A few days ago (17th November … cough), I picked up a new toy, a Kobo Touch E-Reader.  I made a tweet along the lines of…


Look, it’s an EBook reader that’s not a kindle! It is, rather good. Review in a day or so.


In my defence, I have been testing the device thoroughly.  So thoroughly, I’ve clocked 41 hours reading time on it and around six books.  If you don’t believe me, see the photo for proof.

It’s small (6 inch screen, quite thin border), it’s light, and comes with a touch screen.  If you need more space, just pop in a micro SD card.  The device supports EPUB, MOBI, TXT, CBR/CBZ and PDF.  It’ll also connect using Adobe EPUB if you’ve bought books from other stores.  The UI is amazingly intuitive: your bookshelf can be arranged in a variety of views and reading consists of flicks or taps to the left and right.  The font size, margins, line spacing and font can all be changed, so you can make your page look like a condensed cheap 70s paperback or as spacious as a modern best seller hard back.  Reading is an addictive pleasure.  If the on board fonts aren’t good enough, you can side load TTFs.  Finally, it comes with a pretty good webkit based browser, Sudoku and a sketch pad.  Battery life appears to happily be a few weeks with a couple of hours a day.  I personally, recharge between books.

Firmware updates are regular and come as OTA updates.  Firmware appears to be released every few weeks with new functionality each time.  Latest release (as of writing) brought notes, highlights and annotations to non Kobo Books.

One of the big winners for me, is the shop system.  Purchases can be made on the website, on the reader or on tablet/phone.  Books are delivered OTA (Wifi only).  Books purchased from the store are tracked as you read so you can pick up your position on any device, and keep track of your reading habits.  Sidloaded books are only tracked on the device.  Books purchased from Kobo can be downloaded as Adobe EPub to use on other devices.  Admittedly, my first purchase had a small hitch, but this was quickly resolved by the store and I was refunded the full value of the book as store credit, which was rather nice.

I am impressed.  Love the device, love the system.  Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m getting back to reading.

(Edit: Wired rather like it as well: page1, page2)