Kindle Paperwhite adds higher resolution, Bookerly font and new layout engine

Paperwhite300ppi
The new 300ppi Kindle Paperwhite displaying the Bookerly font

The new Kindle Paperwhite looks like a bit of a bargain with higher resolution and including Amazon’s new ‘typesetting’ engine and the new Bookerly font for just $119.

The Paperwhite is the best-selling Kindle and the previous model featured 212ppi resolution, but it now matches the Kindle Voyage for resolution at 300ppi and is $100 cheaper as the Voyage is still retailing on Amazon at $219.

In fact, the Paperwhite has stolen a march on the Voyage as Bookerly has been added to the font choice together with the new typesetting engine claimed to improve hyphenation and spacing, while irked Voyage owners (myself among them) are still waiting for a software update.

The new font and layout engine were rolled out on newer Kindle tablets recently but it doesn’t look like people with older Kindle Fires will be getting the upgrade. Amazon says the new font, etc, will be extended to some other devices in a free, over-the-air software update later this year.

One interesting fact in the Amazon press release about the new Paperwhite reveals that only around a half of Kindle owners use a font that is bigger than the default setting.

You can customize the font size on a Kindle and Amazon says ‘over half’ of Kindle customers take advantage of this feature and use a font size larger than the default. It adds that the new Paperwhite automatically adapts when a reader chooses the biggest font sizes, customizing the margins, columns, indents, nested lists, borders, and drop caps to keep the page easy to read.

However, another interesting aside from Amazon also reveals that the new typography and layout improvements are currently only available on around 500,000 books, ‘with thousands more being added every week’.

Nevertheless at just $119, the high-res Paperwhite has got to be the best quality Kindle deal available, although it’s not such a good deal in the UK, with the price at £109 ($172) when a fair deal on the present rate of exchange would see that set at £75 (possibly £90, taking into account 20% VAT). These prices are for the wi-fi-only model which will be available from June 30.

Amazon adds Bookerly font to Kindle choice

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