The Original Kindle Was So Fugly Because of the BlackBerry

Illustration for article titled The Original Kindle Was So Fugly Because of the BlackBerry

Looking back at the Kindle's history, that original Kindle was pretty rip your eyes out ugly, huh? An odd shape with quirky buttons and even stranger scroll wheel...God who thought of that? Apparently, RIM. Jeff Bezos loved his Blackberry so much he based the Kindle's design off of his favorite gadget.


A hardware designer on the first Kindle told the NY Times Bits Blog that:

"Jeff Bezos would come into our design meetings and say he loved his BlackBerry and the ease with which he could find e-mails and respond to people. That's why the first Kindle was so boxy, had the funky square keyboard and that strange scroll wheel on the side; it was all inspired by Jeff's BlackBerry."


Which is incredibly funny now because the Amazon Kindle Fire looks exactly like a Blackberry Playbook (because it is), though I'm 99.9% sure that the Playbook can't possibly be Bezo's favorite gadget anymore. Either way, it's funny to see that companies were once inspired by RIM and how now everything's just slate after slate after slate. Someone grow a pair and be different, please. [NY Times Bits]

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At the time of it's design, RIM was up in the world, the future of the tiny little keyboard was rosy, and copying a proven design made total sense.

Then, in the January of the year the Kindle was going to be released, Apple pops out with the iPhone, and drastically changed our perception of what should be.

It's not Amazon's fault per se, it's just that Apple spoiled us rotten with design.