Mobileread
I like... I don't like...
#1  Khendron 05-11-2010, 01:50 PM
I got my Kobo a few days ago, after a lot of trouble getting my hands on one. Everyone was out of stock. One Chapters store I called said they had some and put one on hold for me, but when I got there they said they didn't have any at all. They hooked me up with another Chapters across town that had some, and gave me a $5 gift card for my troubles.

Anyway, back to the Kobo.

I like the colour: black. I saw some of the white ones in the store, and found them rather ugly. The blue button makes them look like some sort of medical device.

One thing I don't like about the black is that it shows finger marks very easily. I am frequently wiping off finger prints.

I like the weight. It is very easy to hold in your hands.

I don't like the placement of the button. It is fine when you are holding the Kobo with 2 hands, but I haven't figured out how to hold it with one hand and still be able to click the button properly. This is especially annoying when trying to read the Kobo while standing on a bus.

I like the screen. Easy to read, like the screen of any other E-Ink reader. Only a lot cheaper!

I like the font selection available for ePub books. There are not a lot of fonts (two) and not many sizes, but they are sufficient for most reading.

I don't like the way it handles PDF files. I downloaded an eBook from the library, and it came in PDF format. The first annoyance is that the book does not show up in my list of Books. I have to switch to the Documents list to find it. My second annoyance is that there does not appear to be any way to navigate the PDF other than one page at a time. Need to jump to page 100, then you have to click Next 100 times. And finally, zooming in on a PDF just doesn't work for me. The pan and scan is too awkward when reading a novel.

I finally understand why there is an OFF button. It seemed redundant (the Kobo doesn't use any power just sitting there) until I put the Kobo in my backpack for a while. When I pulled it out again, it had flipped back about 50 pages and drained most of the battery. I am now careful to turn my Kobo off before packing it away.

It hanged on me before I had owned it for 24 hours. I had to reset it with a paper clip. When I first looked at the Kobo in a store, I found 2 demo models that were unresponsive. I figured being demo models, they were probably seeing an atypical amount of use, so I didn't see this as a problem. Now I am not so sure. I need a place on my Kobo when I can stow a paper clip, just in case.

I miss having a built-in dictionary. When reading books on my iPod Touch using Stanza, I use the dictionary feature a lot. One feature that the Kobo does not have that I do not miss is Search. On my iPod I found I rarely search a book.

I like the quilted back. I was indifferent to this feature when I first heard of it, but now that I have one I appreciate the friction it provides. I don't have to worry so much about my Kobo sliding off a table because I knocked into it.

I keep wishing the Kobo had a clock. I guess I got used to Stanza displaying the time at the top of the screen on my iPod. I can think of many reasons not to display the time on an E-Ink display, but I still miss it.
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#2  techie42 05-11-2010, 04:11 PM
>> I don't like the placement of the button. It is fine when you are holding the Kobo with 2 hands, but I haven't figured out how to hold it with one hand and still be able to click the button properly. This is especially annoying when trying to read the Kobo while standing on a bus. <<

I found that I can hold the bus pole witgh my left hand and I can hold the kobo with my right hand and turn pages with my thumb. The kobo is lighter then most books that I read!
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#3  Khendron 05-11-2010, 04:40 PM
Quote techie42
I found that I can hold the bus pole witgh my left hand and I can hold the kobo with my right hand and turn pages with my thumb. The kobo is lighter then most books that I read!
Only works if there is a bus pole available. Ottawa buses tend to have less poles and more back-of-seat and over-head handles.

One thing I forgot from my list:
This pisses me off about eBooks in general, not just the Kobo: you can't tell how long a book is just by looking at it in an online store. You have to download it (paying for it if it is not a free book) and start reading it to get any idea at all how long it is. I've downloaded more than one book on my iPod that turned out to be 10 page short stories. I see the same problem with my Kobo.
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#4  techie42 05-11-2010, 04:44 PM
Quote Khendron
Only works if there is a bus pole available. Ottawa buses tend to have less poles and more back-of-seat and over-head handles.

