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Discussion Starter #1
I found this on the Mobileread.com forum. One of their posters, Sporadic, discovered this article:

http://www.computerworld.com/action/article.do?command=viewArticleBasic&articleId=9127739

Kindle fans upset that Kindle 2 drops SD slot, replaceable battery
Amazon calls the changes improvements, not a downgrade

Matt Hamblen

February 10, 2009 (Computerworld)
Users of Amazon.com Inc.'s original Kindle are registering disapproval that the Kindle 2, due out Feb. 24, doesn't have a slot for an SD card or a removable battery.

"I'm pissed at Amazon," said one person named Vicki, commenting on an Amazon.com forum after the Kindle 2 was unveiled. "I've had my Kindle for almost a year and I really like it. When it dies, as all electronics do, the 'upgrade' will be a downgrade that won't be as useful as my current Kindle."

She joined more than 20 other current Kindle fans on the Amazon site voicing concerns about the Kindle 2's lack of an SD slot and its use of a battery that's not user-accessible.

Elsewhere on the Amazon site, other fans griped about how the online retailer has given less-than-ideal treatment to original Kindle users with the announcement of Kindle 2. Amazon offers more than 1,000 Kindle-related discussion topics, underscoring the e-reader's popularity.

Many of the complaints that have bubbled up since the Kindle 2's unveiling Monday came from users who like to add an SD card to the original Kindle so they have enough storage for plenty of books. Some said the 2GB of storage offered in the Kindle 2 won't be enough.

Users also criticized the new battery, saying they have grown accustomed to removing the battery in the original Kindle to reboot the device. After a year, many said the battery needed replacing anyway because it wouldn't hold a charge.

While the changes seem like downgrades to some, Amazon's Kindle unit director, Charlie Tritschler, said both moves will actually improve the Kindle 2. "Compared to the original Kindle, the Kindle 2 makes it convenient to keep content in one place," Tritschler said today. And the built-in 2GB of storage in the Kindle 2 means 1.4GB is available to the user -- almost eight times the 180MB of storage offered in the original Kindle, he said.

"That's room for 1,500 books," Tritschler said, noting that any book a Kindle user buys is backed up on Amazon's servers -- and is available to the reader at any time. "There's no need for additional storage."

Some users complained that Amazon might be eliminating the SD slot to force its Kindle customers into buying only Amazon content. But Tritschler said the Kindle 2 still allows users to access non-Amazon books, text files and even some music that is not protected by Digital Rights Management systems. They can do so via a USB cable connected to the Kindle 2 or through e-mail, since each Kindle has an e-mail address, he said.

As for the battery, Tritschler said it was made nonremovable to accommodate the Kindle 2's thinner size. "We really pushed to make it as thin as possible," yielding a device that is just 0.36 in. thick.

A nonremovable battery does not require solid casing like the removable kind do, meaning they take up less space, he said. And Kindle 2 now has a chip for active battery management that was not in the original. That chip regulates charge flows and helps make the battery last for two weeks when not in wireless mode, or four days when connected wirelessly, he said.

Tritschler announced today that the Kindle 2's battery can replaced under warranty for a year. After that, it can be replaced in the Amazon factory for $59.

Asked how users can reboot Kindle 2 since there's no removable battery, Tritschler said a new command takes care of that problem. "We've solved that as well," he said. "You hold down the power switch for 14 seconds."

Expanding on Amazon's explanations about the changes, Gartner Inc. analyst Van Baker noted that Amazon -- and all device makers -- constantly seek to cut down on the cost of materials. An SD card slot on top of the added built-in storage might have cost too much, Baker conjectured. "With any new product, you always get some complaints about how 'stupid' the manufacturer is for not doing something," Baker said.

Tritschler's final take on the SD card/battery brouhaha: "The Kindle 2 is a better product in both respects."
 

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CS said:
Tritschler announced today that the Kindle 2's battery can replaced under warranty for a year. After that, it can be replaced in the Amazon factory for $59.
Not loving that part. I wonder what the life expectancy of the battery is. I'm worried it's not much longer than a year, given they really seem to be pushing the 2-year extended warranty.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
KindleKid said:
I dont know why people are so bent out of shape about this. The storage is more than enough..
I really hope you're just parodying the article, because less than 2GB is not enough for me or most serious readers.
 

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For me, the storage capacity of 2GB is indeed sufficient.
 

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I am a serious reader and I have yet to fill up my original Kindle. The reason is because I delete the books after I read them and store them on Amazon. Anytime I want to reread one I just download it back to my Kindle. The sd card that I bought when I first got my kindle has yet to be used.
 

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I don't know... 2GB is a lot if you only have ebooks. I could live with only ebooks but some people uses the kindle for audio books and mp3.
 

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KindleKid said:
I dont know why people are so bent out of shape about this. The storage is more than enough..
Why?
Because first you are NOT getting 2 gigs of open memory to hold the books. Its less then 2 gigs.
Secondly everytime the firmware updates where do you think the firmware will go? It will take up MORE of that memory. EVERYTIME your K2 updates its firmware more and more of that onboard memory goes bye bye..
Why not 10gigs ,20, 40??
I got a $10 mp3 player at KMart that has 4gigs of memory. It seems pretty bad they are selling the K2 for 359 with only 2gigs ram..
 

