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e Readers - Which is the "best" one?

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There are a host of e-readers on the market: See e-readers I'm beginning to consider getting one. Any one have experience with different kinds to say that one is better than another?

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There are a host of e-readers on the market: See e-readers I'm beginning to consider getting one. Any one have experience with different kinds to say that one is better than another?
It's hard, because once one has briefly tested out several alternatives and picked one, that is the one he knows. I love my Kindle 3, with 3G+WiFi. The subscription to AT&T for the WhisperSync wireless connection is free, so I'm hooked into the Amazon Kindle store whenever and where ever I need it. As a daylight reader for reading text, I think it is easily the best. It is light, thin, intuitive to operate, and the e-ink is very easy to read in any reasonable lighting situation. With the wireless turned off -- common when you've got the books you need and just want to read -- it'll last a month on a charge. The e-ink, once the screen has been rendered, draws no power. With the wireless on, it still lasts close to 2 weeks (haven't really hit that mark, yet). It charges quickly and the charging cable is light, nothing more than the USB cord and a thin wall adapter.

Amazon really gave serious readers exactly what they wanted and nothing more. It does have a browser for the internet, but it's little button keyboard is really not optimized for that purpose and I've only used it for that purpose in an emergency. But it does work. If you want color, for example, if you want to view magazines and rich graphics, this is definitely not the machine for the job. I would get an iPad (or some other tablet?) for that. If you want other such computer functions, such as calendar/appointment functionality, phone or notebook would do that much better. This is an e-Reader for e-books and it does that black-and-white job very well. You can buy most mass-market books off Amazon, although some are not available. For example, J.K. Rowling refuses to allow her Harry Potter books to be sold in electronic form. She likes physical books and she can afford to say no. Others, like many of the Goodkind books, for e.g., just aren't yet available for some other unknown reasons. But tens of thousands are. And public domain books that you can download for free in Aldiko (Androids or iPhone) are maybe a buck or less off Amazon. That would include things like, say, all the 19th Century classics, books like the Tarzan series, Alice in Wonderland, Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations, the Federalist Papers, etc. etc. That does raise an issue about your question, by the way. If you have a smartphone, you can download Aldiko and read pub domain books just fine. I did that for months before getting the Kindle. But, with the Kindle, if I leave it connected to the internet, I can bring any book on my Kindle up on the Droid's Kindle app and it will pop up sync'd with my Kindle. So, if you don't want to drag the Kindle to a restaurant or a Starbucks (or you forget it), you can just pick up where you left off on the phone and the Kindle will sync to that when you get back to it. And all of the books you purchase on Amazon are backed up with your account there. You can even email books to yourself via your "WhisperNet" address, but I've never done that.

I generally use my Droid for mobile web surfing and that sort of thing. But the battery life on the cellphone is a joke. The Kindle, you just throw in your bag and forget about it. You can charge it at your leisure on weekends, or whenever.

The down side to e-books for travel is that they don't allow you to use them for the first and last 20' of the flight. Quite annoying. Here I went way out of my way to buy one that's dedicated to pretending it's a book and they tell me to turn it off. I'm thinking of lodging a discrimination suit. It never saw itself as a computer. Yes', it had electrical surgery, but it now thinks it's a book and deserves to be treated like one.

As for the Nook and Kobo, they're back-lit, special-purpose computers, to my mind, and have the same disadvantages, the main one being battery life and ease on the eyes in daylight or room light. The Sony has the e-ink like the Kindle, but it's overpriced and doesn't have the wireless connectivity.

Those are my thoughts on the subject. If that kindles your interest, or your interest in Kindle, cool.

Note: I also bought their case with a built-in light, which works well enough for reading in bed, protects it well, looks classy, and doesn't add much in weight. That's another ca. $54, though.

There are also these cool analog books that are made out of paper, weight very little, easy to carry, and can be read all the way through a plane flight without incident.

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I have a new Kindle and it's amazing. The screen is very sharp, to the extent that the difference between real paper and the electronic text is vanishingly small.

The graphical user interface is black and white and quite primitive (like an advanced TI-89 calculator), but that is the genius of the kindle; because it is so simple, its energy use is essentially zero, and you'll get probably more than a month of use out of a single charging.

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There are a host of e-readers on the market: See e-readers I'm beginning to consider getting one. Any one have experience with different kinds to say that one is better than another?

I think eReaders are the 8-track players of this generation. They will be replaced in relatively short order by apps for tablets and smartphones. At the very least we'll see eReaders simply merge into the tablet market.

