Thursday, September 6, 2012

Live Notes on Amazon's Press Conference 9/6/12

1.  My detailed Photo Log of points made during the announcements

2.  My videos of a very good Paperwhite demo I was given plus a demo of the magazine features on a Kindle Fire 8.9" magazine.

Kindle Paperwhite intro

Glimpses of font darkness

Paperwhite book covers projected onto hall screen

Paperwhite, WiFi (no 3G)

Five Generations of Kindle

Showing "9 mins left in chapter" estimate

"This year, we want to have the best tablet at any price."

Introducing "Kindle Fire HD...."

"AND...we decided to go big."

Next, Bezos describes "the best..."

The actual daring comparison

Youtube videos default to an average image quality: 480p.

  To change the video "quality" to 1080p (which both of these are) or to 720p if that's easier on the Internet system, you'd tap the gear/wheel seen at the right bottom of a video and "Change quality" before choosing one of the bigger rectangle/screen options in the same area.

  Example at the right,
    from the Kindle Fire magazine
    demo video below.

The Kindle Paperwhite, first ...

(Link: ) (Youtube)

We were able to try this front-lit e-Ink Kindle e-reader for ourselves, and it was very responsive.  It has 25 levels of brightness, starting with zero, a setting which comes out on video as more white than the lit display, which at first takes on a bluish tinge until the camera gets used to the light reflected by it.

The staffer went through quite a few options in a short time, with some explanations too.  The demos and Q&A were in the large lobby of the Barker Hangar.

The Kindle Fire HD 8.9" used for a demo of magazine features.

(Link: ) (Youtube)

The Kindle Fire HD 8.9-inch model isn't due out until November 20, but the magazine
features are exactly the same for the 7" Kindle Fire HD, which we were able to try that day, but I took this video when VP Dave Limp demo'd the features on the larger Kindle Fire.

I was especially interested in how effective the text-view is now.  These are very readable (on the 7-inch Kindle Fire HD also), and remind me of hidden booklets within a magazine, callable when you want eye-relief.  Functioning is quite a bit smoother.

BRIEF NOTES made on Sept. 6 [ With a completely lost WiFi connection I concentrated on photos and video.   Below is most of what I typed with a cell-phone connection after seeing the many demos and Q&A sessions. ]

At the Event
Starting the morn' with just a transfer of last night's section on the Amazon event today, for what will be notes taken as I go, some of them as tweets, but I'll mostly be listening and watching and taking some photos.  Will concentrate more on writing it up later as well as incorporating a few photos.

The Sept 6 Press Conference in Santa Monica
As an individual, I'm not "live-blogging," as the big-boys have teams and some excellent technology for that.

For live blogging, I normally watch a combo of CNet, Engadget, and Gizmodo and of course we add The Verge now.

  I also hope to have a few interesting photos as well.

Now to prepare for the shuttle ...

9:55 in iine in front with Len Edgerly, Nate Hoffelder, and Garrett Riley

Lost access
Did video and photo rpts. This was typed after the announcements, while on cell phone.

Interim Update
Well, re Notes during event - EPIC FAIL Could not maintain access with the WiFi network for various reasons, and people right behind me lost theirs also. Many wisely relied on private mifi's

I spent the time taking a quite a few shots of how various points were presented, during the announcements, with two cameras plus quite a lot of video that includes reactions from the audience as Kindle Fire points were made.  [Reactions were quite a bit louder than in the official video which probably has directional mics that ignored sounds from the audience.]
  Many Amazon VPs were made available for demos in the lobby later and for many questions and even answered some.

Am still there and now the crowd, which had avoided the unusually good tasting food they lay out for us because how often can you ask questions directly and get answers at length about one of Amazon's new products. Will return to the hotel, review what I have and write more

I believe I got one very interesting answer to a question others weren't asking re a certain property of the beautiful PaperLight e-Ink device that has such even light that is flexibly managed
  [This was a direct response to a question about possible drop-tests onto the screen that Lab126 had done.]  Here's the response.

The youthfully energetic Len Edgerly and assistant were all over the place getting excellent interviews and demos.

More once I get back and start putting it together. Apologies for the lack of access, but I felt better knowing that all Kindle-interested had plenty to go on in the meantime...

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  1. I have two questions: 1) is the capacitive touch screen a marked improvement over the LED touch screen they used on the Touch? and 2) is the better contrast on the $69 kindle due to a software fix or is it also using the higher definition screen?

    1. Hugh,
      The Paperwhite is ultra responsive. But then I haven't had a problem with the KTouch. But the Paperwhite is very smooth.

    2. Hugh again, I forgot to add the other reply. The better contrast on the $69 Kindle probably comes from their fine-tuning to produce darker fonts. Same screen as far as I've heard.

  2. Thanks for the response, I was concerned the capacitive screen might deminish the sharpness.

    1. Hugh, sure thing. I had been very worried about the contrast. I don't have that worry anymore - it is just amazingly even light and there are 25 steps of difference. Exceedingly responsive. Very easy to read.


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