“Heads up readers – all-new, top of the line Kindle almost ready. 8th generation. Details next week.” So says a Tweet from the ultimate source at Amazon, CEO Jeff Bezos. One more time:

Now the fun begins. “All-new” suggests perhaps something more than just another Voyage. If it is still a Voyage, we’re apparently only talking about a Voyage 2—but “8th generation” can take on a lot of meanings.

In a post last year, following the failure of a 2 to appear last November despite a prediction from Good e-Reader, I did not rule out the possibility of a reinvented Voyage appearing this year. Could the “all-new, top of the line Kindle” be it? Might the 2 have been delayed because of supplier issues, including something chip related?

If the chip is fast enough—whether this is the 2 or not—will lines be blurred at least a tad between e-readers and tablets? I wouldn’t bet on it. But who knows?

So what’s your own thinking? Go into your Amazonology mode and join the guessing game about what Bezos has up his sleeve. Among the possibilities for the new model? A Liquavista screen, as Nate wonders? Or maybe text to speech? Or—please Jeff, please, please, please—a great choice of fonts? Maybe even optional all-text bolding for the benefit of the millions of Americans with contrast-perception issues? Come on, Jeff. I’m rooting for you to do the right thing and offer both TTS and more font choices?

Fun detail (updated 9:47 p.m.): Several Kindle models are on sale today as I write this, including the basic Kindle for $50, the Paperwhite for $90 and the Voyage for $150. Clearing the way for new stock? Could other refreshes of the Kindle line—not just a top-of-the-liner—be unveiled soon?

Now—a little more on the sale: It’s for Prime members and I can see the lower prices only on my desktop, not in a mobile app I used. You can tell if the sale is still on if a thin orange band appears near the top of the page with the lower prices. Because I was relying on the mobile app, I at first thought the sale had ended. Not so. Big thanks to SteveH and barryem for alerting me that the sale is still happening.

Related: Kindle Voyage 2 on track for November? Overseas Amazon support reps say yes. No confirmation from U.S. ones.

(Via Nate.)


  1. Yeah baby! Bring it on. The only thing that annoys me, the recent release of the Voyage on the Canadian Amazon site is basically saying we are their dumping ground for older models. In any case, looking forward to a revitalised e-ink model above all other options.

  2. I requested of Jeff Bezos and the Kindle Team:
    1) Larger screen option of Voyage quality
    2) More font options including font weight
    3) More on device storage/removable storage
    4) Pocket integration
    5) Possible color option
    I did not ask for it but if they do come out with a Liquavista unit I hope that they bring back audio
    Hopefully they come up with even better innovations

  3. @Alain and @Steve: We’ll think good thoughts. As for the sale continuing, I’m a Prime member and I don’t see the discounted prices. Maybe there are variables at work here that we don’t know about. Or is Jeff picking on me because I’ve kicked Amazon around on the TTS and font issues? 😉 Further speculation welcome on the forthcoming device or devices. Meanwell, Alaine, my sympathy on Amazon’s delayed release of hardware for Canadians. David

    • Thanks for the kind thoughts. I waited and, because I am desperately hooked on ereader in all its forms (since 2000), I resorted to an import deal through shopereader.com. Found it horribly expensive, but then when I saw that the 3G model goes for CDN $ 369 – not so bad. So worst case, if the new hardware is *that* superior, I might resort to that method again…..

  4. @SteveH: It’s the weirdest thing. Yes, on desktop, I see the orange band now with the $150 Voyage price. But the link doesn’t work. And the price didn’t show up on the mobile app I used with an iPad. Strange. Now back to my desktop. Here’s what I saw when I put the item in my cart just now:

    Perhaps I’m missing out on a rebate or whatever, but as you can see, that’s still a $199 price. Oh, the wonders of Amazon. I’m sure there’s an explanation somewhere. Perhaps if I called Support, I could still get the discount.

    And, yes, Amazon’s site indicates that my Prime membership is current.


  5. I haven’t done this but I read in another forum that if you put it in your cart and then go to checkout you can see the discounted price.

    Actually I just tried this and sure enough in the checkout it gets discounted.


  6. @Barry: The extra step worked when I went to the actual checkout, thanks. Needless to say, I didn’t go through with the purchase: I’m waiting for the new one ;-). Meanwhile I remain curious why the mobile app didn’t show the lower price anywhere. At any rate I’m delighted to see a new model or models on the way! David

  7. Look at the picture of Jeff Bezos. He looks like he’s aged 20 years in the last five. He reminds me of what Steve Jobs looked like when Apple was trying to minimize the latter’s health troubles. I’m no fan of Amazon’s business ethics and Bezos role in that, but I hope he’s not in similar trouble. I used to care for kids with leukemia. I wouldn’t wish cancer on anyone.
    Bluetooth has been mentioned by some as a possible new feature. Apple has been shamefully laggardly at adding Bluetooth features to its epaper Kindles even though, the last time I checked, the chip they were using for WiFi also did Bluetooth.

    I’m hoping Amazon will add Bluetooth with these features:

    1. Working with a Bluetooth keyboard for note-taking, etc. That’d beat the socks off either a touchscreen or tiny buttons. Cursor keys would be handy too, as would assigning some role to function buttons and control keys. Something needs to be done about the Kindle’s clumsy UI. It makes me feel like a little kid just learning to write and draw.

    2. Working with a Bluetooth mouse, making the typical two buttons page forward and back. Those who dislike reaching to touch the screen to turn a page would like that. Even more important, it’d be great for those with mobility issues. Merely touching a conveniently placed button would page. That’d finally add a long needed and key disability feature to the Kindle product line. For those with limitations, that Bluetooth feature would replacing clumsy, page-turning gadgets costing hundreds of dollars with a cheap $10 Bluetooth mouse.
    Amazon could also add a host of other features to their cellular model that would delight travelers. Even without GPS hardware, the location of the nearest cellular tower could be used to summon a local map that’d give places to see, dine or shop. But I doubt that will happen. I’ve given up on seeing Amazon add to their epaper devices features you can get with almost any smartphone or tablet.
    Sadly, nothing about either of my two wishes for epaper:

    1. A rugged, simple version that’d fit in a kid’s jean pocket and be almost indestructible.

    2. One with a large enough screen that older people who need larger type won’t have to page so often and younger people can display books with side-by-side columns like real books. Both would reduce the chief irritation of all digital readers, having to page so often.
    My advice to those tempted to buy but with a limited budget: Be patient. This is a “top-of-the-line” model, so it will come out a bit overpriced. Wait at least for Amazon’s first discount. Then you won’t be telling yourself, “Why didn’t I wait? I could have saved $50.” Spend the money on books instead.


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