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Monday, 20 September 2021

The 6-inches e-reader is no longer the default size

Most of the early e-readers were 6-inches in size. Kobo tried to change things when it introduced the Kobo Aura HD in 2013 with a 6.8-inches screen. As the larger screen size was relatively novel, Kobo marketed the Aura HD as the "The eReader, reimagined". Onyx Boox experimented with a 6.8-inches size when it released the T68 in 2014. The 8-inches Boox i86 followed in 2015 as Onyx Boox gradually moved beyond the 6-inches e-reader. 

However, in my view, Kobo - as an established vendor - with the release of the Aura One in late 2016, finally started an industry-wide move to larger e-readers. The 7.8-inches size was popular and followed by Boox's Nova series. Before the Nova series, Onyx Boox also released the N96 (9.7-inches) and Boox Max (13.3-inches) earlier in 2016.  Amazon - stubbornly keeping to the 6-inches size - released its first 7-inches e-reader in late 2017 (the Kindle Oasis 2). 

We still see 6-inches e-readers released, but they are now one option among others rather than the default size. With Amazon updating the Paperwhite with a 6.8-inches screen, the entry-level Kindle is now the only 6-inches e-reader they sell. I can envisage Amazon releasing an Oasis 4 with a 7.8-inches screen to further distinguish it as the premium Kindle. It took some time, but the move beyond the 6-inches size is a welcome change. Those wanting something compact can still find a selection to choose from, e.g., the Likebook P6, Onyx Boox Poke 3, Kobo Nia, Kobo Clara HD and the entry-level Kindle. 

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