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The best Kindle for 2023: Every Amazon e-reader reviewed and ranked

Unless you really, really hate Amazon, there's no reason to look at other types of e-readers.
The best Kindle for 2023: Every Amazon e-reader reviewed and ranked Credit: Amazon / Mashable Photo Composite

Best on a budget
The OG Kindle provides a frills-free experience for budget-minded consumers.
Pros & Cons
The Good
Compact size Most lightweight Kindle Best of the basics Generous storage space Newly updated
The Bad
Cover sold separately Not waterproof No warm light
The Bottomline
If you're looking for a basic Kindle experience without any frills, this compact and lightweight e-reader is the perfect fit.
Best for reading outside
The Kindle Paperwhite adds waterproof protection and warm light to the list of features that help you enjoy reading in even more settings.
Pros & Cons
The Good
Two storage size options Warm light adjusts from white to amber 20% faster page turns Stunning battery life Fully waterproof
The Bad
Display won't auto-adjust to surroundings Cover sold separately Older model Kindle
The Bottomline
If you plan to use your Kindle around water — whether in the bath or by the pool — the Kindle Paperwhite is worth the higher price for your peace of mind.
Best Kindle overall
After testing every Kindle for ourselves, we believe this is the best Kindle all-around. Thanks to a mid-range price and a nice set of features, it makes indoor and outdoor reading a breeze.
Pros & Cons
The Good
Auto-adjusting light Wireless charging Waterproof protection Fantastic battery life No lockscreen ads
The Bad
Super-sized storage may be overkill Double the price of entry-level Kindle Cover sold separately
The Bottomline
The Kindle Paperwhite Signature Edition offers enough enhancements to make it feel like a luxurious upgrade without piling on features you may never use.
Best for taking notes
Unlike any other e-reader in the Kindle lineup, the Kindle Scribe lets you write and read.
Pros & Cons
The Good
Big, glare-free display Ability to take notes Pen never needs charging Lots of storage The brightest Kindle
The Bad
Cover sold separately Not waterproof Expensive
The Bottomline
Whether taking notes for class or a new hobby you're studying, or just making commentary to revisit in a favorite novel, the Amazon Kindle Scribe makes an awesome all-in-one companion.
Best budget option for kids
An e-reader built specifically for kids ages seven and up. Establish healthy reading habits without the distractions of apps, games, and Youtube.
Pros & Cons
The Good
1 year of Kids+ Worry-free guarantee Choice of cover included Reasonable price
The Bad
Not waterproof Black-and-white interface
The Bottomline
The Kindle Kids model may be best suited for older children who don't necessarily need the security of waterproof protection.
Best for kids
The Kindle Paperwhite Kids has all the best features of the Amazon Kindle Kids edition but with waterproof protection and a larger display.
Pros & Cons
The Good
Waterproof Adjustable warm light Worry-free guarantee 1 year of Kids+ Choice of cover included
The Bad
Black-and-white interface
The Bottomline
The waterproof protection of the Amazon Kindle Paperwhite Kids makes it a safe choice for younger children, though they may be bored by the colorless interface (in which case the Amazon Fire HD 10 Kids tablet might be preferred).

UPDATE: Jul. 7, 2024, 5:00 AM EDT This article was updated in July 2024 ahead of Amazon's Prime Day, which is coming July 16 and 17. It reflects the current Kindle lineup after the Kindle Oasis was discontinued earlier this year.

If you're searching for the best Kindle to buy in 2024, you're spoiled for choice. Amazon now makes a Kindle for every type of reader (including the cute yet highly functional Kindle Kids edition).?

If you haven't yet been converted to the lovely world of Amazon Kindle readers, we have to ask, frankly: What the heck are you waiting for?

And now is the time to buy. With Amazon Prime Day 2024 coming July 16 and 17, the mega-retailer always discounts its own products, which includes Kindles. We're already seeing deals on bestsellers and Kindle e-books, so there's no doubt we'll see Kindle devices on sale, too. During past Amazon sales, we've seen Kindle deals with savings up to $90, so pause before paying full-price.

We know nothing compares to the feel of a book in your hands as you thumb through page after enticing page. Yet, even if you're a ride-or-die bibliophile whose favorite smell is that of a bookstore (guilty), Kindles have undeniable benefits. You no longer have to pack 10 different books when going on vacation because you never know which book will suit your mood at any given time. You can also read poolside or at the beach without worrying about damaging your precious literature.

