There are a lot of people who still use Kindles from over five years ago. Admittedly, if you’re fine with what your current Kindle is capable of, there’s really not been much of a reason to upgrade. I was this way for a long time as I continued to use my aging fourth-generation Kindle from 2011. I then upgraded to the latest Kindle Oasis which has things like a backlight, waterproofing, a color temperature control, and a touchscreen (as basic as that sounds).
If none of those features sound intriguing or convincing to you, perhaps no internet access will. According to an email sent to customers from Amazon, a large chunk of older-gen Kindles are about to lose internet access thanks to the shutdown of the three big carreris’ 2G and 3G networks.
The devices being affected the most include the Kindle (1st and 2nd generation) and Kindle DX (2nd generation). Those devices will lose access to the internet entirely since they solely rely on cellular. (This also means if you want a new book, you’ll have to sync it over USB.) Meanwhile, other devices like the Kindle Keyboard (3rd-gen), Kindle Touch (4th-gen), Kindle Paperwhite (4th-7th gen), Kindle Voyage (7th-gen), and Kindle Oasis (8th-gen) will lose cellular only and remain on Wi-Fi.
The shutdown of 2G and 3G networks is to make room for 5G. T-Mobile, Verizon, and AT&T will all be shutting down their respective networks entirely in 2022 and 2023, with each having plans to use the spectrum for 5G connections. Obviously, 4G/LTE networks won’t be shutting down, so newer Kindles from two to three years ago won’t lose cellular connectivity.
To incentivize people to upgrade their Kindles, Amazon is giving owners of deprecating devices a $50 credit toward a new Kindle Paperwhite or Oasis and $15 of credit for the Kindle bookstore. If you happen to own a first-gen Kindle, Amazon will literally give you the newest Kindle Oasis and a case for free. Owners of other super-old Kindles will receive a $70 credit $25 toward new e-books.
You’ll wanna take advantage of these deals as soon as you can since 2G and 3G networks will begin shutting down this December.