Friday, October 22, 2010

A Picspam of the Kobo

Today I bought myself the classic Kobo eReader, which is the 1st gen device that is going out of the way to make way for the 2nd gen device. The main difference between the two is this: the 2nd gen device has WiFi, so you can download ebooks directly into the eReader, and it's a smidgen faster. 

I'd been holding out on getting an eReader, mainly waiting for the tech to boom so I could find a device that suited me best, but as it is? There are a ton of books being released in ebook formats right now that I want, great online magazines that release their stuff in eReader formats, and when I last moved from Nova Scotia to Ontario, I was miserable at the book culling I had to commit (and my dad wasn't pleased with the four banana boxes of books either). 

But with the Kobo classic going out, the local Coles was selling it for $128. I visited it a couple of times, asking completely different sales assistants each time if I could have a look, admiring it, wondering what colours I could get it in, wondering if it was a good investment, compared to other eReaders out there. 

The fact is, there aren't very many stores which sell eReaders, and today I made the decision that I had to get it, but put it off until later, later, later, and then I went into Coles at the end of the day, and found the Kobo priced at $99, so there wasn't a reason not to get it anymore. Now what follows is a major, major picspam. You've been warned!



So, on the box itself, on one of the sides, there's some stuff about it, like:

Includes:
- Kobo eReader
- USB cable
- QuickStart Manual

Specifications:
- 120,, x 184mm; 10mm thick; weight 221g
- 1GB memory; (1GB = 1 billion bytes; actual formatted capacity may be less)*
- Holds up to 1000 titles, based on average eBook size of 1MB
- 6" E Ink display wiht 8 level gray scale
- Bluetooth Connection
- Battery Charge: up to 2 weeks (battery charge and life vary by use)
- Supports ePub and PDF

* What? I thought it was funny that this was stated on the box itself.


So I pulled it out and had a nice look at the nice packaging. I'd seen the Kobo eReader itself, of course, so I knew ahead how lightweight it was, and how it looked like in general. There's a mini-USB slot, and a slot for an SD card reader, too.


 So there's more packaging, with the Quickstart guide and USB cord, and the eReader itself. It charges by connection to the computer, so I plugged it in: 


The light up right shifts from red, to violet, to blue. When it hits blue, it means it's fully charged. 


The back is comfortably quilted. I don't think you can see it in this picture, but there is a teeny-tiny hole for resetting the Kobo in case it ever gets fubar.

While I waited for it to charge, I started to install the Desktop application. It didn't launch automatically, but finding it wasn't very hard. In time, this was showing up on my screen:


Pretty straightforward stuff: email, password, and so on so forth. Before you unplug the Kobo, you have to hit the Eject button down left. Let's have a look at what the Kobo desktop application home looks like:


Yeah, like a browser, lol. Nothing very fancy here. Very straightforward. So, let's explore the store. The left and right buttons on the top ribbon navigate the recent releases, and you can see at the top right there's a search field:


I have priorities, okay? (OK, I've not read anything of JR Ward's other than her Black Dagger Brotherhood. But still, it's JR Ward!) (And I do have a hardcopy of Behemoth. It's relevant to my work.) (And I am TOTALLY overdue on getting one of Maurice's books, dammit.)

The search pulls out the closest matches: 


Pretty straightforward. I haven't actually bought the book yet, so I can't tell you how easily it happens (my credit card is linked to my dad's monies, so I try not to spend a lot with it, but this store doesn't take debit; once I get an okay with him on a budget I will buy buy buy)... but I can't imagine it being too complicated. If it is, I'll screencap it. Now onto your library. As it happens, you can read stuff in your library on your desktop, if that's your thing.


I'm morose like that so this is what I picked:


If you read stuff on the computer, you get pretty colours!


Well, sort of. Navigation buttons are straightforward. And you have a choice from smallest...


.. to largest font sizes...


... and where in the story you want to jump to.


And this might have been more interesting if it hadn't been for the blue light on my eReader! Onto the more interesting device! There were a lot of flashing screen thingums, as it had to consolidate the new material (I'd moved in a couple of things manually, so it needed time to sort the documents). 


Note, if I hadn't had any Documents, that option would be gray. Right now, I'm reading Apex Magazine #17! It's in ePub format: 



It's pretty straightforward from here on out. The big blue button is for navigation, and you press the center to select stuff. On the left side, there're buttons for Home, Menu, Display, and Back. 

Reading PDFs are a bit more difficult, however. I asked for a PDF of Crossed Genres Year Two (under the sad mistaken assumption I could read on the computer), and this is how it shows up:


If you're viewing the whole page, the text is rather small, which is fine if that's the sort of thing you go for, but I had to figure out a better way. Enlargening it means you have to scroll left and right a lot. It's a bit annoying, but I found a good compromise in choosing the Landscape option. I still have to scroll right to get all the text on one screen, and scrolling down only gives me a few more lines at a time, but it's still something.

The other thing about the Documents, though, is that it doesn't count in your "I'm Reading" list, for some reason. Maybe because I haven't read very many pages yet. But on my Documents page, it shows that the PDF has been opened (I have another PDF, which shows as Unread).

It's really late, so I had to put aside my new toy, and in its sleep mode, it shows the cover of a book you're currently reading. Oddly, in my case, it's showing the cover of Crossed Genres Year Two. Not that I'm complaining, because it's a very pretty pretty cover!


About half an hour, it turns off, and it's got a bland ~Powered Off~ (Press Power to Start) in place of the prettiness right now, but hey. 

I haven't really settled down to read on this baby yet, but I'm definitely looking forward to it. 

1 comment:

  1. Looks neat, I just wish my Sony supported EPUB. (I got it before the Epub standard emerged.)

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