Current ebook reader - a small decision support

Current ebook reader - a small decision support

Tolino Shine eBook reader (Personal Computers)

Customer Review

I was recently faced with the challenge to choose a ebook reader for my mother in law. Of course, something goes on with some tact before, as you can imagine, especially since I myself read Ebooks primarily on my phone (Experia Z1) or my tablet (Experia Z2) and me do not even staying with eBook readers. But mother - how many potential buyers - wants to key only once on this "new" technology approach, was appropriately enough the premise "ebook reader instead multifunctional glossy cell phone". The by devices such as the Kindle Fire, which I will continue also to address briefly below, certainly fall "between the cracks", is deliberate. It is here go to ebook reader - ie devices that "plain and simple" are more or less resources drawing eBooks since.

1. The fundamental question: Am I ever a ebook reader users?
Have Okay, if you are a passionate holiday-readers already (as acquaintances of mine) addressed the question whether it would not be good to have a little more space for boiled water and canned in suitcases by simply all the heavy books leave home, then the answer is probably pretty clear. If you "only" by the constant music on television and radio have become noisy and "have a look" like, then the situation is somewhat different. Let's face it: ebook reader have with few exceptions, hardly anything with a conventional paper book (I almost "flesh and bones" written) to do. Those who love the feel of books and literally on paper "is" that is certainly missing something - paper-like screens or not, it's just not the same. The advantages of ebooks but are off of this "feeling about" quite obvious: Who can haul his entire library around with you? Eben: Nobody. Some readers notes also are possible, the one with other devices across-synchronize - or even "bookmarks" that you, for example in the Reader program relies on the PC and on the actual ebook reader then also has. The possibilities are as varied, especially in my eyes is an essential factor, have been already taken care of that even quite bulky and at the same time sensitive large sizes or for example first editions in the form of hard covers that you have some books simply not taken "with the garden" , The falling away today, because the ebook reader reduces everything to a size, a weight and a protector component (namely his own or to yourself).
Anyone who is not at all sure a whole, which should - now times only my opinion, although some people perhaps laughable place - try at retail, whether a such a device "is" at all. I know people (eg myself), who years ago already with the "this is something new" hype gained an ebook reader and then realized that as a Reader times is nothing for them somehow. Conclusion: Before try. There is already enough, if one has generally tried it out, whether the technology generally is.

2. What is there currently (as of June 2014) for current ebook reader that might interest me?
Well, a quick look at chip or another review portal can help there already. Basically, it boils down to is that about half a dozen manufacturers still occur at the moment with the current devices on the market. The number may vary, but the "big ones" such as Amazon, Sony, Kobo, Longshine / Tolino make currently on the market fairly among themselves. In addition, at relatively current devices still Pocketbook, Blaupunkt, TrekStor and a few niche producers that I not generally "omit" want, but can not because of a cost or a functional advantage somehow profile. Below I will go into each "current" devices of the above manufacturers and briefly explain what the differences are. From this brief overview I will draw my conclusions as for the procurement of "mother-" in section 3:

