Nothing is more divisive than changing the way we do things. This is evident in the new Kindle home screen change, which dramatically changes the core e-reading experience. The new home screen experience introduced a myriad of changes to most modern Kindle e-readers. Icons have been removed from the UI at the top of the screen. This links to services such as Goodreads, Kindle Store, Back Button, and Search. The search bar is now at the very top of the screen, and the store is right next to it. Goodreads is now in the settings menu. In the middle of the home screen, it now shows the latest books you’ve opened or purchased from the Kindle store, with a link that takes you to the library. The vast majority of the home screen is now devoted to exploring ebooks, with a scroll bar on the side. It recommends books, based on your purchase history or books that Amazon is optimistic about selling. The bottom UI now has two elements; home and library, in the middle of this is an open book icon, clicking on it will take you directly to the book you are currently reading. They also changed various aspects of the playback system, such as dark mode.
Amazon is so happy with its new home screen experience that it has created a dedicated landing page. They have a series of images and small paragraphs that go over most of the basic changes. You’ll also get an idea of which models support new firmware updates, which actually have all the new home screen features. This includes the 10th Gen Paperwhite, in addition to the 11th Gen. It also supports a few iterations of the entry-level Kindle and the Oasis.
Many people are not very happy with the new home screen and wish they could go back to the previous version. I’m sad to report that you can’t go back to the old UI, Amazon doesn’t provide the option.
Michael Kozlowski has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for twelve years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and The New York Times. He lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.