Since the release of the very first Amazon Kindle so many years ago, I’ve been hooked. As an avid reader, I loved the ability to carry hundreds of books on my person in one thin, lightweight device. Never again would I have to drag along heavy books on my travels, or worry about bending and wrecking the pages. I’m fussy about these things, you know?
Since then, Kindle E-readers have only continued to improve, but they’re still plagued with one major issue that Amazon just can’t seem to wrap their head around. Google figured it out, and they prospered because of it, and others are slowly waking up to it as well. What Amazon hasn’t discovered yet, is the importance of open source, and having your product so free and open that enthusiasts can tinker and improve it for years to come. Thankfully, some clever fellow found a way around this, and we’re the richer for it.
Why you Should Jailbreak your Kindle Paperwhite
If you know nothing about jailbreaking Kindles, then please take my word for it that the Paperwhite is the most locked down e-reader that Amazon has ever released. I won’t get into the technical reasons because a) I don’t know enough about them and b) the details aren’t important, but believe me… it’s locked down tight. That’s a shame, because it’s also (in my opinion) the best e-reader they’ve released. The screen is crisp, it’s lightly lit for nighttime reading, the page turns are fast and responsive. So you might be asking, what’s the point of jailbreaking at all?
The main reason for me and many others is that jailbreaking the Paperwhite allows us to load in a proper hyphenation engine. You know how books sometimes look crazy on e-readers because one word jumps onto the next line, and leaves huge gaps all over the place? This jailbreak called JBPatch fixes all that with a proper hyphenation engine that inserts hyphens where applicable. It makes a huge, huge difference to your reading experience.
In addition to that functionality, users can also set their own screensavers, as well as adjust the margins of pages, which is a major boon. Once again, Amazon set the margins quite wide on the Paperwhite, and shortening them allows a person to fit more text on the screen, which dramatically improves readability.
Installing the Jailbreak
Instead of trying to explain it myself, I suggest you head over to this page and follow all of the instructions! Ixtab explains it better than I ever could, and I think you’ll find that the whole experience is rather straight forward. After you’re done, play around with it and then come back and tell me what you think. I have a feeling that you’re going to be pleasantly surprised with how damn awesome the improvements really are.