Which Ereader Is For You?


Being an author with The Wild Rose Press, a publisher predominantly focused on digital books, (they also offer longer novels in print), I’ve gathered information on the various ereaders you can download ebooks to (in addition to computers of course). I’m also making this study for myself because I’m still reading on my laptop.  How to choose an e-reader?  This is a rapidly changing industry with improved technology emerging all the time.  The digital world is exploding, making this an exciting time to be an author and a reader.  For purposes of this post I will focus on the top readers but there are others and new ones on the horizon.  Let me know if you prefer another. Bottom line, ebooks are cheaper than paperbacks and ereaders are handy, transportable and hold a virtual library at your fingertips.

Amazon’s Kindle remains the giant in the e-reader industry, although others are closing in on that market.  Kindle has a huge range of book titles to choose from, upwards of 250000, and growing.  That’s a vast selection.

Pros and Cons of the Amazon Kindle 2.0 From this site:

The Amazon Kindle 2, released in February of 2009, is more curvy and symmetrical than the original, and its new screen displays 16 shades of gray. Amazon says page turning is 20% faster and the Kindle 2 model features a 5-way joystick to help navigate the pages. Kindle 2 also talks to you (if you want it to), featuring a text-to-speech function with your choice of three reading rates and a male or female voice. In July, 2009, Amazon lowered the Kindle’s price from $359 to $299; and just three months later, the price was further reduced to $259.

Kindle: The Pros

  • Downloading: Books from the Kindle store are downloaded via Sprint’s EV-DO (Evolution/Data Optimized) network. It means you can order and download content from most locations in the US. And there’s no charge for the wireless connection: It’s built into the cost of the books. With other portable readers, you must download books to your computer and transfer them to the readers via USB. The Kindle 2 is now available in an international wireless version for $279.
  • Battery: Kindle 2 uses the E-Ink screen, which produces no light and thus uses no power. The newest version of Kindle will give you four days of reading with the wireless connection on. Turn off the wireless and the Kindle 2 will work for two weeks without a ccharge.
  • Capacity: With its built in internal memory, Kindle can hold about 1,500 books, and accepts an external 4GB SD memory card. Other readers take up to a 2GB SD card.
  • Readability: Kindle’s E-Ink Vizplex screen is designed to make the page look like it’s from a real book. It’s effective in most light levels and it’s easy on the eyes.
  • Content: The Amazon connection brings you the easy-to-use Kindle Store, offering 230,000+ titles, the largest eBook library anywhere. You can also subscribe to major newspapers and magazines and read blogs on the Kindle. Amazon also allows you to download samples of books and periodicals to help you decide whether you want to buy them.
  • Controls: The Kindle’s page turners are on both left and right sides.
  • Search and Notes: The built in keyboard allows both functions.
  • Compatibility: Accepts lots of file formats; and lets you convert your own writing to Kindle’s proprietary AZW format.

Kindle: The Cons:

  • Cost: No longer a factor, since Kindle’s repricing to $259. It’s now the same as competitive models.
  • Readibility: While we pointed out it can be read at most light levels, Kindle can’t be read in the dark. To do that, you would have to purchase an accessory reading light.
  • Ergonomics: Greatly improved in Kindle 2. Controls are better designed and are in logical places.
  • Black-and white screen: Don’t expect an iPhone-like display on your Kindle. Color is not yet within the capabilities of the E-Ink technology.
  • Screen: Screen size is relatively small–meaning more page turning than with real books.

Sony’s Reader Touch:  info from this site:

Pros:

What I love about the reader touch is that you can add your own books from any source unlike the Kindle, which restricts you to only books purchased off of Amazon. The reader touch supports many formats, including the two most popular, PDF and Epub.

If you’re reading a book for class, you may know how important it is for highlighting and annotating in your books. The reader touch offers the aforementioned capabilities right on the device. Aside from being able to highlight and annotate your books, there’s also a built in dictionary. This is my favorite feature of the whole thing.

Another feature that I love about the reader touch is that you can upgrade the memory by purchasing a memory stick and inserting it into the provided slot. This allows you to hold even more books in case you’re an avid reader.

