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Handhelds Hardware

I Want a Kindle Killer 321

lpress (707742) writes "Amazon's Kindle is a good e-reader and they've sold around 40 million units, but it is far from perfect. It could be significantly improved with speech recognition for commands and text entry, a well-designed database for marginal notes and annotations, and integration with laptop and desktop computers. Google, Apple and Microsoft all have device design and manufacturing experience as well as stores that sell books and other written material. A Kindle-killing e-reader would be low-hanging fruit for Apple, Google or Microsoft — think of the competition if they each built one!" Handwriting as an input method would be nice too; a friend in college had one of the experimental Windows XP tablet PCs, and it was great for note taking and document annotation.
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I Want a Kindle Killer

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  • by spiritplumber ( 1944222 ) on Wednesday May 28, 2014 @10:51AM (#47108645) Homepage
    great battery life, runs Android and is easy to root so you can do other stuff with it... I'd have added a keyboard on the back, for typing with fingers while holding it. Why not just make more of that?
  • Missing the point (Score:5, Insightful)

    by rjstanford ( 69735 ) on Wednesday May 28, 2014 @10:56AM (#47108747) Homepage Journal

    I believe that the Kindle is an excellent device primarily because it does one thing - its an eReader. I don't normally write all over my paper books and have no desire to do so on the Kindle either. Far from a luddite, I've got a ton of technology devices, but sometimes simple task-focussed pieces are better. My paperwhite is easy on the eyes, the battery lasts for a long time, its very lightweight, and I never have to troubleshoot it or wonder why its various components aren't playing well with each other.

    Not every device needs to expand its footprint until all are equal. Want to read on a Fire or an iPad? Feel free. Don't try to turn the regular Kindle into a poor version of one of those.

  • by carnivore302 ( 708545 ) on Wednesday May 28, 2014 @10:57AM (#47108765) Journal
    Why would I want speech recognition from a book? Or handwriting as input method?

    The only thing I would want them to improve on the kindle is the speech output.
  • by xtal ( 49134 ) on Wednesday May 28, 2014 @10:59AM (#47108783)

    All I want is a paper replacement.

    There are large e-ink displays, but they all lack high resolution input - as high as a 0.5mm pencil can get you.

    15 years after I graduated, I still carry engineering paper, and I get it from the same bookstore. All that's changed is I take pictures of my notes instead of scan them now.

    Come on Apple - want to innovate? Figure that one out. I triple dog dare you.

  • Dead wrong (Score:5, Insightful)

    by skaag ( 206358 ) on Wednesday May 28, 2014 @11:01AM (#47108807) Homepage Journal

    While your suggestions speak to my inner geek, I think if Amazon does add those features they will kill the kindle.

    That product sold 40 million because it does NOT have those features. It is already far more convenient than using a paperback, looks bright enough to read even in low light conditions, and can hold tons of books. For those 40 million people who bought a Kindle, that's more than enough. Add more features and you'll make the product cumbersome, suddenly it needs more processing power, suddenly battery life sucks...

    No, I say the Kindle should remain as it is, and this simplicity is its strength.

  • by AuMatar ( 183847 ) on Wednesday May 28, 2014 @11:01AM (#47108811)

    I have a kindle. I don't want it to be anything other than a book replacement. I don't want to input text, annotations (in fact I think ebooks are horrible for anything you would annotate, like a textbook- you need to be able to flip through those), or anything else. I care only about ease of reading the text and battery life (where it excels). If I wanted a tablet, I'd get a tablet.

    About the only thing I'd want changed is faster page loading times and better tools for organizing books (list of authors and series, for example) that I've bought.

  • They have those. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by gstoddart ( 321705 ) on Wednesday May 28, 2014 @11:11AM (#47108959) Homepage

    They're called tablets. :-P

  • by Moskit ( 32486 ) on Wednesday May 28, 2014 @11:15AM (#47109027)

    Ebook readers (the real ones based on e-ink) are good as they are. The less features the better, bookmarks and integration with vocabularies are enough for reading through a book.

    If you need fancy stuff - get a tablet, it has features that you mentioned and much more.

  • Pads and Palms (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Geoffrey.landis ( 926948 ) on Wednesday May 28, 2014 @11:43AM (#47109395) Homepage

    lpress wants a Kindle, but with "speech recognition for commands and text entry, a well-designed database for marginal notes and annotations, and integration with laptop and desktop computers."

    That's not a Kindle, which is a single-purpose machine for reading; that is a general purpose machine. Apple already makes the machine desired: it's the iPad.

    Handwriting as an input method would be nice too

    Ah, now you're re-inventing the late lamented "Newton", not to mention the Palms of yesteryear (where the "handwriting" had to be in their unique graffiti alphabet)

The absent ones are always at fault.