Monday, March 7, 2011

Have just bought a Kindle

My last excuse for indulgence before Lent: I have just received my new Kindle from Amazon. It was while I was looking for Pope Benedict's Jesus of Nazarareth Part II that I decided to go kindle as this book is available on kindle for $9.99 as opposed to $14.52 for the hardcover version.

It's the 3G Wireless version which means that, in theory, I can order books from anywhere and they will automatically download onto my Kindle via the worldwide 3G network. That is, if there is a 3G network. And if there isn't a 3G network, it will use the slower speed EDGE/GPRS system. And if that doesn't exist, it will work via any wi-fi system. So if you go to Starbucks, for example, where there is free wi-fi, you can download books free.

To my surprise, 3G coverage is rather sparse in the USA:
There is none around here in Marquette:
although the map does seem to indicate we have the EDGE/GPRS system. But my Kindle detects neither 3G nor EDGE/GPRS, relying on the wi-fi internet connection I installed here at the Cathedral.

So where will I likely gain access to the 3G system? It would seem the Europe is far better off for 3G than the USA, but then Europe is far more densely populated:

So, if you are in the USA and you live somewhere like the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, 3G is not really necessary, unless you plan to travel. I'm sure, however, I will not have regretted the extra $50 just to have the more upgraded version. It certainly seems a remarkable piece of equipment.

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