With Christmas approaching, I’m again being asked what I want and my mind keeps drifting to an e-reader. No…I don’t have one yet. Never even tried reading a book on one. And the battle rages on which is better the Kindle or Sony.
The Kindle can store 1, 500 e-books, is slim, longer battery life and has an Amazon library of ten of thousands of e-books, newspapers and magazines. Font changeable, Mac and PC ready, and Text-to-Speech lets you have the book read to you outloud. It also has an internet feature. Downside, no backlight (which I really want), it doesn’t have a protective case (which makes no sense to me) and you can’t get electronic library loans on it. Their official statement: Slim: Just over 1/3 of an inch, as thin as most magazines. Lightweight: At 10.2 ounces, lighter than a typical paperback. Books in Under 60 Seconds: Get books delivered wirelessly in less than 60 seconds; no PC required. 3G Wireless: 3G wireless lets you download books right from your Kindle; no annual contracts, no monthly fees, and no hunting for Wi-Fi hotspots.
Global Coverage: Enjoy 3G wireless coverage at home or abroad in over 100 countries. Paper-Like Display: Reads like real paper without glare, even in bright sunlight. Long Battery Life: Read for days without recharging. Read-to-Me: With the experimental Text-to-Speech feature, Kindle can read newspapers, magazines, blogs, and books out loud to you, unless the book’s rights holder made the feature unavailable. Free Book Samples: Download and read first chapters for free before you decide to buy.
The Sony Reader Daily Edition has free library e-book check outs, which is huge for me. I’ve always loved the library and here’s one more reason to use them. Their official words: Experience the freedom to wirelessly browse, purchase and download books from The eBook Store from Sony with free 3G wireless access. Measuring just 0.6" thin and weighing only 12.75 ounces, the Reader Daily Edition™ also features a 7" paper-like display and touch screen navigation. Carry hundreds of books at a time and enjoy your content in either portrait or landscape viewing modes. Plus, the Reader supports multiple formats including ePub and PDF while giving you access to over one million free public domain titles from Google Books.
Then there’s the cost, Kindle (Global) $259 and Kindle DX (US wireless) $489. Sony Reader Daily Edition $399.
Readers seemed mixed, but most I talked to prefered the Sony. Now, I can get the Kindle for my iPhone, but the screen is super small for reading, but it is backlit. Then there’s the Apple’s strongly rumoured ‘tablet’ — a cross between an iPhone and a full computer. This sounds like something I’d might be interested in. Guess I’ll just have to wait and see.
Then there’s the whole problem with wanting to lend people books you’ve read on your e-reader. Easy to do with a paper book, but lots of questions with an e-reader.
Maybe I’m just not ready for an e-reader or just need to wait for the perfect one to come along.
How about you? Do you own one? Do you want one? Are they worth the money? Can anything really replace a well worn book?
Bottom Line: I’d rather have a Wii system for Christmas this year anyway. (I really hope my kids are reading this.)