2.I - Amazon
Amazon is omnipresent at the moment with the Paperwhite in the "old" and "new" (2013er) version in the media, but also offers the Kindle 4 and has indeed also the various models of the Kindle Fire (with or without HD in different versioning) has to offer, but that basically divides only the name with the other Kindles. Important: If it is colorful, it is a Fire, it's not a pure ebook reader. Here are the ghosts like a divorce, but the differentiation is already necessary. The Kindle Fire (in no matter what version) is a fully featured tablet with an Android-derivative that is used and cared for just Amazon and has only indirectly to do something else with Ebooks. When Fire is more about to move into the tablet segment. I am also just for completeness discussed here. Fact: Kindle Fires run here "out of competition".
But Anyway - Amazon has indeed fully-fledged "pure" ebook reader offer. It is already long been leaders in various rankings "old" Kindle Paperwhite, because it just combined a very good touch with the pseudo-paper technology from Amazon and a built-in lighting, can be very good bef├╝ttert on Amazon and in general of the functionalities is held so that even beginners with the equipment well get along. Basically so already stood the first recommendation, if there was not the problem that the "new" is Paperwhite from 2013 even better positioned. It works generally "round" of the performance characteristics (response times, and the like), which is due to newer hardware, but also brings a lot of convenience features and simplifications (eg an airplane mode) that were missing the "old" Paperwhite previously. Important to know, however: Most software features of the "new" Paperwhite be with the latest firmware updates for the "old" Paperwhite also recorded on these devices. So if the 20 euro price difference somehow do not want to pay, who can confidently still rely here on the "old" version.
Important for Paperwhite & Co: You can "only" MOBI, AZW (the in-house Amazon format that corresponds MOBI) and conditionally also PDF. Not more. Especially not EPub. If the Bohemian villages for you, so let me say flat: On the Kindle, you can not use "every" Ebook, but only "some" and a total of actually "almost exclusively" ebooks that Amazon has shipped.
The Kindle 4 I do not want to deprive you: He is the touch-less, non-illuminated version of the Kindle, and all seems somewhat in all frumpy with his studs over which you have control menus that yell a certain extent "going on, press the menu item" , Well, is not because there is no touch. One must definitely durchhangeln with the little buttons there. Who still wants to (and I do not know why), who likes to pull the Kindle 4 into consideration. I no longer recommend him to buy.
For Amazon customers important, yes, almost magical way, should appear the word "Calibre". Search times after that in Google and you'll find a software that helps you manage your eBooks. Why do you need something, you ask? Well, if you have eBooks available in an unprotected ePub format and purely coincidental these eBooks in MOBI format (the Amazon dominates) need, so allows the software "Calibre" a conversion in this (and other) formats. Calibre is intended to be only an example and show a way out of the "I can only with Amazon" to come out -Misere.
Also important for Amazon customers: Amazon advertises that you can download for free world his books on the "Whispernet". This also works (it had once tested in Central America), but if you need the ... well? The Whispernet is indeed only come into play if you can use anyway via Hotspot Internet not for example, enabling significantly faster downloads. But nice that there is the feature. However, the meaning is rather questionable for almost nomadic Central European users.
Doubtful - hm. In "questionable" comes to mind concerning. The Paperwhite another that it is questionable whether all customers would agree with the term "white". The advertisement is somewhat misleading here. We are talking about practically like a graying white, even if it has become quite bright since oldest Kindle. It is still not "white" but "dirty white". What you should know in order not to hang the wrong expectations.

2.II - Sony:
Sony has a real tradition of good to very good eBook readers, but they all have a negative I'd like to send directly ahead: they have no lighting. Sony is somehow assumed that it does not need such a thing. Fact: This is true only to a limited and one should be aware of this shortcoming from the beginning time of purchase. One advantage, however, in Sony are the tactile buttons on the device: One can thus off-existing with the current PRS-T3 and the previous PRS-T2 touch feature also align with the buttons slightly to the equipment. Interesting especially for situations where you (for whatever reason - from gloves to pave everything is in it) with your own hand can not do anything on the touch screen. In this respect: a definite plus.
As with Sony are usual quality and performance of both the PRS-T3, as well as its predecessor on every exalted doubt. It moves at the level of each competing product from Amazon (thus the Paperwhite in the "new" or "old" version) and can keep up there. In fact, Sony has one of the few real competitors for the Paperwhite and even comes here with a Benefit around the corner, which makes more interesting again in my eyes Sony: You dispense with their own proprietary format and uses Epub and PDF, and PDF in my opinion is better supported than in Kindle & Co and also otherwise the Sony devices can very shine so, wanting to make "any" right within the meaning of "Which formats and which stores the device supports it?". Sony support with the PRS-T3 namely several shops, so that one is not bound by it, if, for example, Amazon has just book X or Y in the sale.
The PRS-T3 provides the way compared to its predecessor a fixed (!) And built by Cover to what one hand, the device weight slightly increased and the customer effectively a cover "imposes" an other, but exempt from the not so unfounded fear that the display times scratched. Well, "freed" is perhaps not the right word - it helps to have less fear of scratches.
Interestingly, unlike the Amazon device at least has the PRS-T3 a memory card slot, which allows you to significantly increase the device's memory via micro SD card. Typical Sony actually.

