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Friday, 30 March 2018

The eReader buyers guide: The Top Three Devices

More and more people are using their smartphone or tablet to read books.

However, there are still plenty of reasons why investing in a dedicated eReader is a good idea. They're a lot cheaper than an iPad, for example, and they’re simply a better tool for the task in hand, which is after all reading. They can also be lighter than a book, yet store thousands of books, so you can read your way through a fortnight-long holiday just by taking your eReader along.

Most eReaders have a 6in screen. It looks much like paper and is easier on the eyes than the colour LCD screen of a phone or tablet, and it won't stop you going to sleep like the blue light emitted from an LCD screen can, so eReaders are better for late-night reading.

This type of screen excels in bright sunlight, which can cause reflections on the glossy screens of other mobile devices. They are also an ideal size and weight to comfortably cradle for prolonged periods. Most modern eReaders have a touchscreen and weigh around 200g or less, so will happily slip into your bag or an oversized pocket for reading on the road.

Battery life is also much better on dedicated eReaders than tablets and smartphones, here measured in page turns rather than hours. So while your tablet could conk out halfway home, creating a genuine cliffhanger at the most inopportune point within your novel, an eReader could keep going for weeks or even months without needing a recharge.

So here is the Archive's guide to the top three eReaders currently available.

1 - In first place comes the Kindle Paperwhite - yes, I know that both the Kindle Voyage and Kindle Oasis are technically better devices but there is such a price difference that the Paperwhite is simply better value. The display is crystal clear and page turning, executed by a swipe of the screen becomes second nature after a little bit of use. The Paperwhite is the King of eReaders.

2 - Is the Kindle Oasis - this device has a bigger screen than the Paperwhite, is waterproof and allows audiobooks to be listened to via bluetooth, but it's a pricey device and given that eReaders are designed for reading books then it does not warrent the extra expense over the Paperwhite, which gives a flawless reading experience. If I was ranking these devices by their technical qualities then the Oasis would hold the top spot; it's likely the best eReader in the world today but I just think the Paperwhite does everything a reader needs and is almost half the price of the Oasis, so for that reason the Paperwhite wins out.

Amazon rule the roost when it comes to eReaders but Kobo's Aura One is good enough to take third place - it has a backlight, just like the Paperwhite and Oasis but loses out because it doesn't have access to Amazon's massive Kindle Books store. the Kobo store is lightyears behind Amazon's Kindle store, in terms of curation if not size, and you miss out on some of the Kindle features that make library management easier, such as free 3G and wide cross-device syncing.

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