The reader touch itself is extremely thin weighing only 10 ounces. The weight is great for traveling. Most people who travel for business can go through several books. Carrying around all those books can be extremely cumbersome. With the reader touch, you can store all those heavy books into this lightweight device.

The battery life is amazingly long. Fully charged, the reader touch lasts up to two weeks. This is great for short business trips because you won’t have to worry about carrying around a charger that will take up extra space.

Cons:

What I really dislike about the reader touch is that you have to provide your own internet connections. Unlike the Kindle and Nook which both come with a built in wireless connection, you have to purchase your own wireless connection through a service provider. What this means is you’re paying extra for the convenience of being able to purchase books on the go. In order to store books onto the device, you’ll need to purchase it from your computer and then load it onto the reader.

Barnes&Noble’s Nook: Pros and Cons from this site:

nook: The Pros

  • Color touchscreen: Like other wireless readers, nook has a black-and-white E-Ink screen for displaying books and magazines. But underneath the reading screen is a smaller color screen that lets users browse their collection and choose what to read. The 3.5″ color LED screen also features a keyboard for navigation.
  • Share your books: This is the first ebook reader that lets you “lend” books to family and friends. The lent books can be accessed through computers and smartphones. You can lend a book for two weeks, during which time it’s unavailable to you. At the end of the two weeks, it reverts back to the owner.
  • Android operating system: The nook is the first portable reader to operate under Android, Google’s OS for mobile devices. Since Android is open source, outside developers will be able to customize special applications for the nook, a la Apple’s iPhone apps. Nook also allows users to access existing apps for Android devices.
  • Wi-Fi access: Besides being able to download books over a wireless 3G connection, the nook also lets you do the same via Wi-Fi. For now it only works on the Wi-Fi systems at Barnes & Noble stores, but plans are to offer it on other systems.

nook: The Cons

  • Battery life: The nook can operate for ten days on one battery charge. The Kindle runs up to 14 days.
  • No text-to-speech feature: Nor does the nook include a web browser. Both features are available on the Kindle.

nook: The Bottom Line

Priced at $259, the same as Kindle, the nook should give Amazon a run for its money. And Barnes & Noble, which has almost 800 retail locations, has the advantage of letting prospective buyers eyeball the devices before purchasing.

E-reader comparison from this site:

Tech It Out

Updated: Wednesday, 10 Feb 2010, 8:52 AM EST
Published : Wednesday, 10 Feb 2010, 8:51 AM EST

MYFOXNY.COM – Tech experts say the e-reader is one of the hottest gadgets of 2010. Sales are expected to double this year, but there are still a lot of people wondering just what an e-reader really does.

The interesting thing about e-readers is that they really do appeal to people who are not really gadget hounds. If you read a lot of material and love having it available to you whenever you want it, e-readers are fantastic.

Some of the most popular e-readers on the market right now: Amazon’s Kindle 2Barnes & Noble’s Nook and Sony’s newest e-reader the Daily Edition.

The Kindle is the clear market leader. It accounts for about 80% of e-book sales and until a few months ago had very little competition. The kindle has the largest selection of new books and bestsellers…

The Kindle also has more newspapers and magazines than the competition, but for now you’re pretty much limited to what’s available in Amazon’s bookstore. The same is true for the Nook. In this case, it’s the Barnes & Noble bookstore.

You can walk into any Barnes & Noble and use their WiFi to read any e-book they have, the entire thing, just like you were reading a book in the store. Nook users can also lend their books to each other.

The Sony bookstore is not as impressive as the other two but this e-reader has a neat trick up its sleeve. The Daily Edition, is the first Sony to have 3G wireless and you can borrow books from your local library.

As for the physical differences among these three devices, the Kindle is probably the simplest. The Nook has two screens — on top it has a screen like the Kindle that uses e-ink technology — which is thought to be much easier on the eyes than a computer screen — but the strip on the bottom is a touch screen.  It looks neat but it can get a little confusing to use.

****

Some people also read digital books on their ipod Touch and iPhones. For more on using these devices visit: http://www.readyaimread.com/

I’ve also heard mention of reading Ebooks on your palm pilot.  Others use their Blackberry.  For more on turning your Blackberry into an Ereader visit this site.