2.III - Tolino or Longshine:
Not least thanks to the partnership with Telekom, Hugeldubel, Bertelsmann & Co Tolino is also present in the media as the Amazon Paperwhite at the moment with his "Shine". Conclusions as to comparability are thus not given, because in the eyes of the professional IT-moth (so in my eyes) acts of "Shine" as the slightly delayed (not to say "typical late") experiment, the digital " Kindle cosmos "Amazon still to oppose something. In my opinion should have been perhaps more to do in this matter with Sony together, but this was found to be purely subjective comment in the space now times. Fact: The "Shine" is the media as "Paper White-killer" and therefore turns out to be in a direct comparison as "puss".
BUT bad is not. Anyway, it would not, if the prices of the devices would not be the same as peas in a pod. But that may be because you the lower end of the possible "price scale" with minimal margin calculated at least for Amazon, because you do not want to make the real money so to the terminal, but with the Kindle Ebooks (including a "lifelong "Customer loyalty at Amazon).
The Shine in any case provides quality (from a performance point anyway) from the level of the "old" Paperwhite, but also has a theoretically superior battery life and is with Epub and PDF "fuel" (among other things), so that in theory is independent of any specific webshops. However, Sony has also - at a slightly higher price, yes, but also in an easy to much better processed device. In addition, the comparison between Tolino and Sony somehow clear where the wind blows at Tolino: Here are several large distributors of written content on the search for a device have been, with your Content on previous Big players "Amazon" in past can bring to market. That also Thalia with its "Multi-channel strategy" ( is, says a lot about the purpose of this terminal. In other words, to simplify and to the facts: The Shine is the counterpart to the White Paper. One must therefore it mutatis mutandis disconnect from a device such as the PRS-T3 Sony, the once for this since it is basically to make available to the customer the widest possible range of ebook formats. When Tolino and the Paperwhite are (my opinion) marketing of eBooks in the foreground and not the functionality as an eBook reader. This is a subtle but very significant difference.
Mental or actual predecessors of Tolino Shine, you'll probably also come, are in the meantime no longer contemporary OYO (presented by Thalia in 2010 as a competitor to Kindle before its publication) and the Odyssey HD (from Bookeen as a competitor to the "old" Paperwhite built).
Since April 2014, there is also the Tolino vision which seems a bit irritating to me because they trade in the superior battery life of Shine against good 10 grams less weight. Also a significant advantage Maybe me here but escaped. For evidence, I am grateful here.
Both vision and Shine are expandable via micro SD. Important here: with 32 GB is final (applies as well for Sony devices - here simply takes a limitation of Android, which is consistently used in these devices as the operating system).
It should be noted is that the functionality of Tolinos originally was very limited and has approached more and more to the scope of eg Amazon Kindle with continuous updates. Important here: There were within the "coasting" of Tolino Shine multiple bugs that have since been largely eliminated. So reading some books only was possible, for example, if you were connected to the Internet. Internet is compulsory but in my opinion a no-go. Good thing here (largely) been nachbessert. Important to know is also that the various booksellers compete with each other and you have quite handle several accounts if you do not just get book X at Thalia, but at Hugeldubel. But applies at the Sony devices also.

2.IV - Kobo:
Kobo was formerly times "Short Covers" and produces its own ebook reader based on Android, which may shine above all the fact that they can have many formats, among others also common MOBI why quite the bridge can be beaten to Kindle here.
Seen in total Kobo moved quite on par with Sony and the Tolinos. Kobo itself this is not limited to the Reader sales, but also markets itself; though not as intrusive as other vendors. The various devices on the market called Kobo Glo, Touch, Aura and Aura HD, are continuously technically the "midfield" to settle and found there also priced again, so that (mutatis mutandis but not much really) can not do much wrong here.
May Briefly say: Stay away from the aura - the device has a below-average battery life. The Aura HD is fairly large (6.8 inches) and thus too bulky for some - goes altogether anyway more in the direction "bad Tablet" as "good ebook reader", but is interesting for someone who is an alternative to the PRS -T3 or Shine investigated. The "touch" can turn the lighting flutes and remains with all the features clearly behind the (old) Paperwhite back, but could come as an alternative to Kindle 4 in question. Overall, a nice sub-to-mid-size device. But nothing more. Well - and the glo? Now, the glo has a very good display, good performance, a very eye-friendly lighting and is also expandable via micro SD card. Overall a nice package that you have put together in this unit. Overall, there is quite a competitor for Paperwhite and the PRS-T3 in question since the operation is very intuitive.

