View Full Version : Kindle owners -- Is Kindle less fragile than Sony Reader?


ericastillwell
11-25-2007, 04:49 PM
Sorry if this has been covered elsewhere (I couldn't find it), but I'm curious if the Kindle is sturdier than the Reader. I'm a bit of a clutz and have broken a Reader screen twice (thank goodness I got the accidental damage handling on my second one!), so now I'm looking at the Kindle which LOOKS a lot sturdier. Plus, Amazon has such good customer service that they may be much nicer about screen issues...

-Erica

Nate the great
11-25-2007, 08:55 PM
I'd say the kindle is more fragile because it is easier to break off on of the buttons that wrap the edge.

brecklundin
11-26-2007, 12:41 AM
did you watch the 30" drop video on Amazon's Kindle page? I am kinda sold it's tough...

HarryT
11-26-2007, 03:22 AM
All eInks screen have a thin glass substrate beneath the plastic screen, and do need to be treated with a moderate amount of care. A simple drop generally does no harm - what will break the screen is applying severe pressure to a single point on the screen.

rflashman
11-26-2007, 05:17 AM
It feels less sturdy than the Sony Reader, but only long term use will tell.

NatCh
11-26-2007, 12:21 PM
did you watch the 30" drop video on Amazon's Kindle page? I am kinda sold it's tough...:shrug: I've dropped my PRS500, twice, :zoiks: from about 4 feet onto tile floors, it's still ticking. There's an account in the forum of someone losing his off the top of his car at 25 mph, and it surviving with mostly cosmetic damage. It depends a lot on how they hit. I suspect that there are ways to drop a Kindle, or any of these devices for that matter, from as little as 12 inches and totally disable them, but they're probably very specific ways. :nice:

ericastillwell
11-26-2007, 07:08 PM
It depends a lot on how they hit. I suspect that there are ways to drop a Kindle, or any of these devices for that matter, from as little as 12 inches and totally disable them, but they're probably very specific ways. :nice:

I guess I managed those specific ways... Actually, I'm very annoyed about the first one that broke--I had it in my backpack while traveling and judging by the way the cracks radiate out, the stupid star-shaped thing holding the cover on to the reader got pressed in and broke the screen. The second time, it looks like I dropped it right on a corner (the screen is only not working in that corner).

Anyone hear anything about Amazon's kindle screen policy? I went ahead and ordered mine yesterday--the wireless downloads and subscriptions are the clincher for me.

-Erica

Zoot
11-26-2007, 09:18 PM
I would classify both my Sony 500 and Kindle in the same category of "fragile electronic device" and wouldn't want to drop or whack either one against something hard or pointy. I don't really feel a need to be more gentile with the Kindle, but then I tend to take very good care of things to begin with.

I don't think the Kindle is any more strudy than the Sony though. It's probably identical with respect to the screen, and may have potential issues with the buttons breaking off in the case of trauma to the unit (nobody has reported any such problem yet that I've seen).

Z.

dkb
03-02-2008, 10:42 PM
Sorry if this has been covered elsewhere (I couldn't find it), but I'm curious if the Kindle is sturdier than the Reader. I'm a bit of a clutz and have broken a Reader screen twice (thank goodness I got the accidental damage handling on my second one!), so now I'm looking at the Kindle which LOOKS a lot sturdier. Plus, Amazon has such good customer service that they may be much nicer about screen issues...

-Erica

I accidentally dropped my Kindle on a natural stone floor and it still works, and has no discernible damage. It didn't land on the screen--I think it landed on one of the corners--it wasn't in the cover at the time I dropped it.

Alisa
03-03-2008, 04:23 AM
I don't think any of us really have enough experience with both to judge and I've never seen a head-to-head testing of durability. It would be an expensive test. There are people on the board that own both but I think they try to be cautious with them. I'm with Harry on this one. The screen is the same on both of them and it's the weak spot. The Kindle case may offer superior protection from some injuries, the Sony, Cybook, etc. cases from others. In general their aren't many gadgets out there of any ilk that can take real abuse.