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Just a note on the Firmware. When I upgraded to 1.2, I started with 28mb free. When the upgrade was over I had 37mb free. I actually had more room on my Kindle after the Firmware update. Honest. I was shocked when I saw that, but it's the truth.

Just remember, you also have unlimited storage on Amazon for all the books you have purchased from them. You're still able to access those books from your kindle.

I was initially one against the no SD card slot. I've had a 2GB SD card in my Kindle since I got it. I had more than 30 pages of books/samples/documents and 4 CDs of music and still was nowhere near 1.4 GB used. I don't think it was even 1 GB to be honest.

For me, I think the 2GB or 1.4GB that it really is, will be more than enough. Especially with being able to keep so many books on Amazon. And this is coming from someone with a full 32 GB ipod and over 160 GB worth of media on an external hard drive. (I just had to buy a bigger one.)
 

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More than enough memory esp when you consider that your computer can store books, just like an SD card. The battery is another issue -- wish we could change them ourselves. And how about not getting a cover? Sneaky way to add $30 to the cost of K2.
 

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Dedalus said:
More than enough memory esp when you consider that your computer can store books, just like an SD card. The battery is another issue -- wish we could change them ourselves. And how about not getting a cover? Sneaky way to add $30 to the cost of K2.
Yet... how many people detested their original cover and got a new one with the Klassic Kindle? This way you choose your cover and don't get sent one Amazon chooses that ya may want replaced.
 

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CS said:
1
"That's room for 1,500 books," Tritschler said, noting that any book a Kindle user buys is backed up on Amazon's servers -- and is available to the reader at any time. "There's no need for additional storage." ... ... ... Tritschler announced today that the Kindle 2's battery can replaced under warranty for a year. After that, it can be replaced in the Amazon factory for $59.
No need for additional storage? Maybe for him. Not for me.

And $59 to send it to Amazon to have the battery replaced vs. $20 for a battery I replace myself. I know which I prefer.
 

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Dedalus said:
More than enough memory esp when you consider that your computer can store books, just like an SD card. The battery is another issue -- wish we could change them ourselves. And how about not getting a cover? Sneaky way to add $30 to the cost of K2.
Cover: If I could have returned the cover that came with k1, I would have. It was worthless. I'm very happy they didn't include the cover. I have the option of choosing which one to buy. I think Amazon saw the huge market and demand for aftermarket kindles and got fed up with all the complaints they were getting on the cover.

Battery: I'm an ipod user. The battery isn't that big a deal. I had a spare battery for my k1 and used it twice in a year and that was before I bought a car charger. Once I had the car charger, I didn't need it. If it fails, its no worse than the screen going belly up or a button breaking. Plus, you can now charge via a USB port. Another big plus.
 

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Dangerosa said:
Not loving that part. I wonder what the life expectancy of the battery is. I'm worried it's not much longer than a year, given they really seem to be pushing the 2-year extended warranty.
I agree about that. I'm considering the extended warranty for that very reason. One thing I don't like is having to send the Kindle to Amazon to get a new battery. That's what we have to do with K2 if the battery goes out, right?
 

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I'm curious about all the people complaining about the lack of an SD card.  How many of these people have actually filled up their Kindle?

I had 17 pages of books on my K1 and wasn't anywhere near full.  I know a lot of people had/have more than that.  I can't imagine anyone actually needing that many books on the K at one time.  Granted, if you are into music, 2 gig isn't much.  But if you are into music you probably won't be using the Kindle for your listening.

Is it because so many people are used to seeing computers with hundreds of gig of space and they think that's what's needed for everything?
 

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I got to the point where i needed to put some stuff on my SD card.  Right now I have 40mb available on the internal memory and 3.6 gigs available on the SD.

I do think I'll be able to live with 2gig but having been around computers since 1969, you can never have too much storage or memory and what sounds like a lot will in time be laughably small.

Nevertheless.. I ordered K2.
 

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No one thought they would ever fill i gig memory on their computers a few years ago,now a terabyte isn't enough for many.
 

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I agree that the K2 has tried to make improvements.  For me, the lack of an SD slot is a downgrade.  It depends on how you use your Kindle.  If you are the type of person who like to reread books, the ability to have up to 1500 books (without a user defined way of sorting them) would be impossible to manage.  Whispernet is not always available to just re-download something, nor is a computer to transfer it.  I am often doing research on various topics and don't always know exactly what I will need.  I bought the Kindle with the ability to to carry large amounts of information and books with me.  I also got it planning to keep my books with me.  It was supposed to become my "portable library".  It is a change that I wasn't planning on, but will certainly find ways to adjust to when my present Kindle dies.

I also don't consider the battery an improvement in the long run.  I think there will be less problems with the new battery.  But when there is a problem, you have to send your Kindle away to be fixed.  If it ends up functioning like Apple; you might not, or probably won't get your own Kindle back.  Any skins you paid for would be gone.  I may be wrong, but I understand that all of your samples would be gone.  Only your last ten transactions are backed up on Amazon.

Still, I will definitely try to replace my Kindle when it dies.  I love it and use it more than I ever thought I would.
 

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With all my items on the Kindle, I have 22 pages, and it comes very close to filling the available space without the SD card.  I really like the SD card.  I can carry it with my Kindle and have access to lots of books that I got from the free sites, and are not saved within the Amazon servers.
 
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