With the recent launch of the new Nook, the new Kobo eReader Touch Edition, and the new Amazon Kindle with Special Offers, consumers have 3 big name, popular, eBook readers priced under $150.
First up is the obvious, the Kindle. It is the oldest in the list. So it is not as thin or as feature rich as the other two, but it’s still by far the most popular, sales wise. It is heavier than its competitors and does not feature a touch screen. But it is seamless with the Kindle Bookstore and draws from the biggest eBook collection around. The model with Special Offers is the cheapest Kindle. It’s $114 and includes advertisements on the home page and screensavers. But the standard Kindle, without ads, also comes in under $150, at $139. Amazon also sells Kindles with 3G access, and is the only eBook reader that has that option… but that takes us above the $150 level.
The Barnes & Noble Nook is another dedicated eBook reader device which is different from their previous, tablet like, Nook Color. The Nook costs $139 and has more features than the Kindle. First, it has a touchscreen display, and the eBook reader is thin and lightweight. Slow page turning is a minor issue with the Nook.
The Kobo eReader Touch Edition comes in at $130. It has almost everything the Nook has. The main difference is fewer buttons. Though Nook is touch screen, it has two page turn buttons, but Kobo eReader Touch Edition uses touch instead, and it has a better page turning experience than the Kindle. However, there are less options for changing the view of the pages like adjusting margins or line spacing.
Both Amazon and Barnes & Noble reported record sales of their eReaders earlier this month. As the market for eBook readers continue to grow and get more competitive, there will be increasing pressure on both pricing and the number of features each eBook reader has.
A kind reader wrote in to say that Kobo released an update to their firmware, 1.9.5, just yesterday. The update allows Kobo users to adjust margin, linespacing, justification, font size, and to choose from 7 different fonts, with the ability to side load additional fonts. The information he provided has been confirmed. Thank you Russell! ~ editor