Lima_dat
03-03-2008, 09:31 AM
It's a fragile device and needs to be handled with care. It should be treated as a thin piece of glass. IMO
It will probably survive a drop, but don't put it in any situation where the screen might possibly have pressure applied to it. I've already broken the screen on my kindle, and I have been EXTRA careful with the replacement.

wallcraft
03-03-2008, 10:14 AM
I've already broken the screen on my kindle, and I have been EXTRA careful with the replacement. Did Amazon replace it free of charge? Note that iRex typically charges to replace a broken iLiad screen, I don't know what Sony's policy is.

KlondikeGeoff
03-03-2008, 10:33 AM
It's a fragile device and needs to be handled with care. It should be treated as a thin piece of glass.

Excellent advice! You guys have got to stop flinging your Kindles all over the place. :D

Lima_dat
03-03-2008, 10:51 AM
Did Amazon replace it free of charge? Note that iRex typically charges to replace a broken iLiad screen, I don't know what Sony's policy is.

Yes, Amazon replaced it for the price of... on da house.

heb
03-10-2008, 01:12 PM
My Sony reader has now taken a substantial amount of abuse!

Its been dropped several time, been covered in orange juice which made some of the buttons a bit sticky and my 2 year old son has stood on the screen.

Not sure if I am just lucky but I'm getting to the point where I just treat it as an every day object and not something fragile and delicate.

Gideon
03-10-2008, 01:14 PM
It seems more sturdy then the Sony Reader, but... I wouldn't know for certain.

Crisandria
04-25-2008, 01:50 PM
I've got both a sony reader and just got a amazon kindle last week. I've dropped the sony a few times just on the rug and it held up fine, but I did drop it outside once onto brick (just tumbled out of my hand) screen side down. and it cracked the screen and stopped working.

I've just managed to drop my kindle screen side down onto the floor at work (not carpeted) twice. It slipped out of the cover and when trying to get it back into the cover it slipped again. the back came off and the pannel with the keyboard was a little off. I snapped everything back together and other than a crack just above the keyboard it seems fine. Everything is working fine.

While I know the floor is not as hard a the bricks. I think the kindle is pretty sturdy so far. (just can't believe I've only had it a week and already dropped it!)

crisandria

astra
04-25-2008, 02:13 PM
I've got both a sony reader and just got a amazon kindle last week. I've dropped the sony a few times just on the rug and it held up fine, but I did drop it outside once onto brick (just tumbled out of my hand) screen side down.

I've just managed to drop my kindle screen side down onto the floor at work (not carpeted) twice. It slipped out of the cover and when trying to get it back into the cover it slipped again. the back came off and the pannel with the keyboard was a little off. crisandria

Dear Chrisandria, if by some bizzare chance we ever meet, please be so kind as to remind not to land you my fragile Sony Reader!

MoSo
04-25-2008, 05:05 PM
I've seen a few reports of problems with the Kindle's large "page forward" bars. If you use the large one on the right exclusively, and press only on the very lowest corner, it can warp the edge of the bar down so that it doesn't work.

I've only seen a couple comments about this, and I don't know if the problem is an injection molding problem, a "user pushing too hard" problem or just a general design problem. It does mean I make sure to press the bar in the middle, but then I'm a tall woman with big hands and very long fingers, so it's not really a problem for me. (Yet.)

Shenzhov
04-25-2008, 07:02 PM
I've had a Sony 505 for a bit over 3 months and just got my Kindle yesterday.
I'm in agreement with everyone on the fact you would not want to drop either one of the devices. The Kindle is plastic and the 505 has a metal case, but the Kindle seems a bit stouter if you know what I mean. As has been said, it would depend on how it landed I think. I have an iPhone I dropped several times and it hit the rug on the floor with no damage. I handed it to a friend and it fell, hit the fireplace mantel and exploded. So, depends on how it lands as I said.

I love the Kindle so far, much more than the 505 and as you stated the wireless is the clincher for me. The 505 feels so disconnected now and I don't think I'll be using it much anymore. I'm betting from what you've said, you will love the Kindle. Let us know when you get it.

puddinpaws
06-14-2008, 05:47 PM
My Kindle of 2 months just feel out of the case and hit the floor and no external damage but will not work now. Wonder if I should get a Sony now.

daffy4u
06-14-2008, 06:17 PM
My Kindle of 2 months just feel out of the case and hit the floor and no external damage but will not work now. Wonder if I should get a Sony now.

You should take advantage of the 1 year warranty and contact Amazon for repair or replacement. Once it's repaired or replaced, use a little bit of velcro to attached the Kindle to it's case, that puppy won't go anywhere without major assistance.

