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The latest and greatest may not always be the best option. The Kindle reader is a perfect example of this. Before we purchased our pair of Kindle Touches, we had heard of cruisers being able to use the e-readers as an internet device. Although crude in application, the 3G models supposedly allowed one to check email or websites without cost, anywhere in the world. Sounds great right? The ability to do that is the only reason that we paid extra to select the 3G option on one of the Kindles that we purchased. After receiving them though, we were never able to actually make the device connect to the web without Wi-Fi. Sure, we could connect to the Amazon store and buy a book, but we definitely couldn’t do any of the other tricks that we had heard of. I’ve come to realize why.

The other day we were hailed by the boat that had just anchored behind us, Island Dream. The boat’s owners, Pat and Darnell, are friends of friends, and so we dropped by to pay them a visit. While we were onboard their boat, the subject of internet came up, specifically accessing it with Kindles. They shared that they have been able to use their device to get online and they let us know why they believe that we haven’t been able to. Apparently, the newer Kindles, like our Kindle Touch, have had that functionality removed from them. If you want to be able to get that free worldwide 3G internet access, you need to purchase this Kindle!

Our Kindles have been excellent for reading and given the other ways that we have of getting online, the fact that ours don’t work as I thought they might hasn’t been too big of a hardship. If I was going to buy one all over again though, I’d by this one, without question.

Not the latest but possibly still the greatest.

Note: If you have been able to access the web on a Kindle Touch with 3G (not Wi-Fi), and not just the Amazon store, please share how.


  1. i’m not a cruiser, but I bought the Kindle paperwhite wi-fi version. Being land-based, I figured there were enough options to hook up to wi-fi pretty much anywhere you go. I haven’t received it yet, but am looking forward to getting it.


    says the ‘experimental’ browser is on the touch.

  3. Duh, silly me. I get it now. Not via 3g.


  4. I can attest to the older kindle keyboard 3G wireless internet working worldwide – I’ve used mine in Iceland, Dubai, Istanbul and Tahiti without issue.

  5. “Apparently, the newer Kindles, like our Kindle Touch, have had that functionality removed from them.”
    When you say ‘removed’,
    does that mean it was sold with the capability but then something (software?) was later altered so that you couldn’t? Having access amazon to order books but nothing else on the internet seems to imply this.
    removed from before the unit was sold?
    The former is a little more troublesome but knowing Kindle and Amazon’s policies when it comes to the books you ‘purchase’ (i.e., you don’t own the books and they can take them away from you anytime they want) I wouldn’t be a surprised.
    I see that the Kindle Touch 3G is listed as ‘Currently Unavailable’ on so maybe it’s the latter.
    We are in the market for an e-reader but I don’t like the terms of use for Kindle and looking at possibly getting a nook, or using an app on a tablet computer.

  6. Mike,
    We have one of each, I have a Kindle Keyboard which allows me to check gmail or yahoo, but NOT msn. I can also go to some websites, but not others as it asks for a wifi connection. The interface is clunky to say the least, but I have managed to get crucial weather reports and email when in places like Dominica where internet was a distant dream. A definite “nice to have” when used as a “last ditch” device.

    Dana’s Touch has the same experimental browser on the menu, but it asks for a wifi connection anytime she tries to use it.


    • I would never suggest it as a primary internet device. You’re right, the interface is not refined at all. For that matter, so is the ENTIRE Kindle interface. Used as you described though I think it could have its uses.

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