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Friday, 7 January 2011

Just to clear things up - the iPad is awesome but it's not an eReader

The iPad - a pocket computer
With the surge in eBooks and eReaders it surprises me to still find myself reading articles that list the iPad as an eReader, when this is not so. Whilst the iPad is a great piece of kit and you can read books on the thing it is not as well suited to reading as dedicated readers like The Kindle, Nook and Sony devices. For one thing most dedicated eReaders use a technology called eInk which perfectly mimics paper thus cutting down on eye strain and allowing the eBook to be read under the same conditions as a conventional book. The iPad does not use eInk and has a backlit screen that reproduces images in much the same way as a standard computer monitor. Conventional books do not have backlit pages and nor do most dedicated eReader devices.

The Sony - a dedicated eReader
This comes from The Huffington Post - "E-books are just one industry of many that has exploded partly due to the growth of tablet sales. Gartner Research predicted that the worldwide sale of electronic e-book readers (like the iPad, the Amazon Kindle, the Barnes and Noble Nook) has increased by 79 percent since 2009, with 6.6 million units in 2010 compared to 3.6 units in 2009. So many people are jumping on the e-book bandwagon because of the simplicity it presents. In most cases, you download an e-book and it's there at your disposal in minutes or even seconds. Another plus is that e-books are usually cheaper than print books, and some are even free."

As you can see they have placed the iPad in amongst all the other dedicated eReaders - all of the other devices listed are eReaders and use the eInk technology. The iPad then should not be considered if you are looking for a device solely for reading eBooks - mind you, the iPad is excellent for digital comic books.

Just wanted to clear that up - it may be picky but it annoys me to constantly see the iPad marketed as an eReader. I love my own iPad but I know if I tried to read a full length novel on the thing I'd be heading for Headache City.

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