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  • Aug 17, 2013 02:00pm-08-00pm IST

It also comes with a new, larger price tag of $290.

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Announced Wednesday, the Oasis is both shorter and thinner than 2014's Kindle Voyage, which means there's less space for a battery

It gets more than two weeks of battery life on its own, a sharp decrease from the Voyage, which claimed six weeks of life. To make up for that decrease, the Oasis includes a neat new accessory: a leather cover that doubles as a power source, extending the battery life for more than nine weeks

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  • Aug 17, 2013 02:00pm-08-00pm IST

they're still great options that cost much less.

Oasis is the Kindle's first major physical redesign in years. But for many readers

covers and recommendations for other titles. Amazon (AMZN, Tech30) says it doesn't make money off Kindle hardware

just from content people buy. So it makes sense for them to push their product, but the final result looks more like a confusing storefront than a bookshelf

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  • Aug 17, 2013 02:00pm-08-00pm IST

Kindle recently updated its software across devices

The worst design is actually on the screen

The Kindle Oasis is the most significant Kindle redesign in four generations

That might matter less if the covers were a bit more fun. Available in three shades of distressed leather, the magnet covers work great and snap on nicely, but they look incredibly stuffy. On the plus side, they might trick people into thinking you're reading lyrical prose or important nonfiction while you're really downing Beyoncé fanfic. .

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  • Aug 17, 2013 02:00pm-08-00pm IST

which can extend the battery life to more than two months. Unfortunately

The best improvement is the new cover

Amazon says the screen is more durable and has a bit of give, but I haven't heard many complaints about broken Kindle screens. Mine regularly ends up unprotected at the bottom of a bag, covered in keys, crumbs, and heavy computing equipment. It always comes out unscathed

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  • There are no improvements in contrast or additional features like a warm night mode, but the LED lighting has been tweaked so it's more even

The Kindle has the same Paperwhite screen as the previous model

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Related: The new Kindle Oasis is Amazon's radical e-reader redesign

There's a thicker spine-like edge that gives you a solid place to grip, but the ergonomics aren't really that different. It does bring back physical page turn buttons, a victory for readers who missed them.

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  • Without the cover, the Kindle Oasis is a little slip of a gadget

There are a few practical changes

Is it worth the significantly higher price? Should existing Kindle owners rush to upgrade? That depends on your reading habits, expendable income, and how important it is to look cool while enjoying a book.

smaller and very attractive e-reader whose star feature is a rechargeable cover

Those were just some of the rumors swirling ahead of the latest Kindle's release. Any one of them might have justified the device's very real $290 price tag. Instead Amazon (AMZN, Tech30) made a lighter.

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