Looks like Amazon is making good use of its Goodreads acquisition. When it debuted the latest Kindle e-reader Tuesday, among the features and specs touted—faster processor, higher-contrast screen, next-gen light—was Goodreads integration, giving readers a built-in community of 20 million to share and discover books (not to mention, help the company increase reader engagement). Amazon had purchased Goodreads back in March reportedly for about $150 million.
The latest Kindle Paperwhite models will retail beginning at $119 and start shipping Sept. 30. While consumers will appreciate the bump in specs at the same price points as the previous generation, what distinguishes the new models are features for parents, children, and students.
FreeTime, parental controls previously available only on Kindle Fire tablets, can be found in the new Paperwhite, so children can read hand-selected books and get rewarded with badges when reaching reading milestones. Parents can refer to progress reports for in-depth analytics, including total time reading, number of words looked up, badges earned, and books finished.
Other features that will be handy for the back-to-school crowd include Vocabulary Builder, which compiles looked-up words into lists, and Smart Lookup, which pulls up definitions alongside reference information about a word, character, or topic using Wikipedia and the X-ray feature. Furthermore, Kindle Matchbook, which also debuted today, will allow customers to purchase Kindle versions of books purchased in print for $2.99 apiece.