Sizing up the best e-book readers
If you're a big reader and you've been thinking about making the switch to e-books, now's a good time. CTV consumer reporter Lynda Steele did some field testing to see which e-books come out on top.
Retailers like Future Shop have a wide selection of e-book readers, but which ones work best?
"We're getting a lot of interest in e-books right now, because a lot of people want to have their books in the digital life -- have them on a computer, take them wherever they go and not have to worry about paper copies of everything," said Future Shop's Brent Fuller.
The Pandigital Novel eReader has a seven-inch backlit LCD screen that also lets you do web browsing and access Facebook. But it's heavy and the battery charge lasts only six hours.
Compare that to the Kobo Touch Reader with a two-week battery life. Both can hold 1,000 books.
"We've also got the Sony E-Reader. The five-inch pocket edition is very thin, very small and lightweight, you can take it with you anywhere you go," said Fuller.
The Sony E-Reader can hold 2,000 books. So with so many choices, which one is right for you?
Consumer Reports tested more than a dozen e-book readers. A key test is how easy the screen was to read.
Testers used lights to simulate outdoor sun. Readers with backlit screens have problems with glare and those that aren't backlit are much easier to read in bright light.
Testers also looked at how quickly the pages turn. In a side-by-side comparison, some e-book readers took twice as long to turn a page.
In our field test, we found the Pandigital eReader was sluggish. By comparison, the Kobo Touch was much more responsive and simple to use.
My all-round pick was the Kobo and that was backed up by the Consumer Reports testers, who chose the Kobo E-reader Touch edition and the best selling Kindle Wi-Fi as its top picks.
But for sheer portability, you can't beat the tiny E-book from Sony.
The Kindle Wi-Fi E-reader and the Kobo Touch with Wi-Fi are $139. The Sony E-Reader pocket edition with no Wi-Fi is more expensive at $200.
E-books are becoming so popular, you can get them at some public libraries now. You just have to download the software onto your E-reader. Most devices are compatible, with the exception of the Kindle, which only works with E-books from Amazon. There are also websites where you can borrow and exchange e-books with other readers. They include www.ebookexchange.com and www.booklending.com
With a report from CTV British Columbia's Lynda Steele