Best Kindle E-Readers

Updated November 2019
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

5 Models Considered
5 Hours Researched
1 Experts Interviewed
243 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for best Kindle e-readers

Last Updated November 2019

Do you love to read? Thanks to the state-of-the-art technology found in modern e-readers, it’s easy to discover classics or catch up on the latest reads and news without buying stacks of books, newspapers, or magazines. With backlit screens, ample storage space, and exceptional battery life, the family of Amazon Kindle e-readers offers the features you need to enjoy your favorite readable media. These devices are similar to tablets but usually lighter. They feature streamlined builds, reliable wireless connectivity, and vivid print technology for enhanced reading.

Kindle e-readers are available in several designs. Newer models include the latest upgrades, such as waterproof casings and superior screen resolution. With your new device, you can simply visit the Kindle Store to choose what you want to read, download it, and enjoy.

If you’re a bookworm whose library shelf is full, consider the move to digital books to save space and money. Love the feel of a book in your hands and can’t imagine enjoying the reading experience on a Kindle? These e-readers are designed to mimic the look and feel of reading a traditional paperback. Try it and you might never go back to print books again!

Turn off the wireless connection on your Kindle device to conserve battery life.

Key considerations

What to expect from a Kindle e-reader device

A Kindle device is designed expressly for reading. If you’re interested in a tablet for browsing the internet or catching up on emails, there are a variety of alternatives suitable for your needs. A Kindle, however, is best for the bookworm. The highly specialized device allows you to store hundreds of books for your reading enjoyment. The low-glare construction makes the screen easy on the eyes and mimics the look and feel of a regular paper page.

If you enjoy borrowing books from your local library, ask your librarian which types of e-readers are compatible with their e-reader borrowing system before you invest in a Kindle e-reader. Otherwise, log in and purchase e-books from the Amazon Kindle Store right from your device. Just finished the first book in a trilogy? Grab the sequel right away with a few taps on the touchscreen.

File compatibility

These are some of the common file types that are compatible with Kindle e-readers.

  • AZW: Amazon’s proprietary e-book file type
  • Unprotected MOBI and PRC
  • PDFs: Read work or class documents right on your Kindle
  • ePub
  • Word documents (doc and Docx)
  • Rich Text Format (RTF)
  • Plain text (txt)


With a little know-how, it’s possible to convert incompatible files so that they can be read on your e-reader.

Remember that when you download an e-book from the Amazon Kindle store, the file is copyright protected and cannot be transferred to other e-readers that are not registered to your account. The downside to an e-reader like the Kindle is that you typically cannot share books with others. A few books allow you the option to do so, but they are few and far between. You can, however, read a Kindle book on any Kindle device, whether it’s on your physical e-reader or Kindle app on your PC, Mac, or smartphone.

A high-end reading experience

The Kindle Oasis is a pricey e-reader, but it has the features to match. It’s waterproof, so you can read without worry near the pool or at the beach. The ample storage allows you to carry an entire library in your purse or backpack. The e-reader features auto lighting that adjusts as needed, and it’s WiFi and 3G enabled.

Device size

Kindle screen size varies from six to seven inches. The e-reader is designed to feel like a book in your hands and is light enough to be held in one hand.

Region

Be sure to buy a Kindle from the right Amazon store. You may run into problems if you purchase a U.S. Kindle if you’re primarily based in Canada, for instance.

EXPERT TIP

Love to read while indulging in a late-night bubble bath? Choose between the Oasis or Paperwhite for a waterproof backlit reading experience.


Staff  | BestReviews

Features

Adjustable light

Are you always reading before bed? Don’t bother your partner with a bright reading light. Choose a Kindle device with an adjustable backlight. Newer models feature a warm-light setting to prevent strain on the eyes at night.

Waterproofing

Some Kindle devices are waterproof, so you can take your library to the beach or enjoy an exciting thriller in the tub.

Connectivity

Kindle devices are WiFi enabled so you can download books from anywhere if you have a connection. To download books on-the-go wherever you are, choose a model with mobile connectivity.

Touchscreen

While older versions of the Kindle e-reader had physical buttons to turn pages, many newer models have ditched buttons for an intuitive touchscreen design.

