New Kindle 3 Reading Light Cover

One of the biggest complaints that naysayers seem to be able to come up with about the Kindle, and eReaders in general, is that you can’t read in the dark.  Sure, you could go with something like an iPad or even the superficially similar, if less useful or functional, Pandigital Novel and be able to read in any lighting besides direct sunlight, but chances are good that if you’re the type to be reading with the lights off then you do it enough that staring into a back-lit display is going to get on your nerves after a while.

Fortunately, Amazon(NASDAQ:AMZN) seems to have come up with a simple and effective solution in the form of a very nice looking, light cover for your eReader that draws on the battery in the device itself to power a small but powerful LED reading light. The Kindle Lighted Leather Cover currently comes in seven colors, doesn’t weigh you down with bulky batteries or annoying cords, and costs about $60.  It’s difficult to say, just yet, whether or not the power drain from the light will be a major concern, but it would seem doubtful given the greatly increased battery life of the newly updated Kindle and the notoriously low power draw of quality LED lights.  This seems like a great idea for anybody who likes to read in bed without disturbing somebody, or even just those of us who don’t do all our reading inside.

13 thoughts on “New Kindle 3 Reading Light Cover

  1. This is really a great idea. I use the M-Edge executive case w/ one of their lights with my Kindle 2 and it has been an entirely satisfactory way to deal with darkness without having a huge screen glaring at you. In a way, it is a bit reminiscent of reading with a flashlight under the covers or under the bed at night as a child.

    While I use both the Kindle and the iPad, I would prefer to use the iPad for other things than long form reading. There are times when the smaller form factor Kindle just fits better, from a size standpoint, than the larger iPad, which has its own strengths and weaknesses.


  2. I’m glad to see this cover! I’d love a 360-degree view of it, though. I’m wondering if the back panel is any thicker than the non-light case. The difference in weight is also another factor I’d like to know. I assume it’s minimal (the difference in listed shipping weights is a mere 1.6oz) but I’m interested nonetheless.

  3. if this is powered by the kindle, doesn’t that mean that you have to pull the kindle out of the case to charge it or connect it to a PC? that seems like a fairly significant hassle to me.

  4. The cover is open on the top and bottom, so the charge port is exposed. No need to remove the cover to charge it.

    On the other hand I am amused at people who say they won’t buy a Kindle because you cannot read it in the dark, only to go back to their paper book and turn on a light. Duh! I use a headlight, it lights up the whole screen, it adds zero weight to the Kindle with or without case and it is useful with paper books as well.

  5. Brilliant! it never occurred to me to use my headlight to read by, but it’s perfect for the task!

  6. is there another power connection on the kindle 3 besides the USB port on the bottom?

    if not, how can the case get power from the kindle without blocking that port?

  7. The hinges on the new kindle 3 cover are gold plated and connect to the battery in the kindle to power the light. So it does not use your usb port. You will not see any wires either.

    I’m interested in seeing how else this new feature gets used by 3rd parties.

  8. It would be nice to read in the dark. but for the most part, my kindle is a book replacement that allows me to carry lots of books, access to an online store, searchable text, and dictionary.

    Since I rarely read a book in total darkness, I doubt that I have alot of need to read a kindle in total darkness too. Though, it would be nice on an airplane for frequent travelers.

  9. The idea seems nice but on the images of the cover, it looks like the light isn’t bright at all. I’d love to see one in person as I use a little light that clips onto my current cover and I’d love to not to bother with the batteries for it all the time.

  10. Does it significantly drain the battery? I realize leds don’t use much juice and I’m probably not going to read in the dark for long periods of time, but I am curious.

  11. The thickness of the cover is not significantly increased by the pull-out light, which is barely noticeable (at least in a black cover). I tried using a head light and also other clip on lights, and found that all of them had a problem creating a glaring spot near the center of the reading area if pointed at the Kindle head-on, and problems at least as severe as the built-in light if lighting the reading area at an angle sufficient to reduce glare. I find the cover’s built in light better for me than all other options except reading in an area with bright enough lighting not to need any augmenting light. I find it bright enough, even at the relatively dim most distant corner, but not so bright to disturb a close companion.

    It’s true the built-in light decreases battery life, but not so much as to be a major annoyance. Using it often might reduce life from a month to a week, but when using clip on lights, I needed to change batteries almost that often, and they become gradually too dim, whereas the built-in light seems to sustain its brightness. Moreover, other lights don’t automatically turn off when the Kindle goes into sleep mode so if, like many of us, you read in the dark and often fall asleep without turning off Kindle and light, the cover’s light will last quite a bit longer than alternatives.

    I just don’t understand those who think this is too expensive; how much would it cost to have a clip-on that was smart enough to automatically turn itself off whenever you turned off the Kindle or it went into sleep mode. The only uncertainty is durability. It seems well made but unclear if it will hold up to years of sliding it in and out at least several times a week.

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