AZW), TXT, PDF, EPUB, MOBI, PRC; HTML, DOC, DOCX, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP
Blue light filterYesNo
OtherBlack or Blue color
ReviewBest value for the money Kindle eReader⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Very good ereader at a good price ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Link (where to buy?)Amazon.comAmazon.com

My recommendation is this: if you want an all-terrain e-reader that you'll carry everywhere and with good battery life, head for Amazon's Kindle Paperwhite e-reader.

If you're more likely to read at home in a chair or before bed and have less money then the simple Kindle on Amazon will do the trick.

This post may contain affiliate links, which means that I may receive a commission if you make a purchase using these links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Author

nicolas lorenzon

Recognizing the need for an informed and reliable source for eReader-related content, Nicolas created MyEreader.net, where he currently serves as the lead writer. His well-crafted articles cover a wide range of topics, including eReader reviews, comparisons between various devices, tips for optimizing reading experiences, and discussions on the future of digital reading. Read more here

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