Originally Posted by MacEachaidh
If you don't mind, I'll ask a couple of questions about other features on the Kindle.
1) What's the OS like to work within? Are menus etc responsive and well laid out?
The user interface is well thought out, but a little minimalist compared to iRiver. In a way, it makes it easier for complete new comers to use it right away.
The book list itself can be sorted in 3 ways, based on last read, title, or author. I do miss iRiver's ability to access the ebooks via folders. With Kindle, you'd need to group the books within kindle itself via something called Collections. I think iRiver (and my jetbook) has an edge here. It's a lot easier to locate books based on file folders. Another feature that iRiver has but Kindle doesn't is the 'Favorites' feature.
I think Amazon is trying to integrate Kindle with its online database. I can't sort the books using the 'Collections' feature (it's grayed out) until I register the product with Amazon, via the built-in wireless. Since Amazon doesn't sell this product to my location, I wonder if I could register it.
Kindle has another strength over iRiver: it is able to show you the FULL ebook name, if the book name is longish. Just hover the cursor over the file name and the full name appears.
Note-taking and clipping texts from an ebook are functional and highly usable. The notes are saved and linked to the specific book pages. This is unlike the iRiver, where the Notes feature feels a lot like an afterthought. Everything about Kindle is integrated, including the dictionary and text-to-speech thing.
Another thing: iRiver's page-turn buttons on the sides are kinda loud when you click on it. Kindle's buttons are almost soundless and easier to click.
My take is that Kindle is a product that has benefited from feedback from a very large, and very vocal customer base. On top of that, I think Amazon do listen to what the customers have to say.
2) What are the inbuilt fonts and display font size choices like? Can you install custom fonts for use in eBooks?
There are about 8 font sizes, but really, some sizes are not usable (too small, too large). And there is quite a big jump of size from No 4 to No 5. The change in font sizes isn't as gradual as I'd like it to be.
It has only 2 types of font, the regular and sans-serif; right now, no custom font can be added. The display can be customized in several ways - you can change the line-spacing and so on.
3) Am I correct in my understanding that it doesn't allow memory expansion?
Yep. But 4 GB is plenty.
I think Amazon intend the Kindle to be used in conjunction with their online system. SD cards can complicate matters.
4) Does it support features like hyperlinks (esp. ToC and Index) and footnotes? (The eBook format specs do, but it seems most hardware/firmware currently don't, from what I've read, except those that use a stylus.)
Yes, Kindle works very well with hyperlinks. Just use the directional pad to access the links, and click!
Hmm, well, now my curiosity is definitely pricked. Where do you live? :)
I live in Singapore.. It's a place where you find chilly crabs and other spicy tropical foods, but it's a desert where ebook readers are concerned. We can't order readers from Borders, B&N, Amazon, Sony.