In the past, if you wanted to get your children reading books on a Kindle, you’d have to make do with simply setting up a child’s profile and then choosing which books you want to add to their library.
Now, however, Amazon has released the all-new Kindle Kids Edition. Following in the footsteps of the Fire Kids Edition tablets, it comes with a year’s subscription to Fire for Kids Unlimited content plus the peace of mind of a protective case and a two-year guarantee against accidental damage.
Otherwise, this is exactly the same device as the regular Kindle first released in early 2019. That means it has the same 6in 167ppi E Ink touch-sensitive display, which is easier on the eye than the bright screens of tablets. It also has a front light that means you can keep on reading in dimly lit environments.
The main benefits of it over a regular Kindle are that you don’t have to fret about it getting broken – Amazon will replace it free of charge without asking any questions anytime in the first two years if it does – and that Fire for Kids subscription.
The latter gives your little ones access to thousands of children’s books at no additional cost, including the entire Harry Potter catalogue, but there’s no way to access the audiobooks, educational apps, films and TV that you also get with the same subscription on a Fire Kids tablet.
Design and setup
Since it has the same hardware as the regular Kindle, there are no surprises as far as the Kindle Kids Edition’s design is concerned. As with its stablemate, it has just one button on the bottom edge for powering it on and off and there’s also a single micro USB port for charging and data transfer
Just like the regular model, the Kindle Kids Edition’s 6in 167ppi E Ink touch-sensitive display is easy to read in all light conditions, although it is worth pointing out that it has no ambient light sensor, meaning you’ll need to manually adjust its illumination according to your preference. What’s more, there are no physical buttons for turning pages or exiting menus – you have to use the touchscreen for everything.
The only real difference in terms of design, then, is that it comes with a choice of either a pink or blue protective case included. This feels well constructed and suitably protective if not made with easy cleaning in mind: the soft-touch texture on the inside of the front cover, in particular, looks like it’ll quickly gather dirt from grubby hands. In a rather nice touch, though, it contains a magnet that not only keeps it firmly shut but also wakes and puts the Kindle to sleep when opened and closed.
When you first use the Kindle Kids Edition, it invites you to set up your child’s profile and activate the Fire for Kids Unlimited subscription. After this, kids can start browsing books right away from the subscription service using categories that include “Characters & Themes”, “New Books” and “Popular Books”.
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