New Kindle Oasis (2017) adds big screen and waterproofing, cuts price


"The device itself resembles last year's Oasis, but now has a larger 7" display (at 330ppi), and retains the asymmetry of the previous design.

Plus, as mentioned previously, the internal battery is larger, delivering up to six weeks of stamina without the need to attach an external battery cover, not that you get the option anymore; there are no longer any contacts on the rear to enable the feature.

That means you'll be able to read physically on the screen but then switch it over to the audiobook while you're on a walk and seamlessly switch back when you have a chance to read on the screen again.

That gets you WiFi connectivity and 8GB of storage.

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Unlike last year's Kindle Oasis, which used a magnetic case you attached to the e-reader to extend its battery life, the new Oasis relies entirely on its built-in battery. Still, the new model is by far the sturdiest Kindle I've ever held, thanks to its metal case. Audiobooks show up in the ebook gallery with a headphone icon appended, and once opened you can tap to switch between the text and audio versions (the Kindle Oasis remembers which you were using last, and re-opens it in that state).

One last new feature mirrors Apple's True Tone display as built-in ambient light sensors can automatically adjust the Oasis's display to compensated for your surroundings, whether you're in a dimly-lit room or outside in direct sunlight.

Despite the increase in size, though, 2017's Oasis remains ridiculously light at 194g - 10g lighter than the lightest Kindle Paperwhite - and tapers to a super-slim 3.4mm at its thinnest point.

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That aluminum body is now IPX8 rated, which means the new Kindle Oasis can handle immersion for up to sixty minutes in up to two meters of fresh water. That's a welcome change, but we're still missing book-specific fonts. There is no additional monthly fee for limited data access. These now appear on the device's home screen alongside your ebooks and can be streamed via Bluetooth to wireless speakers and headphones.

All of this comes with the usual Kindle store and software. Of course, you'll still have to buy the Audible and Kindle releases separately.

But at least using the feature is child's play.

Speaking of screen, that 7in display is a real beaut. And yet Amazon has also reduced the price. The $249.99 second-generation Oasis is also less expensive than its predecessor, which was priced at $289.99 when it launched a year ago. At a time when many manufacturers are hiking their prices mercilessly and £700 seems to have become the new normal price for flagship phones, this is welcome news indeed. The new reader is up for pre-order today and will start shipping on October 31. And it just got better, with a larger screen and waterproofing for bath-time reading. With Whispersync for Voice on the new Kindle Oasis, you will be able to listen to an audiobook while in the vehicle coming home from work, then switch back to the textual version when you get home - everything will by perfectly synchronized on the same Kindle. Keep your eyes peeled for the full review, which I'll be posting in the coming weeks.

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