RickyMaveety
06-14-2008, 06:17 PM
I dropped my Kindle (it was in the case, but apparently no securely in the case and slipped out) on the second day I had it.

It hit the stone floor, bounced, and landed screen side down. No damage I could see and it is still working fine.

However, this reinforced my dislike of the case that comes with the Kindle.

Elsi
06-14-2008, 06:22 PM
I've seen a few reports of problems with the Kindle's large "page forward" bars. If you use the large one on the right exclusively, and press only on the very lowest corner, it can warp the edge of the bar down so that it doesn't work.

I've only seen a couple comments about this, and I don't know if the problem is an injection molding problem, a "user pushing too hard" problem or just a general design problem. It does mean I make sure to press the bar in the middle, but then I'm a tall woman with big hands and very long fingers, so it's not really a problem for me. (Yet.) If you look carefully at the "Next Page" bar on the right side and play with it a bit -- even turn it over and examine it from the bottom -- you'll see that it's designed to slide to the right rather than compress down. If you sort of "push" it to the right rather than depressing it, you get better results and avoid warping the right bottom corner.

My Kindle of 2 months just feel out of the case and hit the floor and no external damage but will not work now. Wonder if I should get a Sony now. You should take advantage of the 1 year warranty and contact Amazon for repair or replacement. Once it's repaired or replaced, use a little bit of velcro to attached the Kindle to it's case, it won't go anywhere without major assistance. Try reseating the battery and then press the reset button on the bottom.

daffy4u
06-14-2008, 06:35 PM
I see the nesting of quotes is working but it looks like you're replying to me Elsi and not puddinpaws.

Elsi
06-14-2008, 09:19 PM
I see the nesting of quotes is working but it looks like you're replying to me Elsi and not puddinpaws. Actually, I was replying to you. I just worded my response poorly. I wanted to affirm your suggestion to contact Amazon about the warranty -- but first, try the reset actions to see if that would wake up the Kindle. I should have said, First try reseating ...

My Kindle was totally unresponsive when I took it out of my backpack a week or so ago. I was panicked and just sure that it was dead as a doornail. First I turned off the power switch (having left the Kindle simply in stand-by mode), and then I took the back off & removed the SD card. It still wouldn't power on, so I used a pin to push the reset button. This time the Kindle responded and all was well.

Since puddinpaws had dropped the Kindle, I figured that reseating the battery might be a good idea as well.

Then, if nothing else works, contact Amazon. After all, they have that lovely video on the Kindle home page showing how sturdy it is and how dropping it didn't break it.

JSWolf
06-24-2008, 04:08 PM
If the Kindle was to break out of warranty, can it be repaired or do you have to call it a wash?

daffy4u
06-24-2008, 05:47 PM
None of them are out of warranty yet (as far as I know). I'm sure they can be repaired depending on the damage but I couldn't guess at the cost.

HarryT
06-25-2008, 02:14 PM
If the Kindle was to break out of warranty, can it be repaired or do you have to call it a wash?

There was a chap here a while ago who dropped his Kindle out of his car, and Amazon told him that it wouldn't be a warranty repair (which is reasonable enough), and that they didn't offer a repair service for non-warranty repairs, which I found very surprising. They are the only eInk device manufacturer not to offer repairs; that would, I must admit, make me think twice about buying one.

daffy4u
06-25-2008, 02:25 PM
I've just sent an email to Amazon CS to ask about repairs after the warranty period is up. If they won't do paid repairs, that would be a bad thing. Maybe a repair market or insurance market will open up to take the sting out of replacement.

I'll post when I hear back from them.

daffy4u
06-25-2008, 05:56 PM
Here is my communication with Amazon and their reply.

I wrote:
This is just a question, I am not having any problems with my Kindle.

There is a conversation happening on a message board I'm a member of. There seems to be a belief that once a Kindle is out of the 1 year warranty period, no repairs will be made, even if paid for by the Kindle owner. Is this true?

Amazon says:
Hello from Amazon.com.

Thank you for writing us to inquire about how the Amazon Kindle would be serviced after the one-year warranty period is over.

