10:57AM And that's all folks... time for a hands-on!
10:51AM "Our vision is every book, ever printed, in any language... thank you."
10:51AM "Available for pre-order down, ships on February 24th. Special window for Kindle 1 owners -- if they order midnight tonight, we'll prioritize them."
10:50AM The price: $359.
10:50AM "We're adding some new papers, some new blogs."
10:49AM Bezos is back. "The story is called 'Ur', and like Stephen said, the Kindle in the story has some features we can't pull off."
10:48AM And King is off -- big applause.
10:48AM The pink Kindle exists, a one-off.
10:48AM "Of course, the Kindle in the story does things even 2.0 doesn't do -- it can access other worlds..." Ah. Whoa -- a pink Kindle!
10:44AM Okay look -- the story is basically about how crazy and awesome the Kindle is. So far it's not King's most chilling work.
10:42AM The story actually involves the Kindle. This is pretty weird, Stephen King reading a story written for the Kindle, off of a Kindle, about a Kindle.
10:40AM King is reading from his story, from the new Kindle. Pretty wild.
10:40AM He just called the Kindle's voice "the GPS voice" -- ha!
10:39AM "So this is my new Kindle... and I'm going to read you a piece of the story that I wrote."
10:39AM "The call came in January, and I started the story two days before Obama was inaugurated... and I did get a new Kindle out of it. I said, don't you think I should have one for research?"
10:38AM "So I was thinking about it, and I got a scene in my head -- it's about a young man who teaches english, he's reading a copy of Deliverance, and his girlfriend is upset, but he's ignoring her, finally she blows up and says 'Why can't you read off the computer like the rest of us?!' and I wanted to write that scene..."
10:36AM "I've been a Kindle user, I don't read everything on it, but I read a lot on it. I subscribe to Slate, I can change the font size -- when I said no, I thought 'You're a real ass -- you could have gotten a new Kindle!'"
10:35AM "I got a call from my agent, he asked me if I would be interested in writing a story for the new Kindle... and I said, gee, I don't think so. I don't write stories on demand."
10:34AM "I mentioned earlier, that the Kindle is designed to disappear... well that's what I'm going to do so you can hear from an author." Stephen King is here! Wow!
10:32AM "You'll be able to see it right after this presentation."
10:31AM "The location of the buttons has been really efficient..." Yeah -- a lot of people griped about the old version, and this placement seems way better.
10:31AM "My local newspaper stopped delivering... and I can download it on my Kindle." We have a feeling this will be a story we start hearing a lot more of.
10:29AM Customer testimonials from the folks on screen -- guess what? They love the Kindle 2!
10:29AM Ha! Running off of a Mac, they had the sound muted!
10:28AM "Now I'd like to show you a quick video -- we gave some Kindle customers the new version... here's what they had to say."
10:27AM It's reading! It actually sounds fairly good -- still very computer-voicey, but totally listenable.
10:27AM The screen seems more responsive... text to speech built in. Any document on the device can be read aloud. That is kind of awesome.
10:26AM He's demo'ing how much you can navigate with the 5-way. It lets you go to sections, preview stories. You can also use it to actually move a cursor through documents for word searches. Nice!
10:23AM Bezos is showing off Whispersync -- on New York Times -- using the new 5-way controller to move through stories.
10:22AM New feature: Whispersync. Read a little on one device, switch devices, read there -- it will keep your page wirelessly. Demo time!
10:21AM Automatic newspaper and magazine delivery...
10:21AM 7 times more storage than the original.
10:20AM Yeah -- this is the exact device we've seen. Minimal, grid keyboard, new button placement, and no slider (boo!).
10:19AM 0.36-inches thick... the iPhone is 0.48!
10:18AM "Today I'm excited to introduce the Kindle 2."
10:18AM Wow -- a customer submitted image -- a minister reading wedding vows from a Kindle. "I love the Kindle, it's a gateway drug!"
10:17AM Bezos is detailing what they had to do to make the Kindle compete with actual books. This is similar to the story we've heard before. He's also listing off the ways it's unlike a book (whispernet, dictionary, font size changes)
10:16AM "When we set about designing Kindle, we wanted the book to disappear. When you're reading books, you don't think about the pages or the cover, all your left with is the author's world."
10:15AM "We've gotten thousands of emails from users -- they're not all tech savvy. They're grandparents, parents, kids, travelers, even cat lovers."
10:14AM "More than 10% of the units we sell are Kindle book sales -- that's astonishing. So what happened? 230,000 things happened, and that's Kindle books. Even the best device without selection is useless."
10:14AM "We've been selling ebooks for years, and guess what -- it didn't work... until fourteen months ago." Laughter...
10:13AM "I love the web, I love reading blogs -- but we learn different things from long form and short form. Certain things can only be taught in a few hundred pages." "Long form can teach things that can't be taught any other way. A great book teaches you."
10:12AM "If Gutenberg came back, he would recognize the book. 20 years ago, we had another revolution -- connected devices, computers, mobile devices connected to the internet. These tools are accelerating our ability to read short form."
10:11AM "Long form reading is losing ground to short form -- blog posts, short articles... We change our tools, and our tools change us. 500 years ago there was a new tool called a book -- and it hasn't changed much."
10:10AM "I'd like to thank everyone for coming this morning... with that... Jeff Bezos!"
10:10AM There's an appropriate library-like hush filling the room.
10:09AM And we're about to begin...
10:01AM Aaaand... Amazon is running a little behind schedule it seems.
10:00AM Everyone here seems pretty excited. It's interesting to see so many tech folks psyched to see a device that's emulating a book -- and we're including ourselves in that group.
9:55AM Up on the screen they're flashing famous book-related quotes. It's almost as if this event has something to do with reading and / or books.
9:50AM We're inside the depths of the library and in our seats. Everyone is getting settled, and we're just waiting for the lights to dim.