Techuisite Digest

01.14.2024: Kindle Scribe more thoughts, iPad Mini, and Vision Pro pre-orders

This will be my first Techuisite Digest since moving to Ghost. This is the free version, but the next will be for paid-members only. Like how it was on Substack before, I plan to do one unpaid and one paid Techuisite Digest a month. If I continue to get more paid subscribers I will probably do more paid posts.

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Kindle Scribe (more thoughts)

Since returning the Kindle Scribe, I really haven’t missed the device. It was nice, but what I needed, the Scribe was not able to fulfill. The size and gap in the display were big reasons it wasn’t going to work for me. I did say something that was incorrect though, that I plan to update the original post.

Apparently AMazon does make it available for you to view Notebooks from other devices. As I was using the Kindle app on my iPhone at work one day, I noticed that you were able to see Notebooks in the More tab. I wasn’t able to edit or share any of the pages in the Notebook, so functionality is still very limited, but at least you can view them elsewhere.

My feelings toward the Scribe are still the same as I shared in my review, I think Amazon’s direction with this device is great. I hope more devices come with pen support and allow some kind of handwriting, or at least allow someone on a Paperwhite or Oasis to use the pen to highlight in a book.

The precision you get from using a pen or stylus is really useful for small text like a book, and I think Amazon should jump on the opportunity since their first entrance into this world was so well done with the Kindle Scribe. If I needed a digital notebook and was not as dedicated to having my data shared between my other, mostly, Apple products, I would probably use the Scribe.

But then again, if I was truly in that situation I may have opted for another alternative such as the Remarkable 2 or one of the great other e-ink tablets that Boox offers—the color e-ink options are especially interesting.

iPad Mini

I have literally done this three times now. Buying iPad Minis is just a thing that I can’t stop doing. Granted, a few weeks or months after buying one I seem to return or sell it, but inevitably I buy another one. That is all to say that I got an iPad Mini again.

This shouldn’t be too surprising since posting my Fantasizing the Ultimate iPad Setup which I spoke about getting an iPad Pro 12.9-inch and a iPad Mini. Right now, I still have a iPad Pro 11-inch, which I still love a lot, but after the whole Kindle Scribe replacing my Kindle 2022 adventure and it not working out, I thought I would go back to an old friend.

The reason I always sold or returned the iPad Mini in the past, is I felt it was an extra piece of tech that I didn’t need. The iPad Mini is best at being a tablet, and the things that I like to use the Mini for, can be done on any other piece of tech I own. My iPhone, bigger iPad, or even when I had a Mac in the past could have done the same things that the Mini could do—and maybe sometimes better.

I always felt like the iPad Mini was superfluous gadget, and when I didn’t find myself using it for a few days I would feel guilty. Because it felt like a device that I already didn’t need I would end up selling it to make myself feel better. Since spending the last year of having a more healthy relationship with technology, I am trying to not feel guilty so easily when I buy something I want instead of something I need.

So I got myself an iPad Mini again and for reading, it is just fantastic. I know I was on a journey to find a new Kindle, but the Kindle app on the iPad is really great, and being able to listen and read at the same time is just so good when I am trying to focus on a book. I am half was through Golden Sun, the second book of the Red Rising series, and am enjoying it so much on the Mini.

The iPad Mini has also took on another role that I will go into more depth in a future post coming soon. For those who signed up for my newsletter I will give you a small hint; lets just say that my relationship with my iPhone has been pretty bad at the end of the year, and the Mini is going to be a device to clear my phone of some urges leading to bad habits.

Vision Pro Pre-Orders

I had a few thoughts about the Vision Pro that I haven’t really discussed much. Other than a post I did on Mac O’Clock when it was first announced, I haven’t really talked about it. The main reason is because it is not a device I plan on getting, nor am I interested in it much.

The appeal others have, I do get to a certain extent, but do find it more of a first product of many that Apple will release in the future. The Vision Pro is similar to the Oculus in the sense that you won’t be wearing this outside, it will be a device you use inside your home or work.

My Before And After Thoughts on Apple’s Headset
Another Apple success story, or the beginning of a huge failure?

I find the technology and Apple’s approach fascinating but the cost, $3500+, and the usefulness of the device are both reasons I won’t be preordering. Like many others, I look forward to going through the configurator once the Vision Pro is available to pre-order on Jan 19th. To see if there is going to be other options for other specifications would be interesting—like storage or chip differences.

The expectation is that Apple won’t sell many, and I think a lot of developers will buy it to make sure their apps take advantage of the new VisionOS on the device itself. I just can’t seem to wrap my head around who will actually want it besides nerds or tech enthusiasts. The cost is so high, and the use seems superfluous—like the iPad Mini, I guess.

Maybe because it is out of my price range, I am being a little more resistant to it. But watching movies (alone), working (alone), or playing games (alone) are all things you can do now without a heavy contraption attached to your face. Maybe there is something else it will offer that I am not getting, either way I wont be pre-ordering anything next week.

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Jamie Larson