Electronic readers, or ereaders, are not exactly new technology. The Kindle and Nook have been available for years, and the iPad functions as an ereader, and just about every smartphone can fill the role of reader as well. Of course, every device has good points and bad points, mostly with regards to price and multitasking capabilities. In fact, the rarity in today’s technology market is the device that only fits one unique need. The Kobo E Reader is just that. This is a device built for reading. Users can expect no GPS, no apps, and no media playing capabilities in the Kobo e Reader. For the most part the Kobo reviews quite well, but as the folks at Engadget have also found out, lacks in a pretty crucial area.
The tech specs on the Kobo electronic reading device features five different type settings for size, which means just about everybody will be able to see the virtual print with ease. The unit also allows for selection between two different styles. The eink screen is antiglare and really does make help users forget they are looking at an electronic device. The Kobo comes ready to handle 1000 ebooks, and can be expanded via SD card (up to 4GB) to accommodate around four thousand, which is a fairly heft amount of reading. Of course having access to that many books means keeping tracking of them as well, and the Kobo offers a few different ways to sort titles: date last read, author, and title. The ebooks on the Kobo also feature a handy table of contents, which makes navigating the ebook a breeze. Plus, the “quilted” soft tacky back of the device allows for easy handling, which is pretty impressive. Navigation is performed by one direction pad and a few buttons on the console. Since this is a bare bones unit, it sells for around $150.
The biggest problems with the Kobo are two simplistic ones. Firstly, lack of a screen saver causes the eink screen to burn in rather quickly. Secondly, the page refresh rate is slow, as the folks at Engadget point out for a device that only performs ereading this is a fairly critical part of the reading process, and does distract from what should be a pleasant experience. Still even for the low price, there are just better ereader options available, but this is by no means the worst reader on the market either. The comfortable back and easy sorting ability make it a winner, plus the simple interaction via USB connection with the PC are eager to appeal to anyone just breaking into the technology. All things considered the Kobo is a cool, if not one-dimensional, piece of equipment. This simplicity is the main selling point, and it does excel.