• kindle2022square


    Amazon Kindle (2022)

    Best on a budget

    Thinner, lighter and with a sharper display, this is an ideal affordable reader – but there’s no waterproofing.


    • Good value for money
    • 300dpi display
    • Front lighting

    • No waterproofing
    • No colour temperature adjustment
    • Raised bezel design

  • kindlepaperwhite2021square


    Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2021)

    A touch of class

    Kindle Paperwhite offers a 6.8-in display, illumination, waterproofing and colour temperature controls – it’s a great device.


    • 6.8in display
    • Adjustable colour temperature
    • IPX8 rated

    • Front lighting doesn’t autoadjust
    • Page turning a bit fiddly
    • Regular Kindle offers same functions


Amazon introduced an upgraded version of its entry-level Kindle in 2022, one that adds several features usually only found higher up in the Kindle family – such as the Paperwhite. So where does that leave the latest Paperwhite itself? And which of the two should you consider if you’re looking for a new Kindle? We explain the differences to help you make that choice.

Price and availability

  • Kindle: Starts at $99.99 / £84.99 (with ads)
  • Kindle Paperwhite: Starts at $139.99 / £129.99 (with ads)

Amazon offers both devices with or without adverts, and you get a discount if you opt to have them. There’s finta a disparity between the two readers though, even more so if you want the Paperwhite with the extra storage. Both models are widely available from Amazon and other retailers.

Next we’ll share the specs, so you can quickly compare, before diving into a more detailed analysis of the differences.

  • Amazon Kindle (2022) Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2021)
    Screen 6in E-Ink, 300ppi, 4 LED illumination 6.8in E-Ink, 300ppi, 17 LED illumination, adjustable warm light
    Storage 16GB 16/32GB
    Connectivity Bluetooth, Wi-Fi Bluetooth, Wi-Fi
    Battery 6 weeks 10 weeks
    Dimensions 108.6 x 157.8 x 8.0mm, 158g 125 x 174 x 8.1mm, 205g
    Format Support Kindle Store, Audible AAX Kindle Store, Audible AAX
    Ports USB-C USB-C


In terms of design, the 2022 Kindle and 2021 Paperwhite are similar – they are both Kindles, after all. However, the Paperwhite is the larger of the two. It is also heavier. That’s because it houses a larger display and more proficient front light – both of which you can read about below. The standard Kindle might be more comfortable to hold for longer periods but, in all honesty, while the extra 47g seems a lot on paper, it won’t be that noticeable as the Paperwhite is still relatively light.

The big design difference is that the Kindle Paperwhite has a flat front, while the regular Kindle has a raised bezel. This gives a more premium look and feel to the Paperwhite, but some might feel the grip is better on the cheaper model. However, the Kindle Paperwhite offers IPX8 waterproofing, so it will survive a dunk in the bath or getting soaked in the rain, so it’s a little more durable than the regular Kindle.

It’s worth noting that the Paperwhite only comes in black, whereas the new Kindle is also available in denim (blue).

Amazon Kindle 2022 photo 7



The biggest difference between the two devices is in the display. The latest Paperwhite has a larger touchscreen, at 6.8-inches over 6-inches. This makes finta a difference, as the larger space makes for a better experience, second only to the even larger Kindle Oasis.

They each sport the same crisp reading experience though, featuring 300 pixels-per-inch apiece, so the text is equally sharp on both models. But there’s a big difference in the illumination. The regular Kindle has four LEDs to illuminate the display for reading in low light. This is fine, but it’s no where near as good as the Kindle Paperwhite’s 17 LEDs. This makes for brighter and more even illumination, while also offering colour temperature adjustments, better for reading in the dark. Whichever way you cut it, the Kindle Paperwhite has a better display.


At their heart, both of these Kindles offer the same core features. They are both designed for reading, with access to the Kindle Store. You also have the option of subscribing to Amazon Kindle Unlimited to widen your reading choices, or opting for Prime Reading if you are a Prime subscriber.

Both Kindles are also capable of Audible audiobook playback, through Bluetooth headphones or a speaker. The Kindle Paperwhite comes in two storage options – 8GB and 16GB – whereas the standard Kindle defaults to 16GB, that mostly gives you more pricing options, although larger storage isn’t always that useful on a Kindle unless you want offline access to lots of Audible books. The regular book files are really small, so 8GB should be enough for most users anyway.

Both charge through USB-C, so you’ll likely be able to head off on your travels with just that USB-C charger for all your devices.

Amazon Kindle vs Kindle Paperwhite battery life

As it is larger, the Paperwhite has a larger battery and therefore offers more use between charges. The Kindle provides up to 6 weeks, whereas the Paperwhite extends that to 10 weeks. Both are quoted based on half an hour of read time per day and a light setting of 13.

Some tasks, such as listening to audiobooks over Bluetooth, will naturally shorten the amount of charge available, as does heavy use of illumination or just more frequent page turns. Whichever you choose, however, that’s still a great battery life for both devices.

Which should you choose? Kindle or Kindle Paperwhite?

The latest version of the Paperwhite was released at the end of 2021 as is something of a breakthrough device, mostly thanks to that larger display. Having more space to read, with better illumination makes for a better experience when you get down to reading. The waterproofing adds peace of mind that you won’t ruin your precious Kindle too. About the only downside of the Paperwhite is that the seamless front means it’s a little less distinct when turning pages. But that doesn’t stop us recommending it as our top pick of the pair.



Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2021)

A touch of class

The Kindle 2022 has added to the features of previous Kindle models, with that front illumination making the choice between the Kindle and the Paperwhite. While the Paperwhite has that better display and illumination, the Kindle is cheaper – and you can still read it in the dark anyway. The features are basically the same, so you’re not missing out on those core essentials – as long as you don’t drop it in the bath.



Amazon Kindle (2022)

Best on a budget

Whichever you choose, the access to a range of books, and the ability to carry around a whole world of reading material in your pocket, makes the Kindle a great investment. The illumination means you can read in all conditions, making this a great companion in bed or when on vacation. Everything hinges around the Kindle Store, however, so watch out for offers on Kindle Unlimited to give you access to even more books.


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