What eReader is Right for You?

There are so many eReaders on the market, it can be confusing trying to figure out which one is the right one for you. One big question I hear from Denver Public Library patrons all the time is, “which one works with the materials I can download from your website?” The answer is most of them should work, some better than others. I have had the opportunity to play with a few of the commonly used eReaders, and here is what I see as the pros and cons to each:

Kindle – The Kindle only recently started working with the library’s downloadable eBooks, but it is probably the easiest device to use. All other eReaders require a separate software to be installed on your computer before you can transfer a title to your device. With the Kindle, it’s all done wirelessly. For this reason, it is the only eReader that works with library computers; so if you do not own your own computer, but you do want access to our downloadable titles, Kindle is the way to go! New to the market is the Kindle Fire, a color eReader with Tablet capabilities. You can even watch your Netflix movies on it!

Kobo Wi-Fi – The Kobo Wi Fi is the simplest eReader I can find. It only has 6 buttons, so it’s hard to get confused when you are using the device. If you don’t like a lot of gimmickry for computers you use, the Kobo is for you. It is simple and straight forward to use once you get a book on there. Unlike the Kindle, however, it does require a tether to your computer to transfer library books onto it. This is true of all the other eReaders on the market, so it does not make the Kobo an exception, but it does make it harder to get the books onto it.

NOOK – The NOOK is probably the most popular eReader on the market right now. The NOOK just moved from its old half-touch-screen-half-not interface to a completely touch interface. While I have not had an opportunity to play with the newest of the NOOKS, I can say that the old NOOK was a good eReader with just one problem: when you transferred a library book onto the device, you weren’t sure which folder it would end up in. I helped many patrons dig around in their NOOK's folder structure to try to find the title we had just watched transfer from their computers.

NOOK Color – The NOOK Color was the first popular color eReader to hit the market. It worked well with full color children’s books and graphic novels, so it became the choice of most parents. It also has a full touch screen web browser that makes it an even more exciting device than just a regular eReader! However, the NOOK Color has the same file management problem as the old black & white NOOK, which became really irritating for most patrons.

Sony Reader Wi-Fi – Sony recently dropped all their collection of eReaders and focused their energy on their best selling eReader, the Touch. The Sony Reader Wi-Fi has a web browser that works with a wireless signal to allow you access to the internet on the eInk black and white screen. The Reader Wi-Fi has a full touch screen and offers many easy (and fun) to use features, like taking notes: you can write on the screen or highlight text. Your notes are then kept in a separate folder for easy access and recall.

Still not sure which eReader to get? Call and schedule a one-on-one appointment in the Community Technology Center at 720-865-1706. Or you can always check out a Tech Petting Zoo, coming to a branch near you! At the Tech Petting Zoos, you can play with any of the eReaders listed above and ask questions of knowledgeable staff. Already have an eReader? Bring it in with your laptop and we will help you setup the software for downloading and transferring library eBooks to your device!

So far, we have Tech Petting Zoos scheduled for:
Wednesday, 11/23, 12 noon - 2 p.m.
     Location: Hampden

January 2012:
Thursday, 1/5, 6 - 8 p.m.
     Location: Eugene Field
Thursday, 1/12, 10 a.m. - 12 noon
     Location: Schlessman
Thursday, 1/26, 5 - 7 p.m.
     Location: Bear Valley

Stay tuned. As more branches are added for Tech Petting Zoos, they will be posted to our website!

Written by squee on November 18, 2011


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