As of July 2024, Amazon makes six different Kindles, after the Kindle Oasis was recently discontinued. The current lineup has a vast variety of features and includes a new generation of Amazon e-readers released in 2022 as well as some older models still worth buying. We've gathered our favorites below along with highlights from our Kindle reviews, so read on to find the right model for your reading pleasure.

Testing the auto-adjustment feature on the Kindle Paperwhite Signature Edition.
Credit: Stan Schroeder/Mashable

What should I look for in the best Kindles?

When shopping for a new Kindle, consider the following factors:

  • Display size. The smallest Kindle has a 6-inch display while the largest has a 10.2-inch display.
  • Storage capacity. Depending on the model, Kindles can have anywhere from 8 GB to 64 GB of storage capacity to stash many thousands of your favorite reads at a time.
  • Battery life. Kindles generally have outstanding battery life (depending on your usage), but some models are even more impressive. On the low end, they last up to six weeks per charge, while others last up to 12 weeks.
  • Waterproof protection. Not all Kindles are waterproof, but those that are provide peace of mind in case of accidental immersion in water without incurring damage.

Beyond those variable factors, all the latest Kindles boast a 300 ppi, high-resolution display with zero glare so you can enjoy sharp text and images at any viewing angle. All Kindles are also equipped with WiFi connectivity to allow you to access and download all the reading material you could ever want. (However, select Kindle readers also allow for free cellular connectivity so you have more options.) All Kindles offer parental control options as well, whether or not you've purchased a Kindle device specifically made for kids. Plus, you can listen to audiobooks on Audible via any Kindle's built-in Bluetooth connection.

What features do Kindles offer?

Beyond the aforementioned standard features that are found across most (if not all) of the latest Kindle models, there are also specialized features that you'll find on the higher-end models. To pick the right Kindle for your lifestyle, you'll want to consider your particular needs and preferences as you shop.?

The Kindle Scribe is the only Kindle e-reader that comes with its own stylus for note-taking.
Credit: Molly Flores/Mashable

Perhaps you like to read outside often; you'll want a Kindle with an auto-adjusting light so you don't have to worry about constantly fixing the brightness for optimal viewing in your current environment. The Kindle Paperwhite Signature Edition and Kindle Scribe all have this auto-adjustment feature.

Or, maybe you like to read before bed and want to cut out blue light that tends to keep us awake and alert; you'll need a Kindle that has an adjustable warm light feature so you can shift the display color from white to amber. After the 2022 release of the Kindle Scribe, there's even a Kindle that will allow you to jot down notes on your texts for later reference.

Kindle (2022 release)

Best on a budget

The good
Compact size Most lightweight Kindle Best of the basics Generous storage space Newly updated
The Bad
Cover sold separately Not waterproof No warm light
The Bottomline
If you're looking for a basic Kindle experience without any frills, this compact and lightweight e-reader is the perfect fit.
Specs
  • Battery Life: Up to 6 weeks
  • Display size: 6 inches
  • Storage: 16 GB
  • Waterproof: No

Read our full review of the Kindle (2022 release).

If you're just jumping into the world of Kindles and don't need any extra bells and whistles, then the baseline Kindle is the best, most budget-friendly choice. The all-new Kindle got an overdue upgrade in 2022, and in Mashable's recent Kindle review, it received top marks for performance and user-friendliness.

It's lightweight and compact so you can easily slip it into a bag or backpack and take it on the go. It has a glare-free, 6-inch display and boasts 16 GB of storage — that's twice as much as previous versions — so you can keep thousands of books at your side at any given time. This Kindle also has an adjustable front light for easier reading in bright light conditions, as well as a dark mode for a more comfortable reading experience at night. Plus, a full charge via USB-C cable gives the Kindle up to six weeks of life.

What's missing with the entry-level Kindle? Quite a bit, unfortunately, although nothing that's essential for a good reading experience. The basic Kindle lacks advanced features like the ability to take notes. You'll also have to live without wireless charging, adjustable warm light, and an auto-adjusting screen. The biggest downgrade is the lack of waterproofing, so be careful to keep this Amazon e-reader away from the water.

You can choose to opt into three free months of Kindle Unlimited at no extra charge, and you can select the "Without Lockscreen Ads” option for just $20 more.