Are you swimming in techno information?  I am, but this should give you something to consider.  I’m still pondering which I prefer.  Maybe even a lighter weight laptop.

All of my books are available in digital download from The Wild Rose Press,Amazon , Barnes&Noble, Fictionwise, Sony, All Romance Ebooks and many many more online booksellers.  If you’ve never visited The Wild Rose Press you’re in for a treat.  Their online store is constantly expanding, adding new features and additional download capabilities for digital books.  Their newest and most exciting advance is that all 2010 releases will be available in MOBI format recommended for your KINDLE eBook Reader.  And if you wish to read a MOBI file on your computer, just download it free from MobiPocket.com

More on the Kindle from Amazon:

*Note: Somewhere My Lass came out in May and Red Bird’s Song will come out September 10th.  Also, get yourself some kind of Ereader because Somewhere My Lass is exclusively available as a digital book–not quite long enough to meet the minimum print word count for The Wild Rose Press.  And if I do say so myself, it’s a super story you won’t want to miss. 🙂

BREAKING NEWS as of June 22nd! Amazon lowered their price on Kindle! Lower than Sony’s e-reader now.

*You might also be interested in a more recent related post: ‘Which Ereader is Best, Kindle or Nook?’

28 responses to “Which Ereader Is For You?

  1. Hey Beth,

    This was a very informative post—I’ve had every intention of comparing the e-readers as I’m in the market for one myself—as an e-book author you’d think I’d have purchased one all ready.

    Unfortunately, I don’t have the patience to do comparison shopping so thanks for taking the time to list the pros and cons of each e-reader.

    Ciao!
    :0)

    Like

  2. Sure, and thanks!

    Like

  3. One avid reader informed me that she uses her iPod Touch and she says Kindle downloads to it just fine. It took a few tries to get used to the small page size, but before she knew it, she was flipping through it without feeling the least put upon. She adds that the application lets you adjust print size, too. The dangerous part is the one-click Amazon downloads–lethal for impulse book buyers! But she loves using the smaller unit. It’s a lot easier on her arthritic hands, and fits in her purse or pocket, awesome.

    Like

  4. This comment accidentally ended up under the wrong post: From Jody
    jawisrwa@gmail.com
    99.188.220.205
    2010/03/04 at 12:19am

    Thanks for the great comparison. As a new generation Kindle user one of the things you didn’t mention and I am not sure this is unique to the Kindle is the ability to download pdf files from my computer. I like this because if I am working on wip I can create a pdf file an download to my Kindle. I haven’t tried it yet, but have downloaded a pdf file of an out of print google book. This is an advantage to me who does a lot of research.

    Like

  5. Another reader told me that she has a Pocket PC – from 2003 – taped together she loves it so much. She even has 2 backups and will replace it only with something similar – can read LIT, PDF, Word and use Excel spreadsheets.

    Like

  6. Another reported that she has a Kindle and the Kindle app. on her Blackberry and really likes both, especially as, somehow, when she reads from her cell phone, then goes to her Kindle, it is exactly at the part where she left off on her cell, and vice versa. Amazes her to no end

    Like

  7. Thanks for the great info. I have a Sony E-Reader and I really enjoy it. I would like for it to have internet capability though, like the Kindle. I understand they are working on that.

    Scarlet

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  8. thank you for sharing this information … nice

    Like

  9. I have both the ebookwise and the Sony Pocket Edition and I adore both of them for different reasons.

    The ebookwise was the first one I got and I love it because it’s backlit so I can turn off the lamp in the bedroom and read it just from the light of the reader. The font size is adjustable, so the tireder I get, the bigger the font gets (LOL).

    I won my Sony, so I love it, too! It fits conveniently in my purse and is smaller than the ebookwise – both in length and width. However, it’s NOT backlit, which is something I miss on the Sony.

    I highly recommend either one.

    Like

  10. Hey Beth,
    Thanks for a great post. I’m in the market for a reader, too, and am waffling between the Sony 300, the Sony Touch and the Nook. I don’t care about wifi access (I really don’t need to make it TOO easy to buy books LOL). I’m actually leaning toward the Sony 300 because it’s so reasonably priced. I’ll let you know what I decide.