A low-cost library in your hands

The All-New Kindle is the ideal choice for readers seeking an affordable alternative to the Oasis. The anti-glare screen features a built-in light. You can read comfortably whether you’re in the dark or full sun. It boasts an impressive battery life, and although it’s not waterproof, its sturdiness is comparable to other models.

Audible-enabled

Not all Kindle devices are Audible-enabled. In some regions, you cannot access Audible on a Kindle device. Older e-readers are also unlikely to work with Audible. However, with those that are, you can access your Audible library with ease and listen to all your favorite books if you ever get tired of reading with your eyes.

Battery life

Kindle e-readers boast an impressive battery life. This is good, because why waste time charging when you could be diving into a good book? It’s likely that you won’t have to charge your device for several weeks. Notably, battery life varies according to how much you use your Kindle, whether you have wireless connectivity enabled, if you’re using Audible, and how bright the backlight is.

Storage

Storage varies from 4GB to 32GB. You can choose between 8GB or 32GB storage capacity in higher-priced models. Thankfully, e-books aren’t space hungry, so even with limited storage, you can hoard quite a few novels.

DID YOU KNOW?

Did you know you can create notes and highlight passages of any e-book you read on your Kindle? Simply tap and hold, and a selection menu will appear, allowing you to bookmark poignant lines or note your impressions of a chapter.

Kindle e-reader prices

Kindle e-readers vary in price from $90 to over $200. The models available will change over time, but generally speaking, devices with less storage and fewer features hover closer to the $90 mark. At the top of the price range, you’ll find feature-rich Kindle e-readers with lots of storage and other desirable features, like a waterproof body.

If you’re looking for a sweet spot, check out Kindle e-readers in the range of $120 to $180. Many people find exactly what they are looking for in this middle range.

EXPERT TIP

Add a protective case to your cart at the same time you buy your Kindle e-reader. This is especially helpful if you tend to read on the go.


Staff  | BestReviews

Tips

  • Did you know that you can send files directly to your Kindle device without even hooking it up to your computer via USB? Go to your Amazon accounts page to view your content device settings. From there, go to Preferences and select Personal Document Settings. You’ll find an email associated with your Kindle device. You can email documents to this email, and they’ll automatically be sent to your Kindle. Add approved emails to the Approved Personal Document E-mail List to receive documents from verified emails (either yours or other people you trust).
  • Your Kindle can learn your reading speed and estimate how long it’ll take you to read the next chapter of your book. Tap the bottom left of the screen to change the “percentage complete” view to one that delivers a time estimate.
  • If you’re reading on multiple devices, Kindle’s Whispersync technology can keep you on track no matter when you decide to pick up where you left off.
  • Don’t forget to check out Amazon’s Kindle Deals page on a regular basis. You’ll often find bestsellers on sale for less than $5.
  • Are you a Goodreads member? You can connect your account on your Kindle (not compatible with all versions) and easily mark books as read right from your device.
  • You can share books with members of your family with Kindle’s Amazon Household function.
  • You can create collections on your Kindle device and sort books into categories, just like you might group them on an actual bookshelf. Create categories like horror, contemporary fiction, non-fiction, and more to keep track of your many books.
  • Are you on a tight budget? There are plenty of online resources for free books. Check out Project Gutenberg or Open Culture, where you can browse and download Kindle-compatible e-books that are no longer under copyright in the U.S. Enjoy the classics that you always meant to read but never got around to!
To enjoy listening to audiobooks on an Audible-enabled Kindle, you’ll need an Audible membership.

FAQ

Q. What is Kindle Unlimited?
A.
It’s a monthly service similar to Audible that allows users access to an unlimited number of books. Download and read as many books as you can devour in a month. Note that the selection is not infinite and that some Kindle e-books are not available to read with this plan.

Q. What types of settings can I adjust on my Kindle in order to customize my reading experience?
A.
You can customize the font size, font type, light brightness, spacing, page orientation, and more.

Q. How long does it take to charge a Kindle device?
A.
Charging takes approximately four hours if your device is completely drained of power.

The team that worked on this review
  • Jennifer
    Jennifer
    Writer
  • Melinda
    Melinda
    Web Producer
  • Melissa
    Melissa
    Senior Editor
  • Steph
    Steph
    Writer

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