Noted by paidContent this morning, Amazon has quietly retired the $99 Kindle Touch and is directing customers to the more expensive $119 Kindle Paperwhite. Calling the Kindle Paperwhite a “newer model” on the old landing page for the Kindle Touch, users will have to wait approximately four to six weeks for a new, entry-level Kindle with a touchscreen display. The only other option is the Kindle PaperWhite 3G model that costs an additional $60 when compared to the standard Kindle Paperwhite. Besides directing people to the Kindle Paperwhite, Amazon has also removed the Kindle Touch from the lineup listed at the top of the page.
There are significant differences between the two Kindle models. The Kindle Touch offered 4 GB of storage that could hold up to 3,000 books. Alternatively, the Kindle Paperwhite has 2 GB of storage, but only 1.25 GB is available to the user to hold up to 1,100 books. The Kindle Touch offered a Text-to-Speech function that could read English-language content out loud, but the Kindle Paperwhite doesn’t include that feature.
The Kindle Paperwhite model does offer a superior screen though. According to Amazon, the Kindle Touch offered 600 x 800 pixel resolution at 167 ppi, but the Kindle Paperwhite offers 221 ppi as well as a screen that lights up for reading in bed or other dark places.
It’s possible that Amazon wanted to sell out of the Kindle Touch models without directly indicating that the Kindle Paperwhite was the inevitable successor. Amazon also discontinued the Kindle DX recently without much fanfare. Earlier in the month, Amazon had slashed the price on the Kindle DX from $379 down to $299 in order to sell out the remaining stock of the device. The Kindle DX offered a larger 9.7-inch screen that was better at displaying newspaper articles as well as pages within an academic textbook. Amazon had halted advertisements for the Kindle DX after poor sales and it’s unlikely that the DX will return to the lineup utilizing the new Paperwhite screen.