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Old 07-24-2009, 01:46 PM   #1
wellonheels
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Wireless service

I'm torn between the Sony PRS-505 and the Kindle 2 - I'm really only considering the Kindle because of the wireless access. Not really for book-buying, actually, but for limited web-surfing whenever and wherever, free. Does anyone have any details on using the Kindle's wireless for other than buying/dowloading a book? Is it useful?
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Old 07-24-2009, 01:56 PM   #2
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if you search on this site you will find this has been discussed several times. in short, it is not a satisfactory back up web surfing device.
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Old 07-24-2009, 01:59 PM   #3
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Hi there -- I just answered you in the introduction thread.

To repeat ... the wireless network in the Kindle is biased toward accessing the Amazon store. To use it to visit any other site, you'd want to make sure that their UI was simple. Those that are designed for PDAs and other mobile devices work the best on the Kindle.

I would not consider the Kindle a satisfactory general purpose network appliance. As in many things, your mileage may vary.
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Old 07-24-2009, 04:39 PM   #4
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Agreed. Ok for the mobile NYTimes but not much else.
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Old 07-24-2009, 11:35 PM   #5
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I have used it while on vacation to find a nearby movie theater, find out what was playing and find directions. It worked great for me. BUT, you have to have a lot of patience. The answer is that it can be used and can be very useful in an emergency. However, if you really need wireless access you probably want something better.

Also, there is no guarantee that Amazon won't eventually filter it and/or start to charge for it. They specifically advertise free wikipedia access, so that will probably continue. Any other stuff -- who knows.
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Old 07-25-2009, 10:13 AM   #6
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Sony has just discontinued the PRS-700 and appears to be drawing down stocks of the PRS-505, see Sony Removed PRS-700 AND 505 !. So probably they will soon be introducing new models, and there have been rumors of "wireless" on an upcoming Sony Reader.

The Kindle 2 is a good choice if you don't expect too much from its web browser. I can't recommend the PRS-505 today, because its replacement from Sony is likely to be significantly better.
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Old 07-25-2009, 01:47 PM   #7
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Web surfing on a small screen can be frustrating. Add the slow refresh rate of eInk and it makes it pretty annoying. I'd rather surf on my smartphone. If it's a mobile site, that should be fine like others said. Wikipedia search works really well and is nicely formatted.

When I first bought the Kindle, the deciding factors were content search, dictionary lookup and annotation. Sony 505 has none of these. The 700 now has search and annotation but still no dictionary support. It wasn't out when I was looking. The Amazon store was also a big plus. I didn't think I'd be using the wireless aside from the occasional web or Wikipedia search with eInk being as slow as it is. I figured it was for tech-phobic folks who were intimidated with the idea of loading content via USB. Once I started using the Kindle, I realized what was really brilliant about Whispernet.

It's not so much being able to shop from the device. That works well in a pinch but shopping from my computer is easier. It's faster. I have a mouse and a regular keyboard. I rarely shop from the Kindle. The nifty thing for me is being able to send myself the free samples with one click on my computer and then buying the book with one click from the device if I decide I like it. When I see a book I think I may be interested in, I send the sample. The next time I turn on the wireless, it'll be there. I don't think about whether or not I'll really want it. I don't spend time while I'm shopping trying to read a few paragraphs and decide from that little bit whether it's worth my time and money. I used to do that in the book store and was frequently wrong. Now I get about a chapter of the book, sometimes more. I can read it on my Kindle when I feel like it. At the end of the sample there's a link to buy it. I click on the link and in less than a minute I have the book. I could be at the park or on the train or just ensconced in my comfy chair with a cat and a cup of tea and there's my book. I don't have to try to guess what I'll be in the mood for next. Sometimes I read a sample but it's not what I feel like now but I end up reading it later and getting the book. I've also read a lot of samples and not bought the book at all. Back in my paper days, I would have because I generally bought several books at a time trying to have enough to tide me over. If it looked interesting, I bought it but I often ended up with books I didn't like enough to finish. I've finished every book I've bought with the Kindle. This feature saves me a good deal of money. Plus I get to read what I want when I want.
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Old 07-25-2009, 02:17 PM   #8
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I find it sufficient for wikipedia and generally googling for information. I've used it to look up telephone numbers, and things like library hours, while I was away from home. As others say, in a pinch it's not too bad but not something you'd want to use a lot really.
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