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Kindle Oasis (2017) - The Perfect eBook reader

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Wednesday
Dec062017

Review: Kindle Oasis (2017) - The Perfect eBook reader

By Gadjo Cardenas Sevilla

2017 marks the 10th year anniversary of the Kindle eBook reader which is truly one of the revolutionary inventions of our time.

Amazon's Kindle ushered in the era of eReaders, which have made it possible to simulate the visual quality of paper on an electronic device capable of carrying thousands of books and documents but which is thin and surprisingly light.

The early Kindle was a beast by today's standards. It tried to do too much. It came with a QWERTY keyboard, a web browser and probably an e-mail client. This was at a time when smartphones were BlackBerry devices and not iPhones, so you get the idea.

Through the years, Amazon has slimmed down the Kindle's feature set. It has improved the display technology, added much needed backlighting, enhanced battery life as well as made the device more about reading and less about being a gadget.

The end result of all this innovation is the Kindle Oasis 7-inch. A second generation version of Amazon's most refined and impressive eBook reader which now boasts water and dust resistance.

This is a premium Kindle, it is made out of sleek aluminum and has a chic fabric origami cover that's reminiscent of a hardbound book. The price is up there, too, but for those of us who love reading and who are already deeply invested in the Kindle ecosystem, it is perfection.

Up to 7-inches from last year's 6-inch model, the Kindle Oasis does the best job of making you focus on the content and makes the technology disappear.  I've been lagging in my reading list but I was able to blitz through Walter Isaacson's Leonarde Da Vinci biography in a matter of days (and nights) because the Kindle Oasis makes reading so convenient.

The sleek design, the responsive forward and back button plus the improved and more readable e-Ink technology really makes this feel like a futuristic eReader. 

Yet, having been a Kindle user since they first came out, everything about the Kindle Oasis is familiar. It says something that I prefer to read my Kobo ebooks on a smartphone app but yearn for reading Kindle books on a Kindle device over other devices, Amazon just creates the most elegant and reader-friendly interfaces without the hard sell of social or high-tech features.

That's not to say that the Kindle Oasis is bereft of any innovation. Aside from the larger display,  it is also the highest resolution display— 7” and 300 ppi, reads like real paper.   

We also get an adaptive front light that adjusts depending on ambient light. Amazon has also included Audible integration, this in interesting since the Kindle Oasis has no speaker or headphone jack. Instead, you can pair the Oasis to a bluetooth headset or speaker and listen from there. The fact that this eReader is waterproof could very well be the tradeoff for a simple yet insanely useful headphone jack

As much as I love reading, I've recently discovered the joy of audiobooks thanks to Andy Weir's Artemis (read and voiced by the talented Rosario Dawson) and it was transformative to be able to go from reading a book to being read to. 

I know Audible audio books aren't cheap but they are worth it, specially if you need can't read a book for some reason, it's good to have audiobook integration.

The Amazon Kindle Oasis (2017) is the pinnacle of premium eReader design, it is the culmination of 10 years of refinement and an impressive flagship device.

For those who find the price of the Oasis too high, the Kindle Paperwhite is an excellent option, it has a smaller display and is thicker, but it has a great backlit display and all the software features.

Discriminating lovers of eBooks, or people who use a Kindle to read other documents now have a wide choice and at the top of this heap and brings excitement to a very mature product segment.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

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