Amazon’s older Kindles will start to lose their internet access in December

Amazon’s Kindle e-readers with built-in 3G will begin to lose the ability to connect to the internet on their own in the US in December, according to an email sent to customers on Wednesday. The change is due to mobile carriers transitioning from older 2G and 3G networking technology to newer 4G and 5G networks. For older Kindles without Wi-Fi, this change could mean not connecting to the internet at all.

As Good e-Reader first noted in June, newer Kindle devices with 4G support should be fine, but for older devices that shipped with support for 3G and Wi-Fi like the Kindle Keyboard (3rd generation), Kindle Touch (4th generation), Kindle Paperwhite (4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th generation), Kindle Voyage (7th generation), and Kindle Oasis (8th generation), users will be stuck with Wi-Fi only. In its email announcement, Amazon stresses that you can still enjoy the content you already own and have downloaded on these devices, you just won’t be able to download new books from the Kindle Store unless you’re doing it over Wi-Fi. You can see Amazon’s email to customers below:

Amazon’s email announcing the end of internet connectivity on older Kindles.

Things get more complicated for Amazon’s older Kindles, like the Kindle (1st and 2nd generation), and the Kindle DX (2nd generation). Since those devices relied solely on 2G or 3G internet connectivity, once the networks are shut down, the only way to get new content onto your device will be through an old-fashioned micro-USB cable.

In an email to The Verge, Amazon says it has a few different options for active customers with impacted devices, outside of the company’s usual trade-in options. According to Amazon, if your eligible, meaning you’ve read on one of these older Kindles between January 1st and June 30th, 2021, you should be contacted about the following credits and offers (check your email for a promo code):

For customers with Kindle (1st Generation), Amazon is offering a free Kindle Oasis (10th Generation) device and cover.

Customers with Kindle (1st and 2nd Generation), Kindle DX (2nd Generation), and Kindle Keyboard (3rd Generation) can receive $70 off a new Kindle Paperwhite or Kindle Oasis, plus $25 in ebook credits.

Customers with Kindle Touch (4th Generation), Kindle Paperwhite (5th Generation, 6th Generation, and 7th Generation), Kindle Voyage (7th Generation), and Kindle Oasis (8th Generation) can receive $50 off a new Kindle Paperwhite or Kindle Oasis, plus $15 in ebook credits.

While in an ideal world, Amazon would replace every device left without internet connectivity, this issue is largely out of Amazon’s hands. The carriers have all committed to different time frames for when older 2G and 3G networks will go kaput, with AT&T setting the date for February 22nd, 2022, T-Mobile reportedly targeting April 2022, and Verizon shooting for December 31st, 2022.

Taking those into account, Amazon’s December date seems premature, but better to be prepared now, than left with a less useful e-reader later this year.

Update July, 29th 12:37PM ET: Added additional Amazon offers for customers with impacted Kindles.

Update July, 31st 12:00PM ET: Added Amazon’s eligibility window for qualifying for Kindle offers.


I’m guessing, for the time being, you’ll still be able to side load.
A shame, I just replaced the battery on my second gen DX. Wish they’d make another large Kindle to replace it.

Not that my kindle ownership was financially contributing to the bezos kingdom in a significant way, when it’s screen cracked I bought a used kobo to try out something in a different ecosystem.

Been surprisingly great, and has me eyeing up the forma for an upgrade soon. The Elisa seems near, but probably far more than I need. But both are in the wheelhouse of DX screen size.

I’m sure we’ll still be able to sideload. I don’t use my DX much anymore, but I still like to take it out and use it once in a while.
The 7-inch Oasis is my go-to now.

The 7-inch Oasis is my go-to now

I love mine, but the battery life is terrible – and I have backlighting and WiFi off most of the time My old Paperwhites seemed MUCH better for battery life.

That’s because the battery is so much smaller in the Oasis. I had the earlier 6-inch Oasis (still have it), and they dealt with the battery issue there by putting the rest of the battery in the included case. For the 7-inch Oasis, they discarded that idea and just left the battery smaller. I’m okay with it because I like the bigger screen and will take the tradeoff of charging more often.

Look up the Boox Note Air or Boyue Likebook P10. They are 10" eInk eReaders. They both run Android so you can just install the Kindle App and they handle PDFs extremely well.

The article confirmed you will be able to side load. It says right on this page that without WiFi, "the only way to get new content onto your device will be through an old-fashioned micro-USB cable"

"For time being"?

Kindles supported side-loading via USB since the beginning, and this won’t change going forward.

This is a deeply misleading headline.

This is a deeply misleading headline.

Do you expect anything less from The Verge. For some reason they think if they don’t lure people in with fantastical misleading headlines that nobody will click. When in fact this may work a few times for new users eventually people just start ignoring the source thinking this is click bait.

It’s like if a dying YouTube channel were a news publication.

So I suppose we can infer that you are a … new user or that you’ve not yet been hoodwinked more than a few times?

Because here you are.

Some of us come here for partly the occasional great article, partly out of nostalgia, and mainly in spite of the changes made in the last year or two. I know I do, but I come here less often than I used to. Things change I guess.

Remember the show On The Verge with Joshua Topolsky? It had a magical way of making tech feel like pop culture. Still doesn’t feel right that it ended so abruptly…

I like how they clearly have multiple headlines for each article. Oh you didn’t click that clickbaity headline? When you come back a few hours later its a different one, trying again to get you to click it.

I’ve no qualms keeping no tracking/ad blockers on while visiting.

To be fair, thats likely A+B testing a lots of websites do it, some even use bots. I find less and less reasons to stick with vox these days though

How? Certain older Kindles that didn’t include wifi will no longer be able to access the internet in the near future.

The headline:

Amazon’s older Kindles will start to lose their internet access in December


That heavily implies all.

You’re looking for something to be angry about.

I am no fan of Amazon, and of course my immediate reaction to this headline is "what nefarious business are Amazon up to now" and then I click through. Don’t try to pretend that wasn’t the intention behind the headline – when in fact today is apparently that one time in a blue moon where Amazon are completely innocent of wrongdoing. That [almost] ancient internet tech is shutting down will of course render ALL devices dependant on that tech useless. Which would be a much better article, a much better headline – but then The Verge wouldn’t get all the "I hate Amazon" clicks. And clicks are all that matter, right?

I’m trying to figure out which part of the headline accuses Amazon of wrongdoing?

These people are all trying to be mad, and when you try to be mad, you usually end up being mad whether there’s a reason to be or not.

When talking about older Kindles that will lose all internet connectivity I think it’s fair to feel like people held on long enough and an upgrade is in order anyway.

Kindles are stupid cheap.

Just because things are stupid cheap, doesn’t mean it’s a reason to upgrade.

Mine is 8 years old, still works. Even though the equivalent version is only £80, why should i buy a new one?

Totally agree.
Luckly, living in the old Europe, I can keep my 2nd gen Kindle forever.

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