Granted, the apps available at present (at least on Andriod) only range from fair to terrible, but that will change.

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There are also these cool analog books that are made out of paper, weight very little, easy to carry, and can be read all the way through a plane flight without incident.

I have quite a lot of those. The battery life is incredible, but once your collection gets bigger than, say, 3 books you tend to have a problem with portability.

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It's unfortunate that those buying electronic books at this time need to choose their device/platform not just on features of the device, but based on predictions of the future of that particular e-book store/platform, because books are "protected" and can't be moved to other types of readers. As with protection on music (now eliminated) and movies, this has nothing to do with piracy (unprotected copies of books, movies, are readily available on file-sharing networks regardless), but rather is publishers wanting to make electronic books as unfriendly as they can get away with because e-books threaten their business model as gatekeepers to content.

It is true that this limitation will be rendered less significant, as piz points out, by reader applications on tablets and computers. (Make sure to pick a tablet which doesn't block, or de facto block by imposing unrealistic restrictions, other e-book reader applications from running on its tablet other than the one created by the tablet maker, as Apple has announced they will be doing with iPad.)

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I would say this one will be a serious contender for "best": http://www.plasticlogic.com/ereader/

Unfortunately, a British management team has meant they keep cancelling their launch to "improve" the product and as such probably have had the market swept from under their feet by Apple and Amazon (several corporations are already getting iPads for meetings). Add to that Sony seems to have developed the technology to a rudimentary extent and I am not sure we'll see much from Plastic Logic for a while.

Personally, I love the feel of a book in my hand, but judging from the above reactions to the Kindle and its amazing price, I would definitely pick it over the iPad (and may well do so this year).

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Here is a good article on why the 3G version of the Kindle might offer a lot of extra benefits to some people:

http://tynan.com/kindle

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I have a nook that I just love! I am currently reading Atlas Shrugged for the second time on my nook. I'm able to highlight sections & add notes to my highlights. It's great!

The nook is put out by Barnes & Noble Bookstores and is also available at Wal*Mart.

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I downloaded a free app from the Apple Store from which I can download Kindle books. There are free books there, so I downloaded one of the free ones, Sherlock Holmes. I can read it on my computer in a window that looks like the Kindle. I'll see if its something I can get into.

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I downloaded the free Kindle app to my iMac and my PC netbook. I'm reading the Autobiography of Ben Franklin, which I downloaded for free. So far, it's really nice. If some historical event is mentioned in the book, i just do a search on Google to find out what event he is talking about. Pretty cool. I'll have to see if I really need a Kindle device.

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They are changing and improving all the time. Try this website for comparisons.

Thanks. That was helpful.

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I downloaded the free Kindle app to my iMac and my PC netbook. I'm reading the Autobiography of Ben Franklin, which I downloaded for free. So far, it's really nice. If some historical event is mentioned in the book, i just do a search on Google to find out what event he is talking about. Pretty cool. I'll have to see if I really need a Kindle device.

What's nice is that the books will sync across devices. So imagine your Kindle is your main reader, but one day you're stuck in a line somewhere and read a few pages from your iPhone Kindle app, when you come back to your Kindle (as long as the wireless is on), it will sync to the furthest page read.

To answer the original question, I love the Kindle. The only improvement I would like is a version without a keyboard.

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I just got the Kindle 3 with WiFi and 3G from Best Buy. After setting it up, i downloaded the archived book I was reading and it opened up to the page I left off from my computer!! Amazing stuff.

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From books to ebooks. But before books ...

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I just got the Kindle 3 with WiFi and 3G from Best Buy. After setting it up, i downloaded the archived book I was reading and it opened up to the page I left off from my computer!! Amazing stuff.

It's an invention called a "bookmark". It's not magic :) They may have even used this idea with scrolls. :) When you pick it up again someplace else it still marks the spot where you left off. Same concept, but you need to expand your definition. :)

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From books to ebooks. But before books ...
That's one of my favorite YouTube videos. Here's the
(with 1 yr of tech support)

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What's really cool is that I can send highlighted passages to Facebook.

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What's really cool is that I can send highlighted passages to Facebook.

Which I see you have done with Ben Franklin's autobiography.

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What's really cool is that I can send highlighted passages to Facebook.

Which I see you have done with Ben Franklin's autobiography.

Yes. He was quite a guy. I think he helped define the American spirit.

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