Follow by email

Tuesday, 27 March 2018

You can teach an old dog new tricks: An Old Dude's Guide to reading on a Smartphone and Tablet

More and more readers are reading digital books on their Android devices - and for old timers like me, who may be a bit confused by that statement - UM, er what's an Android device? Well usually it's a smartphone or a tablet, though it can be other devices but let's keep it simple and stick to smartphones and tablets for the moment.

Now I'm not a complete luddite when it comes to digital books, and I wouldn't be without my KIndle paperwhite, but all the same the thought of reading on a phone screen seemed odd to me. I had concerns about eye-strain but you know using my Samsung s8 with a Kindle App is something I do more and more when I find myself with maybe five minutes to read, and I'm without my Paperwhite. The experience is good, damn good. Damn these kids come up with some good ideas these days.

Books can be heavy, expensive, and take up valuable space in a cramped rooms. Not you can store trillions, squillions, billions, willions in the cloud and call them to your phone when needed.

So below  are a list of APPS (all free) that can be downloaded to smartphones/tablets to make eReading simplicity. Simply go to the APP Store on your smartphone or tablet and search for any of these free APPS. Most of these APP's are also available for Apple's IOS system.



Amazon Kindle: You can use this app to read your favorite books, magazines and newspapers. This works on all compatible android devices and you need not have a Kindle device to use this eBook reader. One of the best things about this eBook reader is that it has a large library that has a collection of more than four million eBooks. Many of these eBooks are free, so you don’t have to pay even a single penny. You will be notified about new book releases and you can shop for these directly from the app. You can also sync your books to your other digital devices. Amazon Kindle features an in-built dictionary that allows you to search for words instantly while you are reading
.
Aldiko: This is one of the longest surviving eBook readers on Android and also one of the most popular. One of the best things about Aldiko is that it supports various file formats such as ePub, PDF and DRM encrypted files. Aldiko is preferred by people who want to use advanced customization such as adjusting the font type, font size, background color, margin, line spacing, alignment, brightness, etc. You can access Aldiko’s free eBook collection or buy new books with the in-app purchase feature.

MOON: While being able to purchase books from a major retailer and download them to your phone is awesome, sometimes the books you want to read are ones that you already have the files for. Whether you've picked up ebooks from an independent publisher, or you've gotten the files from a now-defunct program, being able to open and read them is key. That's where Moon+Reader comes in.
It has support for 12 different file formats, from .rar files all the way to .epub files. On top of that, you still are able to customize the way words look on the screen, lets you back up your library online, and gives you access to 5 auto-scroll options on top of plenty more fantastic features.


Universal Book Reader: This is a user-friendly eBook reader for Android. One of the prominent features of this app is that you can use it to convert various file types to ePub or PDF. The book reading experience is truly delightful with Universal Book Reader, as the page flipping animation is really smooth and stylish. Just like Kindle, this also has in-built dictionary, allowing you to instantly search for words.

Google Play Books: This is great for reading eBooks available on Google Play. You can also enjoy audiobooks that are now available on Google Play. The good thing about this app is that you have access to millions of bestselling e-books, comics, textbooks, and audiobooks. You can also upload your own eBooks in ePub format. Google Play Books will convert these in compatible format and make it available in the Play Books library.

Kobo: This allows readers to choose from more than 5 million eBooks and audiobooks. Users can choose free eBooks or buy new or existing eBooks using the in-app purchase feature. Kobo offers a range of customization options that make reading a pleasure. Navigation is smooth and lag-free. Kobo comes with a timer that you can use to program the app to shut down at the desired time. This is very useful when you may be listening to an audiobook while going to sleep.


And if you are reading on a smartphone here are some tips: (thanks to Michael Desjardin of Reviewed)


Calibrate your smartphone to save battery

Like any eReader, a smartphone's battery is destined to be drained quickly while the display is in use. Don't let getting lost in a good book cause you to lose your battery life—here are some quick and dirty tips for prolonging the life of your smartphone while you use it to read.
· Set your brightness accordingly. Consider using your phone's auto-brightness feature to adjust to the lighting conditions on-the-fly. If you're feeling really controlling, you could set your smartphone's brightness ahead of time and then turn off the auto-brightness feature (I find this works quite well on planes and trains).

· Take advantage of your reading app's color adjustments (if available). Many eReading apps give you the option to alter the colors of a book's pages. My favorite option (if you're using an app that offers such a thing) is to inverse the pages from black-text-on-white scheme to a white-text-on-black scheme. Your smartphone will thank you if it doesn't have to use as much juice to power a bright, white background for hours on end.

· Turn off your WiFi and mobile data while reading. This one seems obvious, but trust me: I forget to do it with embarrassing frequency. If you're on a train, bus, or plane all afternoon, there's no need for your phone to dedicate resources to a WiFi connection it's not using.

No comments: