So, I’m buying The Girl an eReader for X-mas. I don’t have one myself and have never actually seen one in the wild. The Kindle gets a lot of push, as does the Sony. I’m thinking that a wireless reader will be around $250, but which is the best in terms of readability and texts that are available for download? Gazing into our crystal ball, which will become obsolete soonest?
I’ve used a Kindle 2 and absolutely adored some things about it and hated other things about it (I didn’t find it especially ergonomic, which is a deal-breaker for me because of RSI issues, but most people I don’t think would have that problem). The Whispernet was a thing of beauty. Yes, you can change the font size for books, which is also a major draw. The amazon format is proprietary, which kind of sucks, and I’m sure someone will bring up that you don’t actually own the books (blah blah 1984).
You might look into the Barnes and Noble Nook, which has some really spiffy features (touch screen, SD card, Google books)… it also has wifi. The main drawback for you is that I believe (though I’m not sure) that they might not actually be available for Christmas.
I would recommend against the Sony, which in my particular crystal ball is already half obsolete. But perhaps others have different opinions on that.
A comparison of the Kindle and Nook is here. If I were assigning points, the Nook would win, but the way he assigns them the Kindle wins - depends a lot on what your (girlfriend’s) priorities are.
I’ve got two Nooks on order (Yay! I’m getting Nooky for Christmas!). They seem to have the best features, and I particularly like that they use the Android OS (so I’m hoping for a lot of third-party mods). It’s also nice that the battery and the memory are exposed to the user. Mine is supposed to ship on the 18th, just in time for Christmas travel. I’m already using the Barnes and Noble e-reader iPhone app.
The only thing I don’t like about it is that it doesn’t use the Amazon library, which I freakin’ love. A few minutes ago, I checked to see if Let the Right One In is available in e-book format… Amazon has it, B&N does not. This saddens me.
Hubby has an age-old grudge against Amazon, so wouldn’t buy a Kindle on a dare; I do believe he’s getting me a Nook for Christmas, though, and I am psyched! The ability to share e-books appeals to me greatly!
I currently have a Sony PRS-505 (last year’s model). I absolutely love it and haven’t missed wireless functionality at all. The thing holds hundreds of books AND has expandable memory, I’ve never come close to filling it and can’t imagine a situation where I run out of books and need another book desperately on the go.
I wish I had held out for the PRS-600 (this year’s mid range Sony). It has a touch screen which seems like it would be super handy (after using my iPhone a lot, I sometimes try to navigate my Reader like a touch). It also has a built-in dictionary I think is too cool, you touch a word on the page and can access the dictionary definition.
Things I like: long lasting battery, gorgeous screen, can play music (handy for planes so I only have to have a single device).
Sony is coming out with a wireless version sometime soon, the PRS-900. It will have wireless access via AT&T 3G network, it’s touch too. I think price-wise, if I were going to upgrade, I would still go with the PRS-600. I love touch and don’t personally need wireless.
My favorite thing about Sony readers and why I’m a huge fan - they are working hard to integrate into library systems. They read the ePub format which is what libraries and Google books use. Not a ton of books are digitized right now, but more and more books are being added. I will use my Reader more when I can get more books from the library (nearly 95% of my reading is via the library).
I am super anti-Kindle because of their proprietary format. The Kindle reads amazon books and doesn’t play well with other formats. I have heard that the Nook also reads ePub, but I am not sure.