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Kindle Paperwhite (2021) Vs. Kindle Paperwhite (2018): Should You Upgrade?

Amazon launched its newest Kindle Paperwhite in September 2021 with ample new features — but is it a worthy upgrade over the 2018 Paperwhite model? Long before Amazon was making Echo speakers, Fire TV streaming sticks, or affordable Android tablets, the company's hardware division was best known for its Kindle e-readers. Someone could buy a virtual copy of a book, access it on their Kindle, and read it anywhere they wanted on a comfortable, eye-friendly display.

In the years since the first Kindle debuted in 2007, the lineup has continued to grow and expand. Today it consists of the baseline Kindle, Kindle Paperwhite, Kindle Oasis, and Kindle Kids. Among all of those, Paperwhite stands out as a solid mix of enhanced features and competitive pricing. It delivers a better reading experience compared to the regular Kindle, costs considerably less money than the Oasis, and is a solid e-reader all around. The 2018 Kindle Paperwhite has served Kindle fans well for a few years, but thanks to the 2021 model that's now available, owners of the 2018 one might find themselves itching for an upgrade.

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When comparing the Kindle Paperwhite (2021) and Paperwhite (2018), it's important to remember that the core experience of both e-readers is the same. Both are compact gadgets that allow folks to download books and read them on an e-ink display. Both Paperwhite models are comfortable to hold, have nearly double the resolution of the regular Kindle, and come with Wi-Fi and free cellular connectivity for internet access on the go. Outside of those fundamentals, however, the Kindle Paperwhite (2021) takes a clear lead over its Paperwhite (2018) sibling.

One of the biggest advantages of the Paperwhite (2021) is its larger display. Amazon increased the screen from 6.0-inches up to 6.8-inches and maintained the same crisp resolution of 300 ppi. This was achieved by drastically reducing the top and side bezels compared to the Paperwhite (2018), allowing the Paperwhite (2021) to have a larger canvas while maintaining the same general footprint as its predecessor. The bigger screen is further improved thanks to the new warm light filter. Unlike the 2018 Paperwhite, the 2021 model can change its display color temperature to be more comfortable to read throughout the day — such as becoming much warmer when it's late at night. General display brightness should also be much better, as the Paperwhite (2021) includes 17 LEDs compared to the 5 LEDs found on the Paperwhite (2018).

Taking a look under the hood, the Kindle Paperwhite (2021) continues to impress. Powering the e-reader is a new processor that's 20 percent faster than Paperwhite (2018). Battery life also increases from 6 weeks per charge to 10 weeks, not to mention the faster charging speeds thanks to the jump from Micro-USB to USB-C.

The Kindle Paperwhite (2018) is still a fine e-reader for basic use. However, it's difficult to look at the Paperwhite (2021) and not be impressed with its various upgrades. The display is bigger and more comfortable at night, it runs faster, the battery lasts an extra four weeks, and charge times are improved. With a retail price of just $140, making the jump from the 2018 Paperwhite to the 2021 version isn't a bad idea at all.

Next: Why iPad mini Is Now A Better Buy Than Apple's iPad Air

Source: Amazon

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