Kindle Paperwhite 2018 Copy


It seems yesterday that the first e-book readers came out on the market and instead a lot of years have already passed.

The first Kindles, specifically, were launched in America back in 2007 and, since then, have never stopped evolving and updating. In fact, anyone who bought the first model has now been forced to retire it, to upgrade to a more modern ebook reader.

However, if a device of this type is still functional, throwing it away is a real shame. In this article, therefore, we want to offer you some alternative uses for your old Kindle.

6 ways to bring your old Kindle back to life

The device produced by Amazon, as with old smartphones, can somehow have a second life. Although having to do without colors (unless we are talking about Kindle Fire ), the solidity and technical specifications of these tools still make them widely reusable.

The projects listed here may surprise you. Some work on the software to change the Kindle’s display options, while others add functionality with additional electronic components such as an Arduino.

In most cases, however, you’ll probably need to jailbreak your Kindle. In practice, this means making changes to the software to remove restrictions imposed by the manufacturer.

Please note: that most of these projects will guide you through potentially risk-free modification procedures. So, keep in mind that jailbreaking could definitely ruin your Kindle.


A digital photo frame with Kindle Fire

digital photo frame is a really cool way to display family photos, but sadly they are a lot more expensive than you think. You can pay up to a hundred dollars for a brand new product or, if you have an old Kindle Fire and are armed with wits, you can build your own at home.

It’s one of the simplest projects you can make with your old Kindle Fire because useful software is potentially already available on the Amazon App Store. Simply download a photo slideshow app and then start building a beautiful frame to house your Kindle.

Take the measurements of the device and look for a frame, perhaps in wood, in which to set the same (it should cost just a few euros).

Smart home display

The e-ink technology of a Kindle makes its device pleasing to the eye, as it simulates the classic paper.

In fact, therefore, you can convert an outdated device into a DIY display for your smart home. In this sense, he studies the way to mount the same on the wall, perhaps with a frame (along the lines of the previous project).

In that sense, you can then follow Matt Healy‘s instructions for his project. He bought a second-hand Kindle for less than $ 30 and, through software that updates the screen every minute, he found himself with a display that shows data such as notes, weather, and calendar.

Taking into account the low power consumption of e-ink technology, if your old Kindle has an undamaged battery, you won’t need to recharge your new smart display frequently.

Kindle display with “literary clock”

This project is quite unique since it is possible to make your e-reader indicate the time but use quotations from the books.

Keep in mind that, for a quote per minute, 1,440 citations per minute are needed: to manage all this it is necessary to resort to particular software and its installation, as reported on this page.

Designer Jaap Meijers found most of the quotes from a list compiled by the Guardian newspaper. He then transformed these quotes into images and created a mechanism to retrieve the right quote at the right time. Of course, to change your old e-reader so radically, you’ll need to jailbreak your Kindle.

The only hardware used by the author is a Kindle 3 WiFi, a very early model with an integrated keyboard. You can try to find this second-hand model on eBay or similar. Even in the flea markets, these devices can be found for a few euros.

i migliori kindle

A sheet music player

For musicians, iPads are proving to be the perfect alternative to carrying around sheet music on paper. You can even purchase footswitches that work with an iPad to browse pages wirelessly. But buying a tablet just for this purpose can be an unnecessary cost, especially when you can use a Kindle instead.

To build this project, you will need an ESP8266 for wireless communication. After jailbreaking your Kindle, there are several software you will need to install that allows you to run custom scripts. You can download the scripts from the aforementioned Instructables site, where you will also find the more precise steps for configuration.


As for the hardware, you will build a simple two-button switching circuit that is not too complicated and can be redesigned to suit your needs. Once your Kindle is working, make sure you find a way to send the scores to it and that’s it.

Kindle Fire and Raspberry Pi monitors

The Kindle Fire is a kind of hybrid between e-reader and tablet that has conquered a large slice of the market. Many, therefore, being in possession of outdated models, are wondering what to do with these devices.

Since, compared to e-ink technology, Kindle Fire devices are fully equipped with color screens, it is possible to combine them with Raspberry Pi projects.

In this specific project, the Raspberry Pi uses an internet connection paired with the Microsoft Remote Desktop app. However, you can’t just download the app to your Kindle – you’ll need to take action by downloading an APK file for the app to work.

By following the previous link, therefore, you can explore the various opportunities in this sense, with the possibility of showing real-time data on the screen such as calendar, temperatures, and much more.

Kindle refrigerator display case

Having virtual message boards, such as those offered by Slack or similar, is useful but sometimes classic solutions can be more practical.

Creating a refrigerator board with an old Kindle, in this sense, can be a great idea. In fact, through it, you can write down the food to buy, but also send e-mails and write down other types of reminders.

For this project to work, you’ll need to run a web server on a Raspberry Pi, as well as install some dependencies. Peter Vojtek, the creator of this great little project, has documented the process on his Di Lui website.

And if you’re looking for an easy way to connect your Kindle to your refrigerator, a couple of strips of magnetic tape should be an ideal solution.

Don’t throw your old Kindle away

Devices like the Kindle continually receive new updated versions. Unfortunately, all this pushes the old models to landfill. As you have been able to appreciate, however, these products have a technical and material solidity, which allows an alternative use once they are outdated.

With a little ingenuity, you can turn an old Kindle into a myriad of creative projects and, as proposed in this article, this is only part of the many possible ideas.


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