One thing I forgot from my list:
This pisses me off about eBooks in general, not just the Kobo: you can't tell how long a book is just by looking at it in an online store. You have to download it (paying for it if it is not a free book) and start reading it to get any idea at all how long it is. I've downloaded more than one book on my iPod that turned out to be 10 page short stories. I see the same problem with my Kobo.
OUCH.
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#5  sjfwhite 05-11-2010, 05:18 PM
I've noticed on mine that after charging it for awhile (not fully charged) the red light comes on after I disconnect it and then stays on, even though it is no longer connected.

I have had it hang on my once when checking the date/time settings and have had it spontaneously reboot on me once when going from the end of the page in one chapter to the next page at the beginning of the next chapter.

My only other beef is that page turning really seems slow (compared to all the palm, windows mobile, then ipod/iphone devices I have used). I suspect this is common to dedicated e-ink readers but even navigating through menus is painfully slow.
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#6  Shopaholic 05-11-2010, 05:42 PM
Quote Khendron
One thing I forgot from my list:
This pisses me off about eBooks in general, not just the Kobo: you can't tell how long a book is just by looking at it in an online store. You have to download it (paying for it if it is not a free book) and start reading it to get any idea at all how long it is. I've downloaded more than one book on my iPod that turned out to be 10 page short stories. I see the same problem with my Kobo.
The Kobobooks site doesn't give any indication but other sites do. The Sony Store shows file size, Smashwords has the number of words, Books on Board also shows the file size. When I went to some online libraries to look at borrowing books I also saw file size. It's too bad that Kobobooks doesn't show file size. Maybe before you buy a book you can check out other sites to see file size before you buy from Kobo?
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#7  SensualPoet 05-11-2010, 07:56 PM
Quote Shopaholic
The Kobobooks site doesn't give any indication but other sites do.
+1

What the heck are they thinking at the Kobo Book Store? Of course I care if the $9.99 ebook is 6 pages or 600. I don't understand how on earth this "usability" metric got over-looked.

I have yet to have the Kobo hang on me. I have experienced the ePub font glitch. I'm not interested in pdf on a 6" reader (I don't read "books" on a smartphone either).

I like the porcelain finish; it doesn't show the dirt and/or wipes off easily. Then again, sometimes I can't see the screen at all ... because the cat has climbed up in between my Kobo and my face.
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#8  bamelin 05-11-2010, 09:13 PM
Just a note .. the Kobo does actually have a clock it's just abit of a hassle to access it. You have to go through the menu, then settings and time/date.

I would love it if the clock appeared every time you open a tab while reading.
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#9  Stinger 05-12-2010, 03:04 AM
Quote Khendron
I finally understand why there is an OFF button. It seemed redundant (the Kobo doesn't use any power just sitting there) until I put the Kobo in my backpack for a while. When I pulled it out again, it had flipped back about 50 pages and drained most of the battery. I am now careful to turn my Kobo off before packing it away.

Just a note on this from an engineering point of view:
The Kobo DOES use power when powered on and just sitting there. While the advantage of eInk screens is they don't need power to maintain an image after the initial "burn", you gotta consider the device as a whole. The screen might not need power just sitting there, but the underlying microprocessor driving the device is still running, albeit in an idle state. The device still needs to respond to button presses, poll battery status, and few other small things you can chalk up to 'an OS doing its thing'.
When compared to the power it takes to "flip a page", the drain on the battery in this idle state is relatively small, but it IS still present.

I would be curious to learn what the actual numbers are in regards this. Specifically, how long would the device need to idle to use the same amount of power as powering on and loading a book?
ya know, knowing if I'm not going to be reading for X hours, it's better to turn the device off
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#10  Khendron 05-12-2010, 10:09 AM
Quote Stinger
I would be curious to learn what the actual numbers are in regards this. Specifically, how long would the device need to idle to use the same amount of power as powering on and loading a book?
ya know, knowing if I'm not going to be reading for X hours, it's better to turn the device off
What I need is TWO Kobos, so I compare their power usage side by side. My parent's are getting one also. Maybe I will steal theirs for a few days
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