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Exclusive: meet the Amazon Kindle with 'Paperwhite' backlit display

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Gallery Photo: Kindle Paperwhite images
Gallery Photo: Kindle Paperwhite images

Along with one or more new Kindle Fires, we're expecting refreshed E Ink models in Amazon's e-reader line at the company's Los Angeles event next week as well. One of those appears to be a refreshed Kindle Touch — the button below the display is gone, and the bezel has changed from light to very dark gray. The overall shape of the product and the location of the USB port and power switch appear to be essentially unchanged. From the images we have, it looks like Amazon will be touting the unit with "higher contrast, high resolution, integrated lighting, and eight weeks of battery life," even when using the light. The retail name for this unit is unclear — Amazon could simply call it the Kindle Touch again, but "Paperwhite" might factor in as well.

Speaking of Paperwhite, this seems to be a reference to the unit's improved display over the so-called Pearl E Ink that Amazon has been using since the third-generation Kindle. Many users, though, are likely to be more excited about the backlight — this particular product is almost certainly designed to be the answer to Barnes & Noble's Nook Simple Touch with GlowLight introduced earlier this year.