The Kindle Scribe lacks this Key Feature

 Minute Read
January 11, 2023
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With so much anticipation as to what to expect from the new Kindle Scribe, Amazon’s first venture into a journal writing ereader, perhaps we were expecting too much.

And Amazon has some pretty stiff competition, with the likes of Remarkable, Kobo and Onyx BOOX with their own stylus offerings.

However, As I laid out in my Kindle Scribe wish list just over a year ago, the icing on the cake was missing.

An Android App-based Operating System.

One possible reason for Amazon steering clear of an app-based OS is due to battery consumption, something that Amazon has been protective over as it aims to have the best efficient ereader on the market.

The downside of integrating a more complex operating system, is that it requires more processing power and memory. The Kindle has traditionally been purely focused on reading, which means less processing power, this not only saves on battery but also reduces the cost of each device.

I think it’s a shame as it would be quite nice to play web-based apps such as Wordle, Sudoku and Scrabble with friends on the Scribe.

However, a lack of apps was the least disappointing feature on the new Kindle Scribe. Here is what Amazon got wrong on the Kindle Scribe, which goes into detail some of latest features that were a complete mistake.   

No Apps for Now

Even though the Kindle Scribe does not allow third-party apps for now, that isn’t to say it will stay that way.

Who knows, maybe within a couple of years we’ll see a Kindle Scribe Pro version which includes a Kindle OS, similar to what we see on Kindle Fire tables.

Amazon already have an apps-based OS at their disposal. Whether they can reduce the OS to a lite version so it requires less memory or processing is another thing, or if they can design a better CPU/GPU with less power.

More Competition Still to Come?

With Huawei's Matepad Paper, Lenovo's Smart Paper and now the Amazon Kindle Scribe entering the stylus arena, will we see the likes of Goggle, Apple or even Samsung join the mix?

Both Google and Apple have their own ebook store and operating system. With the resources available and experience in the tablet market, it would not take much for either company to design their own ereader.

However, ereaders still only account for a fraction of the total number of tablet devices worldwide. With that said, Amazon certainly believes this is a market worth pursuing even though it’s ereaders are sold at cost or at a loss.

Do you think Amazon missed a trick by not designing the Scribe with an app-based OS? Let me know your thoughts below and whether we could see this happen with any future update.

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Dave is our resident tech expert with a 25-year track record as a hardware design consultant and specializes in E-ink and battery management design. He holds a bachelor’s degree BEng in Electronic Engineering and is a member of the IET,
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