2.V - Others:
Among all the other device manufacturers like Pocketbook, TrekStor and even Blaupunkt there, as already indicated, a few who stand out "upward" from the crowd. As a rule, you can say here: Stay away! It is interesting for some customers perhaps the PocketBook Touch Lux, which can also play audio books and music thanks jack plug, but otherwise also rather disappointed than enthusiastic. Many devices remain straight at the screen simply much below expectations - at prices that are consistent with those of the "big" providers thoroughly. So you get de facto less for the same money. Who wants to look around anyway, the search times next to the PocketBook Touch Lux after TrekStor Pyrus and the Blaupunkt Livro - at times to name just a few examples for which there is quite a lot of tests on the Internet. All these devices in common (but by no means a standard) is that they can Epub and PDF, the Livro also MOBI.

2.VI - Apple:
Yes, what about Apple? Now, Apple marketed it myself books on iTunes. Unfortunately (or fortunately) has never thrown an appropriate reader in the market but limited itself these books on other devices from Apple represent - for example on the various iPads. Amazon in turn uses its own Kindle App to Keep the fun in the opposite direction, the Apple users with books can. Whether it works - well, that remains to be seen. Fact: There is no ebook reader from Apple.

3. My choice - or: What did he now bought for the mother?
Well, I had three or four favorites that I had to weigh against each other. Very well presented itself the latest industry Primus and regular test winner - the current White Paper (2013). Directly behind three devices share equal second place: The Kobo Glo, the Tolino Shine and the Sony PRS-T3. All other devices - for example, the PRS-T2 - fell from my judgment for that reason out, because they were in my eyes no longer appropriate and partly due to the fact that they belong to an "old" generation, were felt too expensive.
Does the White Paper because now won? No or yes and no. Caveat: It has become the Paperwhite. But I have done me so hard. For I am (although himself Kindle book author) not a big fan of Amazon's marketing and formats Policy. I was here for my Epub or a work based on EPub "own" have preferred MOBI or AZW format from Amazon. For My Mother is the device but just the thing: The fact that you can always just buy from Amazon - with a built-in bookstore that offers a not many opportunities to do something "wrong" (this fear resonates so many users with), and a Whispernet for you just can not set up wireless network must ... these are features that made me tend to Paperwhite. I like also the presentation of the equipment and in the newer version anyway "warmer" light illumination. All purely subjective - but on the objective part we are already away (the place in 2nd place).
Another question is definitely interesting for you:

4. Alternatives - or: What would it otherwise become?
As I said lie close together in 2nd place, the three devices Sony PRS-T3, Tolino Shine and Kobo Glo. I can for non-Amazon users recommend all three regions. You can go far wrong with any of the devices. The Sony has in my opinion by far the best feel and supports many formats, is generally very valuable and has a built-in cover. That makes it for some customers but have a no-go. In addition, the lighting that you can purchase in this but missing.
The glo by Kobo has a really good display, a nice lighting (if you other devices "in the eyes bite", then why not try the Kobo Glo out) and really only the shortcoming that Kobo just a North American firm, now with Japanese owners and is therefore perhaps the connected Ebook shop not necessarily provide all this what you want to have just so. Here then you have to be active themselves and to otherwise procure Ebooks and grab the reader. As far as not a problem - if one because it feels like (in-law would be safe too stupid).
The Tolino Shine in turn makes it the other way around: he is of the view and other performance parameters slightly below the Paperwhite and the PRS-T3 and something (so to speak in the middle between them) located above the level of Kobo Glo and already offers itself therefore as Alternative to the glo, but stands out above all through the various shops that you can use to purchase eBooks. Thus, the Shine offers what the glo missing - and to some extent, the PRS-T3, which is not also an inundated with opportunities for book purchase. Whether that's a big advantage - well, who knows?
Priced the three devices do the rest, nothing. They are all located in the 100-range (sometimes more, sometimes less) and are thus slightly more favorable than the Paperwhite with its currently almost 120, however, the over every now and then to chaotic action prices with special coupons and all Pi-Pa-Po for well under 100 the virtual counter goes.
The bottom line is: I'm still torn between the three units back and forth. The Kobo Glo falls down somehow out (comes indeed already from 2012), then clawing but "at the edge of the well" firmly, because he has a nice lighting and an equally nice display. Hm. Subjectively I would the equipment (and the Paperwhite) bring in this rough order:

Paperwhite> Tolino Shine> Sony PRS-T3> Kobo Glo

The distances are not very big - here decide, in fact they show symptoms such as missing or existing lighting and the like. You should very carefully weigh here. But the field is at least narrowed somewhat.

5. Decision support - or: What should I buy now?
I would decide in your place right now (April 2014) between the four above-mentioned devices. So between the Paperwhite, the shine, the PRS-T3 and the glo. All other devices of the same manufacturer, you can classify and obtain, if you the actual devices are too expensive under "affordable alternative". Make here realize that you are purchasing the previous generation devices. But this is - important! - With ebook reader actually not the MEGA problem. Tweaks it so the money then you grab here too quiet.

The devices from the "current" segment are as follows:

5.I - Paperwhite (2013):
Definitely recommended. But you are buying a product that you specifies on Amazon. You should bear in mind beforehand.

5.II - Tolino Shine:
Cute Paperwhite alternative. Similar approach as for the Kindles, but of various, competing distributors operated. You should check in advance whether you have enough supply. Big advantage: You can see in almost every major bookstore chains, the device times.

5.III - Sony PRS-T3:
Will also often available in bookstore chains. Nice alternative to Paperwhite and shine, but without lighting (which costs extra) and with fixed verbautem Cover. Technically top from the rest of her okay. Which is slightly behind the Shine. However, if the whole Tolino Alliance clutter not want to have, which can be reflected here.

5.IV - Kobo Glo:
The glo is a good alternative for customers who want "big three" do not hear from the surroundings yet want good quality. Overall, a bit dated, but definitely worth the display and lighting her a try.

My recommendations from the "Small Change" segment:

5.V - Paperwhite (before 2013) and Sony PRS-T2:
Should the devices be time to get cheaper, they are good alternative to the current "new" counterparts Paperwhite (2013) and PRS-T3. Likewise, it is important to make sure that you do not accidentally "old" at the price of "new" buys.

5.VI - How? No other more?
No, frankly I find in the quality segment below the Kobo Glo at the moment barely devices that are worth your money. Who Kobo Aura HD and the like can get for less than the partially still wanted to 130/140 euros, which was pleased to acknowledge the fact and perhaps actually a bargain. As the industry Primus is a maximum of 120 euros (!), All devices that are about are much too expensive. In absolute low-budget range below 70/80 Euro, there are today hardly the current generation equipment, so that we are quick to "steer clear" segment.

The "finger-way" segment:

5.VII - The "Just do not buy" faction:
Sounds unfair, but it's not. Devices as currently still TrekStor, Blaupunkt, Kobo (older devices) and the like are offered - the Kindle 4 one here for me explicitly in this group - the cost of what they do definitely too much and are for me an absolute no -Go. For a few euros more to buy a current product from the list above makes much more sense here.

6. What now?
My advice: you sleep on it. See the equipment and set here questions. I'll take care of it, to procure answers. What they should of course also make it: Look around. For example, there was recently at Shell an action in the Paperwhite (but probably the "old" version - you may correct me if I'm wrong) for a couple of shell-points and pocket money were carved out. It will be interesting, what's next advertising campaign.
Speaking of advertising campaign: There are always times again approaches that ebook reader "for umme" be brought to the people by abusing the screensaver or screen backgrounds or the like as advertising space. Who drives routinely on his car with the banners of the telephone pastor of his choice in the area around which like to find something good. My mother does not. That being said, that you rarely know what except such obvious adjustments so everything was still done with the set.

This review is often updated and improved by me. If they give you is helpful, so I am pleased with a corresponding "helpful" rating. If not, I'm talking about objective criticism in the form of a comment and take this love to as a basis for discussion. Many Thanks :-)

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