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Posts tagged e-readers

What Special Reading Features Do You Actually Use on Your Devices?
September 6, 2013 | 11:38 am

readingThe new Kindle Paperwhite, announced this week, has some interesting features. I hadn't given much thought to the "extra" features my devices and reading apps offered beyond the basic dictionary lookup stuff lately, but some of this new Kindle stuff sounds interesting. On the other hand, my Kobo has some nice features, too. I'm not ready to upgrade just yet—the first person who makes an ePub-supported mini with a light will probably get that purchase—but I have to admit, I drooled a little at some of the features the new Kindle boasts. I'm not sure how many people are actually "serious" enough...

New Kindle Paperwhite Now Available for Pre-order: Should you upgrade?
September 5, 2013 | 12:35 pm

We've thought it was coming soon. Paperwhites were going out of stock, and it was getting close to the time Amazon typically releases new devices. They are now available for pre-order. So the question is, as always, should I upgrade? While it looks like a nice device, and it is the same price as the original Paperwhite, it does look like an incremental upgrade. The screen is supposed to be higher contrast, and they say they've improved the integrated light. That's a good thing. Lots of people were unhappy with the original light, although, to be fair, it wasn't always clear if...

Dedicated E-Readers vs. Tablets: The ongoing discussion
September 5, 2013 | 12:32 pm

I just read an interesting article by Ryan Cordell about why he's started carrying his Kindle with him instead of his tablet. Obviously he can have the Kindle app on his tablet, so why just the Kindle when the tablet can do so much more? Well, that's exactly the reason: Because the tablet can do so much more, he found he wasn't using his train ride to read. He was playing games, checking Facebook and doing almost everything except reading. I'm noticing this myself. I've fallen in love with Marvin as a reading app on my iPad. However, when I've got my...

Ouch! Text to speech is also AWOL from this year’s Amazon Paperwhite
September 3, 2013 | 4:18 pm

Amazon PaperwhiteDrat! The newest Kindle Paperwhite E Ink reader from Amazon is still missing text to speech—among the features Jeff Bezos touted when he unveiled the second Kindle in 2009. Doubt me? Just look at the Paperwhite users guide and see what’s AWOL. Click here for a better view, with a list of not-overlooked improvements in the newer Paperwhite model. It’s to start shipping Sept. 30. Like the first Paperwhite, the basic version will sell for $119 and up, and supposedly the newer PWs will offer “higher contrast” between text and background. I found last year’s Paperwhites to be still somewhat lacking in contrast despite a noticeable improvement over earlier models. On...

A First Look at Indigo Tech!
August 29, 2013 | 2:14 pm

Indigo Tech Indigo Tech is open for business! I snapped these pics today at my local store, and it's about what I expected: a fancier Kobo kiosk, iPads and more! The various wall displays have headphones, speakers, health products such as the Fitbit, iPad creative accessories like a Crayola effects pad, and cases and accessories. The dedicated staff person moved back and forth between the main display and the separate Kobo area. I already have an iPad, and none of the displayed accessories caught my eye. But there are more Indigo stores than Apple stores, so maybe they're hoping to use that to bring...

My Kobo Wishlist
August 29, 2013 | 8:45 am

KoboIf you read yesterday's Morning Roundup, you saw the news about the new Kobo releases—a new Glo-sized Aura, and two new tablets, one of them a 10-incher. Amongst the fine print were also refreshes of the bookstore (with a customized portal for kids and some rudimentary parental controls) and the Reading Life platform (with Pocket integration). Sounds good, right? Well...yes. Sort of. My nearly year-old Glo is a nice piece of tech, don't get me wrong, but I can't help but feel like Kobo is focusing on the wrong sorts of improvements. What should they be doing better? Here are my top suggestions...

Morning Roundup: Kobo launches a fleet of new devices
August 28, 2013 | 9:02 am

KoboKobo Launches Fleet of New Devices, Kids eBook Store, Partnership with Pocket (Digital Book World) International ebook retailer and device-maker Kobo has launched a new fleet of e-reading and tablet devices along with an ebook store for children and a partnership with content aggregator Pocket — all aimed at helping Kobo win the fight for “people who have reading at the center of their lives,” according to Kobo chief content officer, Michael Tamblyn. * * * Can Slow-Moving Universities Adapt Quickly Enough to Change in the Digital Age? (Media Shift) The start of classes this fall will also bring renewed debate about what journalism and...

Waterstones has charitable pound covered with limited-edition Terry Pratchett Kindle cases
August 27, 2013 | 9:26 am

Waterstones in the UK is doing more to explore the intersection of the physical and the digital, as well as capitalizing on its high-profile relationship with Amazon, by running two limited edition Kindle cases from star author and Alzheimer's sufferer Terry Pratchett , including a special signed edition with all its sales profits going to Alzheimer's Research UK. The signed edition comes in a run of only 150 numbered copies, each at £100 ($156). "The linen cover featuring Josh Kirby's artwork from the Discworld novel Mort, originally published in 1987, has genuine leather lining and trimming, with Sir Terry's signature mounted on...

Disconnecting Completely For the First Time In Years
August 26, 2013 | 3:33 pm

Everyone loves to write about disconnecting while on vacation, and about whether it's a good idea or a bad one. (Uh, yes, I do put myself in the category of loving to write about it.) Anyway, my husband and I just got back from a week-long camping trip where we disconnected completely. I'd like to say it was for some profound moral or spiritual reason, but it was actually because we were camping in a park that had no cell signal and no Wi-Fi. Can you believe it? In 2013? And we didn't leave the country. Heck, we didn't even leave...

Barnes & Noble makes UK blooper with promo deal ad censure
August 22, 2013 | 10:38 am

Already under fire for its incoherent policy on tablets and e-readers and its continuing missteps versus Amazon, Barnes & Noble has just been formally criticized by the UK's Advertising Standards Authority over its recent promotion of discounts on the Nook e-reader to £29.00 ($45.23), for failing to ensure "sufficient availability of the product at the advertised price." The silver lining, if any, for B&N is that at least the unanticipated response shows how high the demand for e-readers can be—at the right price point. The original—shown here courtesy of The Guardian—ran in the last week of April 2013 in the UK press, stating: "Only £29 RRP...

Barnes & Noble’s UK sales strategy is working better than I expected
August 16, 2013 | 2:30 pm

Nook Simple TouchI'm often highly critical of Barnes & Noble. Part of the reason for that is due to the fact that because I love their hardware, I cringe when they make what appear to be stupid and short-sighted decisions. I also want at least one strong Amazon competitor. I don't think Amazon having the vast majority of the e-book market is a good thing. So a few months ago, when I saw Barnes & Noble had deeply discounted its Nooks in the UK, I cringed. Imagine my surprise when I read a recent Forbes blog post that seemed to show I had cringed...

The cost of books, versus the cost of other things
August 13, 2013 | 3:00 pm

George_Orwell_press_photoSalon Magazine has an interesting piece by Kaya Genç, reprinted from the L.A. Review of Books, comparing the cost of reading to other things, following in the footsteps of George Orwell who in “Books v. Cigarettes” calculated that he spent £25 per year on books but £40 per year on cigarettes. At first the piece looked like it was going to be another one of those “smell of books” stories, with the writer indulging in nostalgia over the printed page in this digital era. But in fact Genç brings up the nostalgia for the printed page to explain how...