Carrying Books Around

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Kindle DX Wireless Reading Device (9.7" Display, Global Wireless, Latest Generation)
Cryptonomicon really is an interesting read. I keep bringing it with me everywhere I go. Although it feels good to be reading a real book for a change, it's a tad bit inconvenient. An ebook reader would definitely be more convenient. I mean the size of ebook readers doesn't make it more convenient. It's actually how many books you can carry around in them.

Just think of it. Right now, I am in the middle of three novels. I have a paperback copy of Cryptonomicon, a paperback copy of Whiteout (Ken Follett) and a PDF copy of Bourne Legacy saved in my Treo 650. What if I had all three in ebook form? I could conveniently switch from one to the other, carrying just one book - I mean ebook reader. 

Take the Amazon Kindle. It can take in around 3,500 books (Kindle DX only, 1,500 for the 6" Kindle). Since  going international, Kindle owners from over a hundred countries can  now connect wirelessly to Amazon buy books, a big plus for people living outside the US. Users can read their existing PDF and TXT format ebooks  and play Audible audio books or MP3's. HTML, DOC, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP files are supported when converted for the Kindle's software. It is limited by its e-ink display, as it can only display in black and white. But that display uses less power than color LCD and can last about a week with the wireless turned on and about 2 weeks with wireless off. That's from a single charge. It definitely beats the amount of time my cell phone can last on a single charge. So it's power-saving, can carry a lot of books, can play music and you can buy books using a 3G connection (books within minutes, they say).

Then there's also the Nook from Barnes & Noble, a great device that one-ups the Amazon Kindle by giving users the ability to share ebooks with each other free of charge. The Nook also comes with WiFi, so you can still download books if 3G in your neck of the woods is spotty. It has a color touch-screen near the bottom instead of buttons to control the interface. It does lend the Nook a better, cleaner look overall. The main reading display is still e-ink though to conserve energy in between charges. It has a smaller capacity when compared to the DX, holding approximately 1,500 books. That's less then half of what the Kindle DX can carry, but plenty enough to give you a few years worth of reading - LOL. If you need more storage though, you can add to it by using a Micro SD card. The Nook supports EPUB, PDB and PDF ebook files. In addition it can also play MP3's and use photos in JPG, GIF, PNG and BMP formats as screensavers (full specs here). Downside is no love for geeks living outside the US. The Nook is US-only for now.

These two are the most viable ebook readers today, since both are tied to each company's bookstore and make buying books really easy. They also allow readers to read (to some extent) their existing ebooks. As with any new-fangled gadget, the contention is still price. Personally, I can't afford them. And until I can, I'll stick to paperbacks and the ebooks on my Treo 650. 

2 comments:

simons said...

Really i amazon kindle reader and i am looking for free amazon kindle books. if you have pls give us the link.

Ed said...

for the kindle? i don't own one yet so ihaven't done any searching. i have .pdf ebooks that i got for reading on my phone though and the kindle supports that format. if you already have old ebooks in pdf like i do on your computer, this guide will help guide you on how to transfer them to the kindle: http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=200375630&#usb

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