eReader Comparison - Reviews and Ratings

eReader Rating Price Screen Formats Link to store
Kindle 4 Kindle 4 * * * * *
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Wi-fi only
$79
Screen size:
6" eInk

Touchscreen:
NO
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Kindle Touch Kindle Touch * * * * *
Read Full Review
Wi-fi only
$99
Wi-fi + 3G
$149
Screen size:
6" eInk

Touchscreen:
YES
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Kindle 3 Kindle 3 * * * * *
Read Full Review
Wi-fi only
$99
Wi-fi + 3G
$139
Screen size:
6" eInk

Touchscreen:
NO
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Nook Color Nook Color * * * * *
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Wi-fi only
$199
Screen size:
7" color LCD

Touchscreen:
YES
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Kindle DX Kindle DX * * * * *
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Wi-fi + 3G
$379
Screen sixe:
9.7" eInk

Touchscreen:
NO
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Kobo Touch Kobo Touch * * * *
Read Full Review
Wi-fi only
$129
Screen size:
6" eInk

Touchscreen:
YES
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Nook Nook * * * *
Read Full Review
Wi-fi only
$89
Screen size:
6" eInk

Touchscreen:
YES
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Pandigital Pandigital * * *
Read Full Review
Wi-fi only
$179
Screen size:
7" color LCD

Touchscreen:
YES
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Kobo Kobo * * *
Read Full Review
Wi-fi only
$99
Screen size:
6" eInk

Touchscreen:
NO
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Sony Reader Sony Reader * * *
Read Full Review
Wi-fi only
$279
Screen size:
6" eInk

Touchscreen:
YES
epub, pdf, txt, bbew, jpeg, png, gif, bmp Buy it here

eReader Comparison 2011

As we approach the new year and the speculations about eReaders 2012 has already begun, we want to summarize the eReading market so far. We have put together this section to help you choose the eReader that suits you the best.

Buying your first eReader can be a complex and potentially frustrating experience, with the competition getting increasingly fierce and the number of eReader features getting increasingly long. These ebook reader reviews contain immensely more than they would have in an eReader comparison 2010. Originally, these handy devices were almost uniformly compact, single-task, monochrome tablets that resembled closely the pages and form factor of a paperback book. But as the product has matured, disparities have emerged: some eReaders ship with keyboard, while others do not; some eReaders maintain the black and white screen, while a new class of eReaders ships with a color LCD screen. And the eReader itself is under increasing fire from Apple's iPad and Google's Android tablets.

When dealing with a technology niche that is evolving and maturing as quickly as eReaders currently are, perhaps the best way to make a solid decision is to consider all of the options and begin the extensive process of comparing eReaders. Taking time to compare ebook readers, as well as check the latest eReader reviews, is a good way to learn a device's pros and cons before experiencing them first-hand. It's also a great way to avoid securing the worst eReader on the market without knowing that has even one flaw.

What to Look For in an eReader

The disparities between eReaders generally fall in a few distinct categories: input method, screen type, physical size, and utility. Each of these categories can greatly alter not only how an eReader is used and where, but also how enjoyable the experience is and whether the device is suitable for long reads or shorter, more occasional reading.

A great way to get a handle of each of these differences between eReaders is by locating an eReader comparison chart online. These charts, which oftentimes compare five, ten, or an even greater number of eReaders, help to easily delineate each difference -- from screen type to device dimensions -- between each tablet.

What to Look For: The Screen

It's generally accepted than an eReader's screen should be at least six inches diagonally from top left to bottom right. This generally gives it about the same size as a printed page in a paperback book, and it allows for a comfortable number of text lines. Beyond this, the screen should be using eInk technology if it is in monochrome. This technology includes no backlight, no refresh rates, and looks much like the black and gray pages of a book.

Some eReaders are now shipping with full color LCD screens that closely resemble the LCD screens found in laptops and traditional tablets; in fact, some of those LCD screens are indistinguishable from the glossy type used in everyday computers. When shopping for a color eReader, be sure to look for eInk or Pearl technology which allows the color image to display with minimal backlighting and refresh times; this will ensure that no headaches arise after long periods of reading. The perk of an eReader is this type of screen, and going without one largely eliminates the reason for purchasing an eReading device over a traditional tablet.

What to Look For: Input Method

Any good eReader comparison chart should note whether the device uses a physical keyboard (typically located along the bottom of the device) or a touch-based input method that uses a touchscreen. You will want to pay special attention to this feature when comparing eReaders, as touch-sensitive screens can be especially cumbersome and hard to learn for those who have never owned a touch-enabled device before. It may be a better idea, as a first-time eReader purchaser, to choose a physical keyboard.

These physical keyboards, such as the full QWERTY keyboard found on many Amazon Kindle devices, works just like the full-size keyboard included with any desktop or laptop. The buttons are fixed and pressed, and there's no guess work or learning the "proper way" to touch the screen in order to generate a response.

What to Look For: Physical Size

When you compare eReaders, be sure to pay attention to the dimensions. These dimensions, which detail the length, width, and depth of each eReader, can make or break the reading experience. A device which is too small will be awkward to hold in the hand and will be unable to display a decent amount of text -- or might make text very small in order to display a suitable amount on the screen. Likewise, a device with a large screen will be difficult and uncomfortable to hold, and you might find yourself reading less because it's simply frustrating and impossible to get comfortable.

What to Look For: Utility

The eReader has always been a relatively simple device, but any comparison of eReaders currently on the market will make clear that simplicity is becoming increasingly rare among these tablets. That's because the addition of a color screen has inspired manufacturers to offer tablet-like applications for their devices, with some even choosing to base their next-generation devices on popular (and complex) tablet and smartphone operating systems.

If all you want to do is read, be sure to lean toward a more simplistic eReader. It's more cost effective, easier to use, and will likely be a better all-around user experience. An eReader comparison chart will likely note whether the device ships with applications or a tablet-style operating system. If you're a simple person, choose a simple tablet and avoid the confusion that comes with so-called "feature creep."

Read Reviews and Make a Decision

Finally, if you've found what looks like the perfect eReader, be sure to peruse an online ebook reader review for the device of your choice before committing your hard-earned money to it. Be sure that other users have found it as ideal as it seems in your own mind. And if it passes that test with other users, get ready to purchase your very own eReader -- one that's perfect just for you!