The budget Kindle just got the feature it’s always needed

Amazon has just announced the “all-new” Kindle 2019, the latest version of its most affordable e-reader, which now features adjustable backlighting − the feature we’ve all been holding out for.

Its addition means the new Kindle can be used in more places and situations than ever before − in complete darkness and very bright sunshine.

Read more: Best e-reader

“Customers consistently tell us how much they appreciate having a front light on Kindle devices so they can read in any environment − even in bed at night,” said Eric Saarnio, Amazon’s head of devices for Europe.

We loved the previous version of the Kindle, awarding it 4.5/5 in our review. However, our biggest criticism was the lack of backlighting.

kindle 2019

“The biggest omission is the lack of a backlight. This is a completely unlit e-paper display that’s just as impossible to read in the dark as a typical book. If you like to read at night, the Kindle Paperwhite is the much better option,” our review reads. “But we’re not at a stage yet where Amazon can offer a backlit Kindle for this price.”

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That, fortunately, has now changed, though the feature bumps up the Kindle’s price by a tenner, taking it from £59.99 to £69.99.

Amazon hasn’t said anything specific about how big an impact on battery life the backlight will have, but the company says the Kindle 2019 will still last “weeks” off a single charge.

kindle 2019

Elsewhere, the Kindle’s design has been tweaked, but the changes are minimal. The Kindle logo below the screen is now highlighted in white (on the black model, and grey on the white model), and the e-reader’s corners are slightly rounder than they were before.

Otherwise it’s largely the same old story. Like its predecessor, the Kindle 2019 features a touch-sensitive 6-inch, 167ppi e-Ink display.

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Amazon has also announced a new reading feature, which will make its way to the Kindle 2019, Kindle Paperwhite Gen 6 (released in 2013), and newer devices − such as the Kindle Oasis − as a free, over-the-air update “in the coming months”.

The Kindle 2019 is available in black and white colour schemes, and costs £69.99. It’s available for pre-order right now from Amazon and select retailers, including Argos, Dixons, John Lewis & Partners, littlewoods.com and very.co.uk, and will begin shipping to buyers on April 10.

Is backlighting the Kindle feature you’ve been holding out for? Do you think the extra £10 is worth it? Let us know on Twitter @TrustedReviews.