How to Choose Which eBook Reader to Buy?
If you’re asking about which eBook Reader to buy and if you’re planning on buying an e-reader this year than I’m sure you’ll notice that there are loads of eReader brands on the market randing forom the Kindle, Sony, Barnes and Noble, to the Kobo eReader and iPad2.
In this guide I’m going to provide some useful information to help you choose what sort of eBook Reader to buy. We’ll start with what exactly you expect to get out of your eBook Reader. At the end of this article I’ll compare traditional monochrome E-Ink ereaders with multi-colour tablets such as the iPad2 and Kindle Fire.
How to Choose Which eBook Reader to Buy?
You may want to read: What is the best ereader to buy
Size, Weight and Design of the eReader
It’s really important to figure out what you plan to do with your reader before you choose a size or design.
Although 70% of the market for eReaders are pretty much the same size (ie. Kindle, Kobo, Sony PRS-600 and the Nook), you still need to work out whether you want a bigger device for reading newspapers at home or a small, nimble device for taking on holiday with you.
In my opinion if you’re looking for an eReader to take on holiday than I’d opt for the Kindle (6.5″ x 4.5″ x 0.34″) or the Barnes and Noble Nook Touch Reader. Each of these devices has a good 6-inch display to read books, magazine and browse the Internet on on. Remember that these smaller devices are cheaper and last longer too. You can even buy the Sony Pocket Reader PRS-350 which has a smaller 5-inch screen.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, if you need the extra size screen to read newspapers/magazines (or analyse data/charts) then you could buy the more expensive Kindle DX (roughly 1.5x the size of the Kindle) or the iPad2.
Overall I think most people will be happy with a 6-inch screen and I would only recommend something bigger if you have reading difficulties or poor eye sight. Remember that you can still adjust the text size on these devices to make it easier to read books.
How much are you Looking to Spend for the e-reader?
One great thing about the eBook reader market is that the major sellers have slashed prices in the last year. Most basic eReaders with Wi-Fi will cost you under $100. The Kindle’s price for example has been reduced also in the last few months, while the Barnes and Noble and Sony eReaders have become more affordable for the masses.
If you’re willing to spend upwards of $200 than you can start looking at the multi-colour Tablets/eReaders such as the Kindle Fire or even the iPad 2. Remember that you’re paying higher prices for a much broader range of activities on tablets (for example, you can download and watch 30,000+ Films/TV shows on the Kindle Fire) so you need to decide is this is something you’re interested.
Personally speaking, I’d rather just buy a cheap Kindle eBook Reader for under $100 than waste more on an iPad2, which is practically the same price as most Laptops and Notebooks.
Monochrome E-Ink Display vs Multi-Colour LCD Screens
The majority of eBook Readers have monochromatic screens with the latest E-Ink Pearl technology. Trust me when I say you want to buy an E-Ink screen device if you plan to do a lot of reading. It generates high contrast images and makes text crisper and easier to read.
Most people are actually amazed when they first read a book on the Kindle or Kobo Reader and can’t tell the difference between read text off these screens and a regular book.
The disadvantages of buying a tablet or multi-colour eReader are that they use LCD and LED displays rather than E-Ink technology. This makes it harder to read, makes your eyes drowsier, increases glare and it limits the battery life to just 8-10 hours.
Battery Life and eBook Stores
If you’re travelling abroad and won’t be able to charge your eReader on a daily basis than I’d avoid buying a multi-colour eReader. These require charging every 8-10 hours (e.g. iPad2 and Kindle Fire). Instead you should opt for monochromatic E-Ink devices such as the Kindle and Kindle 3G, which will last up to 1 month on a single charge.
The choice of eBook stores and supported eBook formats is another really important factor for each device. Not all eReader support the same eBook formats. On the Kindle for example, you can only buy and download books from the Amazon Book Store. Although Amazon has over 2 million books to choose from you’ll still be limited to their prices and offers.
The Sony and Barnes and Noble devices on the other hand support a bigger range of formats such as ePub and plenty of free hosted eBooks such as Google’s book store. The iPad2 also lets you read and download books through its Kindle App, Barnes and Noble App and Apple’s own iBook Store.
Tablet vs eBook Readers
A significant revolution in the consumer electronics market has been the development of Tablets. Tablet devices are touch-screen, multimedia systems that allow you to watch movies, read books, play games and browse the Internet all in one.
Although I really like the iPad2, I think if you’re serious about reading books than you should buy an E-Ink eReader instead. Their sole purpose is to make reading comfortable and easier plus they’re much cheaper and the battery life is longer than your average tablet.
You can see here the best ebook readers according to reviews on Amazon.com
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