Kindle Paperwhite

Best for reading outside

The good
Two storage size options Warm light adjusts from white to amber 20% faster page turns Stunning battery life Fully waterproof
The Bad
Display won't auto-adjust to surroundings Cover sold separately Older model Kindle
The Bottomline
If you plan to use your Kindle around water — whether in the bath or by the pool — the Kindle Paperwhite is worth the higher price for your peace of mind.
Specs
  • Battery Life: Up to 10 weeks
  • Display size: 6.8 inches
  • Storage: 8 GB and 16 GB options
  • Waterproof?: Yes

Read our full review of the Kindle Paperwhite.

Though it boasts a larger display than the standard Kindle — 6.8 inches vs. 6 inches — the Kindle Paperwhite still manages to be the perfect size and weight for comfortable handheld reading. As our reviewer Alex Perry puts it, the Paperwhite is "just heavy enough to not feel cheap and flimsy, without being a hindrance on the one-handed readers among us."

The Kindle Paperwhite adds a few key features that make it a nice upgrade over the base model. It adds more than a dozen LEDs to its front light for easier reading in bright settings, plus IPX8 waterproof protection so it can withstand accidental immersion (while lounging in the bath, for example). The Paperwhite also adds an adjustable warm light that makes it easier on the eyes when you're winding down with a good read before bed.?

Similar to the OG Kindle, you can choose to get three free months of Kindle Unlimited at no extra charge, and you can banish lockscreen ads for an additional $20. You also have the option of upgrading the storage capacity from 8 GB to 16 GB for about $10 more.

Overall, we recommend the newer Kindle Paperwhite Signature Edition over this older model, but if you don't need extra storage space or wireless charging, you can opt for the still-excellent Kindle Paperwhite and save $50.

The good
Auto-adjusting light Wireless charging Waterproof protection Fantastic battery life No lockscreen ads
The Bad
Super-sized storage may be overkill Double the price of entry-level Kindle Cover sold separately
The Bottomline
The Kindle Paperwhite Signature Edition offers enough enhancements to make it feel like a luxurious upgrade without piling on features you may never use.
Specs
  • Battery Life: Up to 10 weeks
  • Display size: 6.8 inches
  • Storage: 32 GB
  • Waterproof?: Yes

Read our full review of the Kindle Paperwhite Signature Edition.

Building upon the already great Kindle Paperwhite, the Signature Edition (SE) is our top pick for the best Kindle for 2024. After hands-on testing the new entry-level Kindle as well as the most advanced model yet, the Kindle Scribe, we believe the Kindle Paperwhite SE has the best balance of features at a reasonable price.

Like the original Kindle Paperwhite, it has a 6.8-inch glare-free display with adjustable warm light. It also offers the same IPX8 waterproof rating so you can enjoy your “beach reads” poolside without any worries. The SE offers four worthwhile upgrades over the original — 32 GB of storage space, no lockscreen ads, automatically adjusting lights, and wireless charging. In fact, it's currently the only Kindle that boasts wireless charging, although thanks to a great battery life, you may only need to do that once every other month or so.

The automatically adjusting front light means that you don't have to worry about manually adjusting the screen for optimal reading when you go from indoors to outdoors and back again — a small but critical feature for someone who reads anywhere and everywhere, all in one day. Like the other Kindle models, you can opt into three free months of Kindle Unlimited with your purchase.

In his review, Mashable senior Editor Stan Schroeder found only one extremely minor quibble — the power button on the bottom can be pressed accidentally. Otherwise, it's a near-perfect e-reader. The 32 GB of storage may be overkill for the average reader, but it's a convenient feature if you listen to audiobooks. For readers on a budget, we recommend going with the Kindle (2022 release), but otherwise, this is our top pick among Amazon e-readers.

Kindle Scribe

Best for taking notes

The good
Big, glare-free display Ability to take notes Pen never needs charging Lots of storage The brightest Kindle
The Bad
Cover sold separately Not waterproof Expensive
The Bottomline
Whether taking notes for class or a new hobby you're studying, or just making commentary to revisit in a favorite novel, the Amazon Kindle Scribe makes an awesome all-in-one companion.
Specs
  • Battery Life: Up to 12 weeks for reading only, or 3 weeks when writing
  • Display size: 10.2 inches
  • Storage: 16 GB, 32 GB, and 64 GB options
  • Waterproof?: No

Read our full review of the Kindle Scribe.

If you haven't been able to get on board with e-readers because you like to jot down notes in the margins of your books, the Amazon Kindle Scribe just might convert you. For supported books and imported files, it allows you to add digital "sticky notes" that you handwrite with the included battery-free pen. With a 10.2-inch display (and the brightest display of all Kindles), it also acts as a notebook and a journal thanks to included templates like blank pages, lined paper, to-do lists, and more.

