Amazon has confirmed that the Kindle Touch – released in the US last year – will finally come to the UK next month. The touchscreen E Ink ereader will be available from 27 April, and starts at £109.
As great as Amazon’s Kindle ereaders have been over the years, getting hold of one is often frustrating for UK folk. The Kindle Touch and Kindle Fire, a colour LCD tablet, were released in November 2011 in the US, and the former has only just been announced for the UK. The Wi-Fi only and 3G Kindle Touch models will be available from 27 April, and can be pre-ordered now from the Amazon website.
The Kindle Touch makes few innovations in the ereader scene. Its E Ink touchscreen offers multi-touch support, but then so do the Sony PRS-T1 and Booken Cybook Odyssey. Its screen is the same size and resolution as the non-touch Kindle, 6in and 800 x 600, and the book store works just as it did in the former Kindle models. However, Amazon’s ereaders don’t tend to be great because they offer stunning innovation, but because they get the basics just right.
The touchscreen model ditches the page turn buttons of the 2011 Kindle, in favour of what Amazon calls EasyReach. This turns pages with a single tap – rather than a swipe – making it easier to hold and use one-handed. The one other new feature is X-ray. This lets you look up more information on people and event featured in books bought from the Kindle bookstore.
This new model is a little bit heavier than the non-touch Kindle, 213g against 166g, but should be light enough to hold comfortably one-handed. It also brings back several features hacked off the 2011 model, though, such as MP3 support and the text-to-speech voice synthesiser.
The best bit is we’re not getting done over on price this time. At £109 for the Wi-Fi only version, the cost is in-line with the non-subsidised $139 of the US model. The 3G edition makes a return with the Touch edition too, at £169.