I’ve decided to get an ereader, but because I plan to use it mostly for library ebooks, the Kindle is out of the running. I’ve been looking at the Kobo reader from Borders, and I like the price, but I’m undecided about the wireless version v. the regular version.And then a clerk at a Borders in DC told my SO they were a piece of crap and they get lots of returns of them. Discounting what kind of disgruntled worker disses his own products, I talked to the staff at my local Borders and they haven’t seen any problems with the reader. In fact,they tried to talk me out of the more expensive wireless model (not for quality issues, but because they said for the way I planned to use it, I really didn’t need to spend the extra $20).
So if you have one, tell me the good, the bad, the ugly. If you think the Nook is a better one, or Sony, let me know that too! For what it is worth, Borders is easier for me to get to as a physical place than Barnes and Noble for comparison shopping…but not impossible.
I have a Nook and am very happy with it. That said, if I were buying an ereader today I would go for one that is not connected to a particular book seller – maybe the Sony or maybe one of the more obscure brands – they all actually seem very much alike.
If you’re going to get something primarily as a reader, get a Nook Color, or Amazon Kindle.
If you get the Nook Color, get an SD Card and put an Android OS on it, use the Nook as a tablet and see if you like that. If not, wipe the SD card and use it for storage. If you get the Amazon kindle, read away, but it’s only for reading. Web browsing on it is next to impossible.
A Kindle won’t work, because it is not compatible with the format the libraries use for their ebooks. In fact, the look of horror on the librarian’s face when I told her I was thinking about a Kindle was priceless.
And I don’t want to use it for web browsing, at all. I have my netbook for that. I just want something thin and skinny and light to slip in my purse that holds lots of books so I can read during lunch and breaks and while visiting at the nursing home and on the shuttle bus. The clerk at borders carries his Kobo reader in his apron pocket, and I like that idea.
I have a kobo and I love it. I have a wireless version but I never use that function. I did once but since there is no keyboard, searching for a title was just too annoying. Once I realized that I should just stick to downloading from my computer everything has been smooth sailing.
That is why I said I would buy one of the non-store-specific brands if I had it to do over again. Even though my Nook is just fine and I like it a lot, I have never once used the functions that link directly to Barnes & Noble. I have done all my downloading through my computer.
I bought the Kobo when it was far and away the cheapest ereader available and while, for the price, it was a good value, as a piece of hardware, it leaves something to be desired.
If all you really want to do is read books from start to finish without going back to re-read bits, search for things, or otherwise deviated from start to finish, then it works admirably well and is very, very light, which is nice.
It’s very slow to start up, which is not nice, especially if you tend to read a few minutes at a time.
If you want to do anything other than that, it probably doesn’t do it.
I’d say it starts up in about 30 seconds or so, and then book loads are variable depending on the length of the book from about 10 seconds for a 150 page romance novel to about a minute for Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell.
Just for reference … I just timed my Nook – 1 minute 15 seconds to boot from being turned off to ready to choose a book … however … it is basically never actually turned off. It usually just goes into standby mode and comes back from that much more quickly.
Once booted, it loads a book in a matter of a few seconds.
I am selling a 3g Nook. I had a Nook Color for about a week* and am now content with an iPad.
I bought the 3g nook about three weeks before they announced the color one. It is an excellent text-book-reader (as opposed to content that is graphical). I then heard about the Nook Color’s hackability and the price for an Android Tablet could not be beat.
Turns out there’s three components to a good device…the hardware, the software, and the goo that connects the two. The Nook Color lacks that last component when you’re not using the stock firmware. Leave it stock and it’s low on features, but great on experience.
But I wanted more than a Nook Color/Tablet wannabe could give, so I craigslisted it and got the iPad…which is a stellar tablet…but…I don’t do much reading on it, as there’s too much other fun stuff to do that’s just a button press away.
The majority of the books on my Kindle were EPUB files that I converted into MOBI files with Calibre.
Calibre is freeware, it’ll convert pretty much anything into MOBI format which Kindle displays perfectly, and it means that I can read anything from pretty much any file format on my Kindle. Though PDF conversions will usually be unreadable, it doesn’t matter that much since the Kindle will display PDFs, so if PDF is the only format you can find, it’s do-able.
When I decided I wanted an ebook reader, I did some research into file formats and so on because I didn’t want to be tied in to Amazon’s proprietary file format. I’m not. I went for a Kindle because they seem to have the best quality e-ink display and readability.
I definitley did not and do not want a backlit reading device, having looked at and rejected as horrible the iPad and suchlike devices. I read for hours at a time, most days. Those backlit things are simply not as usable as a Kindle; they’re toys, not real reading devices. No doubt some people will disagree, but that’s my honest opinion as a hardcore book-addict.
That sounds about right. I have a first gen Kobo. I liked all the freeware classics that came with it. That was a nice touch. It’s not wireless but while on vacation I bought a book on my blackberry and beamed it over using bluetooth. Wasn’t that hard.
My mum hate hate HATES how the screen does that weird “negative shot” just before it flips pages, but it doesn’t bother me. It’s a point of contention between us. I’d test it out before you buy one.
I received a Kobo for Christmas and it lasted less than a week.
(Turns out that a mental note to be really careful not to step on it when placing it on the floor beside the head of your bed is kind of pointless when you have a toddler.)
That said, in that short week I really grew to love it. I wouldn’t consider an LCD-based reader, and I found that the Kobo is the best size for my usual use: Reading on my back in bed. I’ve looked at other readers in considering a replacement and haven’t seen anything that I liked as much anywhere near my price point.
Still haven’t got around to replacing it, but I bought my wife one and she loves it. I expect to have my own again when the tax refund comes through.
I agree with everything you’ve written. I have both the Kindle DX and the iPad, and actually did a side-by-side comparison on many features, and in three environments; bright sunlight, indoors day time, and night time in bed.
The Kindle wins in bright light (by far), and indoors (by a little). The iPad wins for bed time reading, but although iPad fan boys and girls will deny it, it is more stressful on the eyes to read on the iPad than on the Kindle, especially for more than an hour, and especially when there’s no ambient light. After a while, I almost feel my ocular nerve endings pulsate. As I said in a different thread, I don’t read books on my iPad anymore. The Kindle is simply a superior eReader. Now, if I could only find something to actually do with my iPad I’d be all set.
Also, as you said, I can convert just about any file type into a format readable by my Kindle with Calibre, so those who say library books are not readable on the Kindle have a different experience than I do.
Kobo isn’t particularly tied to Borders; it relies on the epub file format, which is open to all. So Borders’ bankruptcy problems don’t have to be a deterrent.
I’ve had a Kobo since last June and I’ve actually never used the Borders ordering interface. I’ve ordered from Kobo’s own web site in Canada and from Baen Books, as well as loading free epub files from Baen Free Library, Gutenberg and the Internet Archive. No problems so far.