Which Kindle should I buy? Amazon Kindle, Paperwhite and Oasis e-readers compared

Confused by the difference between the e-readers in Amazon’s Kindle range? We help you choose which model best suits your reading needs.

If you've switched from the printed page to electronic books, there's a good chance you'll have considered an Amazon Kindle - the long-time market leader.

Amazon currently has a range of Kindle e-readers to choose from ranging in price, size and storage - there are light-up Kindles, waterproof Kindles and more, you can see the entire range here.

It can be confusing knowing which one to buy, but don't worry, we are here to help, so keep on reading! We’ve only focused on Amazon’s Kindle range here, and not its Fire tablets.*

For nighttime reading: Amazon Kindle

Amazon Kindle 2019 black front

You know what it's like when you have a book you can't put down. 'Just one more chapter' you think, while your other half implores you for the seventeenth time to switch off the bedisde light and get some sleep. Well that's no longer a problem, thanks to the new Amazon Kindle.

Like the more expensive Paperwhite, it has a backlit screen, so you can read in the dark without disturbing your other half. Which might just save your marriage.

It's still fairly affordable for an e-book reader (£49.99 with adverts, a tenner more without), and the backlight is adjustable, so you can tweak it to your ideal brightness. Plus it has all the features (Bluetooth, text-to-speech for audiobooks) of the previous version. The downside? You'll feel the effects of those late-night reading binges.

Amazon Kindle tech specs

  • 6-inch screen
  • 160x113x8.7mm
  • 174g
  • 4GB storage
  • Extras: backlit screen

One to pack for the beach: Amazon Kindle Paperwhite

Amazon Kindle paperwhite


The Paperwhite has a light-up screen just like the standard Kindle, but it's also waterproof. That means you can read it on the beach or by the pool and not worry about it getting splashed. As well as letting you read in the dark, the backlit screen makes text clearer in bright sun, so it really is ideal for beach holidays (you should probably book one now just to test it out).

The screen is higher resolution too, so text will be sharper and more legible.

But you do pay for these extras. The Kindle Paperwhite costs £89.99, so it's more expensive than the cheaper models. That's for the cheapest model of Paperwhite, which only connects over wi-fi. If you want more storage, you'll have to pay £119.99, while a 4G connection (which lets you download books when you don't have wi-fi) will cost you £179.99.

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite tech specs

  • 6-inch screen
  • 167x116x8.2mm
  • 174g
  • 8GB or 32GB storage
  • Extras: backlit screen; waterproof; optional 4G data connection

The bookworm's choice: Amazon Kindle Oasis

Amazon Kindle Oasis bath


This is the Rolls-Royce of e-readers. It's bigger than the other Kindles (with a 7-inch screen) and the backlight adjusts automatically depending on your surroundings. In the dark it will soften, while in direct sun it will brighten, so text is always perfectly legible without you having to do a thing.

The new model (released in July 2019) has an adjustable warm light, which lets you shift the screen colour from white to amber, which should be easier on your eyes.

The Oasis starts at £229.99 for the wi-fi-only model, while more storage will cost you £259.99. Want a 4G connection to use worldwide when you don't have wi-fi? That'll be £319.99 (though you do get 32GB storage for that too).

The design of the Oasis is significantly different to its stablemates, with a thicker bezel on one side designed to make one-handed reading more comfortable. Which could be invaluable for long reading sessions.

Amazon Kindle Oasis tech specs

  • 7-inch screen
  • 159x141x3.4-8.3mm
  • 194g
  • 8GB or 32GB storage
  • Extras: backlit screen; waterproof; optional 3G data connection

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*Prices are correct at time of writing, but may go up or down.

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