Still surprisingly ugly.
Last week Sony may have launched an update to its eBook reader just weeks after its predecessor became available in the UK, but Amazon now looks set to go one better with version two of the Kindle before v1.0 even hits international release.
According to BGR, what you see here is in fact the Kindle 2 – helpfully snapped alongside its forebear – but unlike the Sony PRS-700 it doesn’t offer the same complete overhaul.
Main changes are the obvious shift to a more rounded, less corner-snapped look and surprisingly an increase in length resulting in a larger device. The scroll wheel has also gone to be replaced by a more traditional joystick – unsure about this switch – while the SD card slot has been sacrificed in favour of far larger native memory (according to the leak: 1403MB to be exact). This is good for most, but may disappoint those who like to carry entire libraries around with them.
In one indisputable benefit however Amazon’s proprietary charger has been dumped for the ubiquitous miniUSB. Elsewhere the rear of the Kindle 2 gets a makeover with what looks to be a pair of stereo speakers, though the screen itself is reportedly identical to v1.0 (the wait for colour will go on for a while yet).
No indications were given as to the availability of the Kindle 2, though when something similar happened with the Kindle 1 Amazon didn’t come clean for almost two months. That said, I suspect this will be the device to be released globally with the Kindle 1 consigned to US test toy.
Could it coincide with Amazon MP3 launching in the UK this month? Perhaps a little optimistic, but let’s hope so…