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Amazon unveils the Kindle DX [UPDATED]

May 6, 2009 |  9:14 am

Kindle dx
The Kindle DX. Credit: Amazon.

Now you can read newspapers, textbooks and PDFs -- all for just $489!

That's because unveiled the third iteration of Kindle, its digital book reader, at a press conference in New York today helmed by CEO Jeff Bezos. Called Kindle DX, the device features a 9.7-inch screen, compared with 6 inches in the previous model, and the capability to store 3,500 books, up from the previous model's 1,500.

Being a digital bookworm doesn't come cheap, though. The $489 price tag is quite a bit higher than that of the $359 Kindle 2. The Kindle DX costs more than some netbook computers and as much as some big-screen TVs.

But it's a small price to pay for saving the newspaper industry, right? Amazon announced partnerships with the New York Times Co. and Washington Post Co. to deliver the New York Times, Boston Globe (if it's still around) and Washington Post on the Kindle DX to readers outside their subscription areas. They have to sign up for a long-term subscription to the newspapers to be eligible for the deal.

"We will extend our reach to our loyal readers who will more readily be able to enjoy their favorite newspapers," Arthur Sulzberger Jr., chairman of the New York Times Co., said in a release.

Other new features include a PDF reader and auto-rotation so that the Kindle can be read in portrait or landscape mode. It's one-third of an inch thick and has 3.3 GB of memory. The device is expected to ship this summer.

Amazon also struck a deal with colleges including Princeton University and the University of Virginia to make Kindle DX available to students this fall. The new model is more suited for reading textbooks, Amazon says.

Updated, 12:10 p.m.: Here's the take on the Kindle DX by Carolyn Kellogg at the LA Times' books blog, Jacket Copy.

-- Alana Semuels