That size (and corresponding weight), however, can cause some issues according to Mashable reviewer Alex Perry: “When held with two hands, it’s not a problem, but I could see it causing minor wrist strain for some people if they try to hold it with one hand for an extended period of time.” While the ability to use the Kindle for note-taking will be a dream come true for some folks, it might not be enough to justify the cost. For a similar price, you could get a full-fledged tablet from Apple or Samsung, which lets you take notes and read books — on top of a whole lot more.

The Amazon Kindle Scribe also boasts the elevated features of other higher-end Kindles: adjustable warm light, auto-adjusting front light, and automatic rotating page orientation (but no wireless charging). You get to choose from three different storage capacities from 16 GB to 64 GB, and you can also opt into three free months of Kindle Unlimited.

So, is the Kindle Scribe worth it? For folks who can't stop themselves from doodling in the margins, absolutely. For everyone else, stick with one of Amazon's other e-readers.

All-new Kindle Kids (2022 release)

Best budget option for kids

The good
1 year of Kids+ Worry-free guarantee Choice of cover included Reasonable price
The Bad
Not waterproof Black-and-white interface
The Bottomline
The Kindle Kids model may be best suited for older children who don't necessarily need the security of waterproof protection.
Specs
  • Battery Life: Up to 6 weeks
  • Display size: 6 inches
  • Storage: 16 GB
  • Waterproof?: No

The new Kindle Kids model essentially has everything the baseline Kindle has, but with a few key benefits. It has the same 6-inch, glare-free display with 300 ppi for sharp resolution. It also has an adjustable front light and dark mode to ensure kids' comfort while reading, both day and night.

It really stands out when it comes to kid-friendly extras, including one year of unlimited access to thousands of ad-free books with Amazon Kids+ (which would normally cost you at least $4.99 per month). Kids+ also includes a Vocabulary Builder where children can look up definitions and gain familiarity with previously unknown words.?

Bonus: The Kindle Kids comes with three cutesy cover choices and a two-year worry-free guarantee that states Amazon will replace the device — for free — if it breaks. However, you're missing two key features compared to the Kindle Kids Paperwhite: No waterproofing and no adjustable warm light. So, if you're looking for the best Kindle for sleep, we recommend spending a little more on the Paperwhite version.

For young readers used to reading on screens, it's a smart purchase and a product that often goes on sale during events like Black Friday and Prime Day.

Kindle Paperwhite Kids

Best for kids

The good
Waterproof Adjustable warm light Worry-free guarantee 1 year of Kids+ Choice of cover included
The Bad
Black-and-white interface
The Bottomline
The waterproof protection of the Amazon Kindle Paperwhite Kids makes it a safe choice for younger children, though they may be bored by the colorless interface (in which case the Amazon Fire HD 10 Kids tablet might be preferred).
Specs
  • Battery Life: Up to 10 weeks
  • Display size: 6.8 inches
  • Storage: 16 GB
  • Waterproof?: Yes

Read our full review of the Kindle Paperwhite Kids here.

The Kindle Paperwhite Kids is our pick for young readers. The more basic Kindle Kids is still worth buying, but the Paperwhite version adds key features such as IPX8 waterproofing that justify the higher cost.

How does this version differ from the entry-level Kindle Kids? The Kindle Papwerwhite Kids provides everything that the aforementioned child-friendly Kindle does (including the free year of unlimited access to Amazon Kids+) but with a few key upgrades. First, it has a larger display (6.8 inches) and an adjustable warm light to cut down on blue light, especially as bedtime nears. It also has a longer battery life (10 weeks) and offers double the storage capacity (16 GB).

So, is the Kindle Paperwhite Kids worth it? Adults may not mind the black-and-white display of Kindle e-readers, but it's a bigger limitation for kids, who are used to seeing colorful drawings and artwork with their books. Likewise, adult readers may actually prefer a Kindle because they can't be distracted by other apps like YouTube, but parents may want these capabilities for kids. In that case, we'd recommend buying an Amazon Fire tablet instead of a Kindle Kids.

Even with these limitations in mind, in our hands-on review, we found that the Kindle Paperwhite Kids is a great gift for young readers, and it even comes pre-loaded with a library of books. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, the Amazon Kindle Paperwhite Kids is waterproof so parents don't need to worry about spills or accidental immersion in the bathtub or pool. Plus, it comes in three fun, colorful cover options and includes a two-year worry-free guarantee.

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