As you know, your Kindle is covered by a limited one-year parts and labor warranty. If you experience a performance issue with the device after the one-year warranty is over, please contact us for hardware support by calling one of the numbers below:

Inside the United States: 1-866-321-8851
Outside the United States: 1-206-266-0927

If we determine that your device needs service, we'll provide you with further information about getting your Kindle repaired.

Information about the warranty for your Kindle can be found in the paper insert that came with your Kindle, the Kindle User's Guide, or on our Help pages at this URL:

http://www.amazon.com/kindlesupport

I hope you found this information useful. Our goal is to help you get the most out of your Kindle experience.

Thank you for choosing Kindle.

scotty1024
06-28-2008, 04:06 AM
My PRS-505 experienced death by Airborne, the herbal remedy "Invented by a school teacher". I spilled a glass of it on the 505 and while the unit survived the battery's chemistry was neutralized (most likely by the calcium carbonate from the drink) and now it no longer holds a charge.

Since the battery isn't user replaceable I've put it in the museum next to my Libre (which suffers from a broken battery compartment) and my iLiad (which suffers from incredibly poor design and corporate ethics).

The Kindle has a user replaceable battery so you can self repair it from this kind of damage.

I recently bought a Segway and my Kindle pulled the scare the owner into thinking its dead trick. Which was doubly convincing for me since I figured I'd killed it riding the rough sidewalks around here. What I add to the otherwise complete Kindle recovery advice given above is: make sure the unit is charged.

The 505 and Kindle both appear dead as a door nail with no gas in the tank. :)

By the way, the Segway was indeed the culprit. Seems the Kindle's battery can be quickly run flat by pressing the buttons, when its in alt-aA mode. I now keep my Kindle switched off in the Segway's handle bar bag's zipped net pouch and all has been fine since.

And for those with "buttery fingers" I've found its generally harder to drop the Kindle or knock it off tables because of that big pad of high friction rubber on the back.

If you had visions of it landing rubber side down for a softer landing? I can report from personal experience that Murphy, or physics, seem to dictate a screen side down landing. I've had it fall twice from 36" onto a hard tiled concrete floor and pull through both times. And as I mentioned, it rides everywhere on my Segway, which is a hard ride at times.

If the rumors are true about who builds the Kindle for Amazon... Lenovo/IBM... that firm has near legendary status for building durable hard to kill portable equipment.

daffy4u
07-06-2008, 02:12 PM
By the way, the Segway was indeed the culprit. Seems the Kindle's battery can be quickly run flat by pressing the buttons, when its in alt-aA mode. I now keep my Kindle switched off in the Segway's handle bar bag's zipped net pouch and all has been fine since.


Are you riding around without a cover for your Kindle (the original or other cover)? I think that would help protect from accidental button pushes.

I'm jealous over your Segway. There's a Segway store near me but I can justify buying one even though they are fun to ride.

Nickfdr
02-12-2009, 05:52 PM
I am guessing that the kindle 2 will still be more fragile than sony readers but I dont really want to test.

lilac_jive
02-12-2009, 05:54 PM
I'll just say that I dropped my Sony Reader 505 on asphalt, and it survived with a chip on the corner. But it probably helped that it fell on a corner.

Tempvs
06-18-2009, 06:36 AM
http://img.over-blog.com/2/77/40/82/Cosas-mias/Cosas-mias_2143.jpg

I'm think the hook to attach a strap in the 505 is a good idea :thumbsup: but Kindle2 haven't got it. :( and it's very easy drop it because their texture is very soft.

doreenjoy
06-18-2009, 02:03 PM
I've had both. One of the reasons I returned the Kindle was because it seemed more fragile to me.

kevindorsey
06-18-2009, 04:16 PM
Sony should be more durable, for sure.

unrequited
06-18-2009, 05:07 PM
For those interested, here is the mentioned drop test video:
http://www.amazon.com/gp/mpd/permalink/m29AN24ZT4S6UX

pboss
06-18-2009, 06:31 PM
Lol that was pain to watch! My Sony505 looks and feels more sturdy, but the Kindle may be more flexible for impact pulse.

fugazied
06-18-2009, 07:27 PM
I agree, with the Kindle button placement making it more likely to get bumped and easily damaged. I've only briefly handled the sony but it does seem more chunky and strong.
But in the end it comes down to how you look after things, the biggest enemy to these devices BY FAR is water, and that's far more likely to kill one (like my poor ipod touch RIP).