Complete Guide to e-Book Readers From A to Z

All About e-Book Readers

e-book readers provide delightful convenience to the bibliophile; they make it easy to carry a reasonably large library with you without weight or bulk. As the technology involved becomes more sophisticated, reading on an e-book reader is remarkably similar to reading from the pages of a book. Some devices offer you a remembered childhood pleasure: the ability to read at night under the covers.

If you are still on the fence deciding whether an e-book reader is a gadget you need, Bright Hub has collected the information you

Kindle Nook e-Book Reader line-up - Amazon and BN product images

need to make an informed decision.

Amazon’s Kindle – Is it King of the e-Book Readers?

The Kindle is often the first device that comes to mind when discussing e-books and e-book readers. Do you wonder how many other people have picked a Kindle for their choice of e-book reader? Do you need help with shortcuts, or troubleshooting your Kindle? Whether you want an analysis of Amazon's offer of an ad-sponsored Kindle or want to know where to look at a Kindle in person, before making a decision, Bright Hub gives the information you need.

Our guide to all things Kindle helps you pick the best version for your needs, set it up, and even teaches you how to remove unwanted books.

Nook’s Niche

Barnes & Noble's Nook brought a price drop to the battle of the e-book readers, along with a source of content comparably as deep as Amazon's. It also offered readers some of the features people were requesting, like user chargeable batteries, SD card slots, and more storage. Like the Kindle, the first Nook used a form of electronic ink (e-ink), and so, while it was easy to read outdoors, it needed an exterior light source. B&N also provides free content every time a Nook owner comes to a store, and lets readers browse through e-books while in the store. They were also the first to come out with a way for Nook owners to loan content they purchased to another Nook owner. The second generation of the device, the Nook Color, also had a back-lit screen. It was no longer quite so easy to read in direct sunlight, but did allow reading in bed without a light. Bright Hub also looks at the Nook as a small tablet running Android, and what it can do besides be an e-book reader.

Sony e-Book Readers

Sony e-book readers were among the earlier e-book readers, and are one of the survivors. They have gone through multiple iterations, and continue to make devices that can compete with Kindle and Nook. They are a viable alternative, although now not as competitively priced as the most recent Kindle and Nook models.

Children’s e-Book Readers

Children are an ideal audience for e-book readers. The sheer quantity of books available is exciting to young bookworms – and they are also appreciative of not lugging around a pile of books wherever they go. Many of the newer devices offer color, which means that e-book readers are of interest to children still in the picture book phase.

Lesser Known e-Book Readers

While almost everyone has heard of the Kindle and the Nook, and most people are aware you can read books on an iPad, there are many, many other e-book readers available. Some of them are well worth considering when you decide which e-book reader is the one for you … or the two, or even three for you. e-book readers have different features, and that means some are more suitable for outdoor use, or reading in bed, or multitasking, or any other combination of different ways people read books. Take a look at the many e-book readers available. We also offer some pointers on what not to buy.

e-Books and Where to Find Them

You have your e-book reader. A few books came with it – but as a dyed-in-the wool-bookworm, you need more. Where do you go to feed your habit? Check out the following suggestions for some great sources.

e-Book Hints, Tips and Troubleshooting

Even the easiest to use e-book readers can have quirks. And sometimes the included directions don't seem to make sense. Here are tips and hints to make your reading experience more pleasant.

e-Books, Libraries and Lending

Libraries loan books. They loan e-books too, but there can be a bit of a learning curve. Many use Adobe DRM e-books, and adding those to your device is not all that intuitive. Bright Hub makes it a little easier to navigate the virtual shelves. Nook, and now Kindle, are also adding the option to loan an e-book to a fellow device owner.

Comparing Different e-Book Readers

So, you've read reviews for a number of different e-book readers and many of them sound great. If you need a head-to-head comparison of specific e-book readers, Bright Hub has done a lot of the work for you. Check out these comparisons, and why one might prove more satisfactory for you than another.

Converting e-Book Types for Different e-Book Readers

e-books come in an astonishingly wide variety of formats. Many e-book readers can only display a few of those formats. There are a number of applications that convert one type of e-book format to another, and some work better than others. Most of them are applications you run on your computer and then put on your e-book reader via SD card or USB cable.

Covers and Accessories

I've been told all my life not to judge a book by its cover; sometimes it is good advice and other times, I have been sorry I went ahead and read that book with the vampiric being chewing messily on the neck of the partially disrobed and rather disheveled maiden. e-book readers are a special case – literally. Your e-book cover is usually the case that protects it and some do a better job than others.

There are also other useful accessories for e-book readers – especially if you like to read at night and have an e-ink display – which is a display type without an internal light source, unlike backlit e-book readers. Take a look at our best picks for those essential accessories.

Loading Non-Book Content on Your e-Book Reader

One of the exciting things about e-book readers is their ability to let you do more than read a book. Some are great for listening to your favorite books when you need your eyes on the road. Many let you carry an entire photo album around – of your kids, your pets, your hobbies, your last three vacations, or the flower arrangement that won first prize at the Garden Club. And many have the ability to play MP3 files. Here's how to put all that content onto your e-book reader.

e-Book Reader Apps

e-books do not always need to be read on an e-book reader. Digital content doesn't take up much room, and there is a lot of choice on how to view it. Whether you want an app for your smart phone or want to put some books on your netbook, laptop or iPad, there are good apps and not-so-good ones. Bright Hub has done the work to find you the best app for your device.

References

  • Image Credit: Amazon and Barnes & Noble product images.