My first Kindle was a $3 garage sale device. Pretty nice, but pretty old as these devices go (I got it just in time to install the final support update for that model). It worked OK. Eventually I misplaced it. Found it again later, after I got my second Kindle. It's around here somewhere.
My second Kindle is a used Paperwhite, bought from Goodwill via eBay for $20 plus shipping about ten months ago. Not a bad deal. But it's the second generation of the Paperwhite (released eight years ago), and the last couple of weeks it's become obvious that the battery is going. Where I once got days of active use and weeks of standby without needing to recharge, now it's more like day singular, two at most, of active use.
The newest generation of the Paperwhite costs $140. That's about as much as I spent on my current low-end desktop PC, and not much less than I spent on my pretty high-performance tower.
A new battery for my eight-year-old Paperwhite runs $15-20, and at eight years old, I'm not confident that the Goodwill/eBay device won't start developing other problems as well.
Meanwhile, the latest generation of the "base" Kindle is on sale for $49.99.
Unlike old "base" Kindle versions, it has a lit screen, like the old Paperwhite.
It has as much storage space as the old Paperwhite (and I've never had storage problems on any Kindle anyway).
The only obvious difference is resolution -- the Paperwhite sports 300 dpi "e-ink," while the "base" model only offers 167 dpi. While I do notice the difference in appearance, I can't say it bugs me terribly.
So: $49.99 for a brand-new device that's in the same league as my old one, or $20 for a battery for the old device, or wait and see what happens?
I'm vacillating between the first and last options. I'm not going to pop $20 for a battery, and install it, and hope for the best.
But I'm also planning to hit a garage sale or three tomorrow. Maybe I'll find another good deal!