This Wednesday, Amazon sent an email notification to customers who bought (and still use) early Kindle e-readers. Kindle and Kindle DX first- and second-generation devices lacked Wi-Fi support and relied solely on free 3G connectivity to reach Amazon — which is a real problem for those devices, given that US cellular network operators offer 2G and 3G connectivity. frequency bands will reclaim for use with 4G and 5G this year.
Owners of 1st and 2nd generation Kindles should still be able to use the “Manage Your Content and Devices” page on Amazon to transfer books to web-orphaned Kindles via USB cable, but that’s hardly useful compared to the devices’ original promise of freedom from cables and Wi-Fi passwords.
First-generation Kindle owners can get a free 10th-generation Kindle Oasis and cover, and 2nd-generation Kindle and Kindle DX owners are eligible for $70 off a new Kindle Paperwhite or Kindle Oasis, plus $25 in e-mail. book credits, but you’ You must use a promo code from the email Amazon sent to be eligible. Without the promo code, Amazon will only offer 1st Generation Kindle owners a $5.00 Amazon Gift Card.
While only 1st and 2nd generation Kindles will lose all connectivity when 3G is disabled, devices up to and including the 8th generation Kindle Oasis (released May 2016) will be limited to Wi-Fi connectivity only. Kindle Keyboard (3rd generation) users get the same offer as Kindle DX users, while 4th through 8th generation 3G devices are eligible for $50 off a Paperwhite or Oasis, plus $15 worth of e-book credits.
Kindles, of course, aren’t the only devices that will be orphaned in the 3G transition — hundreds of thousands of security alarms will also need to be replaced, as well as elevator phones and fire alarms. The important lesson to be learned is that investments in modern electronics have a fairly short expiration date — and any purchase of electronics that costs the budget should be considered in terms of years of likely service, not just the initial purchase price.
Updating: an Amazon representative wrote to clarify that the early-generation Kindle replacement offerings described above are only available to US users who have actively used these devices between January 1 and June 30 of this year.