Why Educators Should Mourn the Departure of the SD Chip Slot from the Kindle 2

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sd_chip_2g_questionCan’t find the expansion slot for additional memory on your Kindle 2? That’s because there isn’t one. And, as I have indicated in earlier posts, that’s not a good deal for educators.

This change seems to be part of the “closing” of the Kindle, where a sleek form factor trumps functionality. If the Kindle is to become the go-to reader of choice, it needs to be more rather than less useful; the device does not yet support folders, so keeping things on different chips was one potential way to store and organize your library. This removal of the SD slot also eliminates the possibility of a third-party vendor (I can hear the boos and hisses from Seattle) offering formatted books on a chip to readers. With 1) wifi that is hard to turn off and 2) no chip slot, you are pretty much left with the Kindle Store as your source of books.

And this is as it should be–in a retail universe.

But for schools, we need something more adaptable to different situations and uses. To the extent that the DX follows the design of the K2, it will fall far short of its promise as a device that could make sense in a classroom.

  1 comment for “Why Educators Should Mourn the Departure of the SD Chip Slot from the Kindle 2

  1. VAD
    May 28, 2009 at 12:33 pm

    Typically for hardcovers I’m seeing the cost savings are $10 and softcovers around $2 to $4 per book if you only had one kindle attached to one account. However, you can put an infinite amount of kindles per account, and up to six of them can simultaneously have rights to a typical book. So the cost of a typical paper back would go from $10 traditional paper and $8 for a ebook to only $1.33 per copy of the ebook ($8 divided by 6 copies). That’s a tremendous savings of 87 percent. You get these also without the costs of storage space and shipping fees. You also have free access to wikipedia for research. I’m thinking this is actually very much worth it for common textbooks and reading materials that would otherwise need each student having individual copies. Obviously, for research books on specialty topics, paper books still probably make sense as it would be logistically impossible to try to figure out which kindle had which collection of books. For things like library books in schools, it would make sense for Amazon to allow the rights to be granted to kindles and revoked by a librarian who has purchased a copy and allow them to remove rights after a certain period of time. In that case though, think of the advantages, no overdue books, ever. No lost books, no damaged books, no fines….I’m thinking this makes sense in a wide variety of situations. Kids in the middle of the night could research and then check out a central copy of the book.

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