    :)Becky

    Like

  11. Please do let me know, Becky, and how you like it.

    Like

  12. Very informative post, Beth! I’m still up in the air about which e-reader I want, but I do want one.

    What’s stopping me right now is the price, but since I have e-books stored in my computer that I haven’t read yet, because I don’t want to sit at my desk to read them, eventually I’ll have to cave and buy one.

    Like

  13. I have the fictionwise e-book reader. While it is a little larger than the sony and Kindle and is in black and white print only, the price can’t be beat. I paid $100 for mine two years ago and have used it everyday since I purchased it.
    They are often on sale and can be purchased for as low as $89. from the ebookwise site. The site has one of the largest collections of e-books and the prices are excellent. Again they often have sales on the books and give free ones from time to time as well.

    The reader has a 64mb capacity so holds a large number of books. You can go to the fictionwise site and redownload a book you already purchased any time you want so don’t have to keep them on your reader if you don’t want to. It recharges in an hour and the charge is good for 18 hours.
    The writing is clear and the size of print adjustable. It has a great dictionary and many other features as well. One feature I like is that you can download a word file so you can actually put your own book on your reader.

    Cons: a little larger than the others weighs about one pound or a little less.
    : It does not download PDF files or some of the other companies. Their books have their own format that is compatable with the reader so you must buy from fictionwise site or compatable site.
    :No sound
    :black and white only

    PROs : Price of reader is best you will find
    : While you are limited to buying from fictionwise, they are one of the largest e-book suppliers and have almost every book you might want from large publishing houses to very small ones.
    :books are reasonably priced and can be redownloaded as needed.

    Like

  14. Beth, I loved this blog! I had no idea how to compare the e-readers. I forwarded the link to this blog to a gazillion people. Okay, maybe that’s a slight overstatemetn. 🙂 You might be interested to know that Kindle is due to improve the voice on their Kindle Audio reader. My friend whose husband has macular degeneration is waiting for the improved model. The update involves a more normal sounding voice with inflections instead of the robot-monotone that sounds like the weather station. She didn’t have an exact date for the improvement’s release, but was informed it was in the “next year.” This feature will only be available on the more pricey Kindle, not the basic version. Still, for those who can afford it, that should make listening to books while driving more interesting, as well as a great aid for book lovers with eye problems.

    Caroline Clemmons

    Like

    • Very good to know Caroline, and thanks so much for sharing that. I’m endeavoring to gather all the info I can.

      Like

  15. Pingback: Sony Reader Pocket Edition Book – Dark Blue New Compare Prices

  16. Pingback: Breaking News~Somewhere My Lass Release Date! « One Writer's Way

  17. Author Betty C. Blevins

    Somewhere My Lass by Author Beth Trissel

    I, Author Betty C. Blevins will definitely recommend this book, available exclusively in digal download by The Wild Rose Press. Somewhere My Lass, in my personal opinion is especially for historical fiction fans and all true romantics, like myself. This is a great story, and I am looking forward to reading more from Beth Trissel. I give this book two thumbs up!
    ~Author Betty C, Blevins~
    June 10, 2010

    Like

  18. Hi! Excellent web blog, thanks for sharing the info! one for my bookmarks.

    Like

  19. It’s Oct. 10th 2010 and I’m chiming in to say that I got a Kindle a month ago and wish I’d gotten a Sony Ereader. I have a whole library of ebooks on my laptop and cannot for the life of me get them onto my kindle. The kindle is great if all you intend to read are kindles. No problem. But unless you’re more gifted than I and my college aged daughter and her friend at transferring those other books, good luck. Plus, Amazon never answered any of my emails asking for help. So I may be giving my kindle away to some less discerning soul for Christmas and reading on my laptop until I get a different ereader. If, however, I figure out how to get my books onto the kindle then I will feel much better about it and will return here to make amends. Until that happens, I say get something else!

    Like

  20. Beth, I got a Kindle for my birthday a couple of days before you did. I got all my books onto the Kindle, including yours. I love it! It takes any form from a Word.doc to PDF to Kindle. I’ve not had any problems with it so far. If you need help getting your books onto the Kindle, send me an email. My husband will guide you step by step as he’s the one who put my books on for me. You know I’m a technophobe. LOL

    Like

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