While online book giant Amazon.com has had a fight on its hands with rivals Borders and Barnes & Noble dropping prices on smaller six-inch e-book readers, the company is pushing to give even the iPad a run for its money with a new-and-improved version of its luxury reader.

The new Kindle DX claims to offer 50% better contrast for its 9.7-inch screen (the same size as the Apple iPad) and will be available on July 7.

The new model features text-to-speech as well as auto-screen rotation and has enough space for 3,500 books thanks to its 4GB of internal storage. Unlike most of its competitors, the Kindle DX doesn’t come with any external storage slot. It also features native PDF support.

Like the Kindle 2, the new DX features on-board 3G connectivity, allowing you to purchase books just about anywhere. The company has deals with over 100 countries to provide free 3G coverage, allowing users to buy books directly from Amazon.com.

One of its new features is the ability to post to Twitter and Facebook straight from the device.

Battery life is said to be around a week between charges with wireless connectivity turned on. Turn it off and you double that.

The new version will sell for $US379, a $110 less than the original DX when it debuted in May last year.

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