Kindle in Manila?

Should I get a Kindle?

I’ve always been a voracious reader.  I used to read at least a book a day back in high school.  College I read less and med school less still.  Now that I’m between jobs, aka applying for residency, I find myself looking at shiny new ebook readers. The thing is, how do I decide between a Kindle or the new Sony Reader touch edition?  Does access matter more?  Do I want a touch screen?  What about expandable memory?

What to do? How to choose?

What the Kindle has that the Sony Reader doesn’t:

  1. Access to Amazon/Low Book Prices.  Amazon has made it supremely easy to buy books.  Moreover, Amazon’s books are cheaper than other bookstores.  If the books were sold at 9.99, this would’ve been a no-brainer.  Unfortunately, Amazon plans to sell their books at 11.99, which is twice the price of a paperback here in Manila.  Wrong move, Amazon.
  2. 3G Wireless/Books in Under 60 Seconds.  This is actually a downside.  I don’t mind transferring downloaded books via USB to Kindle.  Especially if it will spare me the mess that is the Amazon George Orwell fiasco.  Amazon may have done the right thing in the end, but I’m not so sure if they would have been able to do so in a more restrictive political climate.  Also, wireless = impulse buying = bankruptcy.  Not so good, that.
  3. International Coverage. The fact that it’s possible to own a Kindle now triggers the desire for one.
  4. The irrational lure of a Kindle.  This is why I want a Kindle.  I, like any other techie who loves to read, will trade my library, my piano, my electronic gadgetry for a date with a Kindle.  I want a Kindle!  I want a Kindle now!   Dammit.

But.

The cons of a Kindle:

  1. Fugly.  If this was high school, the Kindle would be the girl who’s pretty on the inside.  The Sony Reader Touch Edition on the other hand is the girl with breeding, bucks and brains and a hot boyfriend.  If this were Glee, Rachel is Kindle, Quinn is Sony.  I’m sorry, Amazon.  Even my programmable scientific calculator is prettier than the Kindle.
  2. Nonexpandable memory.  I am a greedy girl.  Even if the Kindle can hold 1500 books, I want the possibility of more.  I want to hold my entire ebook library inside my ebook reader.  Including my med books.
  3. Nonupgradable.  Every time Amazon releases a  new version, the books stored in the old version can’t be transferred to the new one.  “Bezos suggests that they give away or resell their Kindles and buy new ones.”  making me feel like Amazon just wants to make a lot of money off me.
  4. More formats.  Sony can read more formats, but Calibre takes care of this problem, by allowing for conversion from Kindle’s proprietary ebook format to others.
  5. Battery life.  Sony Reader: 2 weeks on a single charge.  Kindle: four days.  Seriously!

But.

The con of a Sony Style Touch Reader:

  1. Cost. On the website, the Sony Style Touch Reader is approximately 300 USD, whilst the Kindle is 280 USD.   Amazon says that the Kindle will sell for less than 280 USD here in Manila.  (Approx 260 USD).  Plus, Amazon’s ebooks are generally cheaper, even at 11.99 USD.  (B&N sells ebooks at 9.99, but I will need a default credit card with a US address which I don’t have.)  Unless I get my ebooks for free, a possible scenario, the Kindle might actually be the better deal.
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9 thoughts on “Kindle in Manila?

  1. Kindle can be excellent way to keep up your reading habit without spending a fortune on hard copy books. Moreover, there are tons of places on internet where you can download scores of free ebooks.

    With kindle, it can become super easy to read the digital books.

  2. Well yes, but a kindle isn’t absolutely necessary. I used a palm before it broke down on me. Will probably get the new Sony Reader. It’s so much prettier than the Kindle. :-)

  3. I’ve had my sony prs 600 for over two months now. Got it from gadgetgrocery.com. And my verdict…I’m keeping it! I saw a Kindle in Megamall yesterday and they sell it for about P24,000.00. I got my sony for P15,500. Yep, the prs600 looks better. I was tempted before to have a relative buy a Kindle for me but when I saw that they support very few file formats, I changed my mind. It’s just a lot easier to transfer books in my sony. Plus, since we live in the Phils, buying ebooks from Amazon would be a waste of money because 1.they cost more than the paperbacks from NBS or Powerbooks 2.no reselling value.
    Didn’t check the Kindle wi-fi though. Dunno if it’ll work here in the Philippines. The wi-fi is the biggest come-on of kindle but then…I-pad came along.~^^~

    Anyway, think about it before you decide to buy. I love my sony prs600 but it took me about two months before finally buying one. Read some customers’ review. They helped me a lot.

  4. Thanks marren! I eventually decided to get an ipod touch. I decided against a dedicated e-reader since the touch was more functional. Listening to music while reading on one machine is great! I also like that I don’t have to lug around many pieces of equipment. The ipod touch is backlit, so I can read in bed or while sitting in the sun.

    I think there’s global wi-fi for the kindle. I dislike the proprietary format though. With the touch, there’s stanza which can convert from common file formats (lit, html, pdf, doc, azw to epub) so I can read almost anything I like.

  5. Hi. I am browsing the internet, hoping that I could get any clues as to where to get a kindle 3 here in Manila.

    But this post is in 2009. Im not even sure if this is still active. In case it is, do you have any idea where I can get a Kindle 3 here in Manila? Is it available in malls, or maybe in Greenhills?

    thanks..

  6. yep. but it might cause me more money as I have to pay tax and other fees once it gets here…

    thanks, anyway…

    • Hi..I’ve got a Kindle that I asked my friend from the UK to buy for me….it’s worked well for almost nine months, it was bought in January of last year. I still love it…but the hitch is, you’ve got to have an address in the UK or the US for you to be able to purchase books that are only available in the US or UK. If you register it using an address in the Philippines, then, due to copyright laws, etc…you’re only able to access books that are available for the Asia Pacific…anyway, it was great, the battery lasts for 2 months..it does not compare to a book but it is definitely handy when you’re on travel and you read a lot…but the thing is it started acting up recently…always restarting and now I think it is on the brink of dying…so it worked for a few months but now I don’t know what do to with it…suggestion is don’t buy it…you’re better off with an ipad because it has a kindle apps..

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