Tuesday, 25 August 2020

The Kobo Libra H20 is the best value e-reader

Previously, I posted on why the Kindle Paperwhite is the best 6-inches e-reader. In this post, I'll justify why the Kobo Libra H20 is not just the best choice for a 7-inches e-reader but also the best value e-reader. In the 7-inches size, the comparison is between the Kindle Oasis 3 and the Kobo Libra H20. Android e-readers mainly exist in the 7.8-inches and 10.3-inches sizes, so there are limited options to include. Onyx Boox previously released a 6.8-inches e-reader - the Onyx Boox T68 Plus - but the model is no longer supported. 

Three main reasons make Libra H20 an attractive proposition:
  1. For the £150 price, you get premium features. To compare, the 8GB model of the Kindle Oasis 3 costs £230. Despite the significant price difference, you get similar hardware features - water-proofing, auto-rotation, buttons, warm lighting and a larger 7-inches screen. Yes, the Oasis has a metallic back, but for many, this is a negative as it is more prone to damage in comparison to the Libra's hardened plastic. The metallic back is also cold to the hand in lower temperatures.
  2. The Libra H20, like other Kobo e-readers, is open to installing third-party add-ons. Thus, it is possible to not only install KOReader but also several hacks and utilities.
  3. I can't repeat it enough: the ability to borrow public library e-books and read them on a Kobo is a big deal. Public library support of e-book borrowing is still developing and should get better. 
Overall, the Libra H20, for its price, is the best value e-reader. The 7-inches size is ideal for e-books and costs only £30 more than the Paperwhite. In real-world usage, Kobo didn't cut any corners to get the price down. It is essentially a smaller version of the Kobo Forma but without the Mobius screen technology.

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