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BooksThere are quite a few stories here in patrickWeb about the Kindle and about Amazon (see the links to the left for indexes to both topics). I confess that I am a fan of both. I also love the iPad — but for different reasons. The media loves to write about arch rivals and head-to-head competitors. They want to speculate about whether Fire will win out over the iPad. I don’t see it that way. In fact I see them both as winners. There is not going to be one device that is best for all things for all people. That is the great thing about consumer technology — there is something for everyone. Some will be happy to have an iPad as their sole “computer” and use it for reading books, writing stories, doing their email, and shopping on the Web. Others will want more purpose-centric devices. If you read a lot of books, you will want a Kindle. If you like to read outdoors, forget about using an iPad. On Saturday I received the new $79 Kindle. (I ordered the Kindle Touch and a Fire also but they will not be available until November). The new Kindle is great. It has no keyboard and is therefore smaller. You can hold it in your hand and read to your heart’s content and never get a sore wrist. It weighs next to nothing. The e-ink makes the words clear as a bell indoors or outdoors. If there is something you need to type, it has an onscreen keyboard that lets you select with the cursor. If you are going to write a story, that would be no good but to enter the SSID of your home WiFi network to get started, it is no problem. The new Kindle is #4 for me. I sold the Kindle DX on eBay and handed down one to my wife who doesn’t care about having the very latest model like I do. When the Kindle Touch and Fire (Kindles 5 & 6) arrive, I plan to donate a Kindle or two to the local senior center. What will Fire be like? I can’t wait to try it, but I expect it will be great for consuming media and for shopping — probably better than the iPad. When it comes to syncing my board papers between Dropbox and Goodreader, I expect the iPad will continue as the preferred solution. I expect the apps for CNBC and Bloomberg financial reporting, aviation and healthcare apps and many other apps will continue to be best on the iPad. I don’t see a replacement for FaceTime with the grandchildren. The best news is that we have some competition for tablets. That may make Apple the first company to have a market value of a trillion dollars, or it may mean that there are enough differences in the preferences of billions of people in the world that there is room for at least a handful of very successful products and companies. My bet is on the latter.