The Amazon Kindle is the most popular e-reader in the world and it is available in different storage configurations. Users can choose between 8 GB on the entry-level Kindle or choose between the Amazon Kindle Paperwhite 11th Generation 8 GB, Signature Edition with 32 GB or the Kindle Oasis, which also has a maximum of 32 GB of storage. How many ebooks can fit on a Kindle?

One of the benefits of buying books on the Kindle is that they don’t weigh anything or take up space in the traditional sense. If you buy paperbacks and hardcovers, not only do you need shelves to store them, but they weigh a lot. This is very obvious if you have ever had to move and pack 10-20 pound boxes, they are very heavy and require two men. Of course, you can take more books with you on a Kindle than in a backpack. But how many are left? And how much would it weigh?

How big is a Kindle book?

The first question we need to ask ourselves is how big is an eBook? How much storage space does a single eBook take up? Physical books come in many different sizes and the same goes for e-books. A short book such as a Kindle Single is normally around 00 pages and will only take up 1-2MB of storage. Meanwhile, something like a digital textbook or PDF can be up to 1GB. ComiXology comics also vary in size, on the Kindle they tend to be 100MB for each issue, but on tablets such as the Kindle Fire, they can double in size, due to color and HD quality. Manga on the Kindle vary in size, weekly chapters are 4MB to 9MB, while an entire volume can take up to 50MB to 100MB.

The vast majority of Kindle books are under 500 pages, which puts most eBooks in the 1-5MB range. The average size I’ve noticed is around 2MB, like the best-selling by excellence of a great publisher.

How many books can you download?

1GB equals 1000MB. If we divide that by 2MB, the average size of an ebook, you get around 500 eBooks per GB of storage. This 8GB Kindle Basic or Kindle Paperwhite only has 6GB of storage when you take into account the operating system and all the pre-installed features. This drive can only hold about 3,000 books. The Kindle Paperwhite Signature Edition and Kindle Oasis have 32GB of storage, but only 30GB is available, you’ll be able to house 15,000 books.

If you ever get the message that your Kindle is nearing capacity, you can remove them from your device by long-pressing the book and removing it from the Kindle. It is then available in the Kindle Cloud to be downloaded again at a later date.

What if you decided to forgo Kindle books and go into print instead? What if you decide to buy 3,000 or 15,000 physical books. How much would that weigh? A 6×9 medium paperback novel with 300 pages weighs 15.6 ounces. 3,000 pocket pounds would weigh an average of 2,925 pounds. 15,000 pocket pounds would weigh an average of 14,625 pounds. While the average Kindle weighs 61 ounces, it therefore weighs less than 10 paperbacks or 3 hardcovers.

Wrap

If you’re a voracious reader, it makes sense to buy eBooks. They don’t suffer the same wear and tear as a physical book. They are more convenient, you go to a website, click the “Buy” button and download the book on Kindle or just buy it from the Kindle store directly on your reader, while the printed books you have to go to the bookstore and choose it the same day or order from Amazon and have them delivered in a few days, depending on availability.

Having a Kindle and buying ebooks is also better for the environment. Emma Rich led a story on the carbon footprint of a Kindle e-reader compared to paperbacks. “There are approximately 168 kg of CO2 produced over the Kindle’s life cycle and 1,074 kg of CO2 if you buy three books a month for four years; and up to 26,098 kg of CO2 when used at full capacity of the Kindle Paperwhite. Less frequent readers lured by the lower price can still break even at 22.5 pounds over the life of the device,” she wrote in conclusion. The newspaper and book publishing industries together consume 153 billion gallons of water annually, according to the nonprofit Green Press initiative. It takes about seven gallons to produce an average print book, while e-publishing companies can create an e-book with less than two cups of water.

Depending on your reading habits, that would dictate which Kindle would suit your needs. If you just read books, the basic Kindle or Paperwhite model would be great. However, if you read newspapers, comics, and manga, or occasionally load PDFs because these take up more storage, you might want to consider the Paperwhite Signature or Oasis 3 edition.