Do you like reading?
If yes, do you read from papers or screens (e-books)?
“E-book? Ah…I prefer papers because I like touching them so I am not interested in it”.
This is exactly what I used to say until a couple of years ago.
To be honest, I was not a book lover before I left Japan 7 years ago because I just did not know the virtue of reading (I had other priorities). Then I started reading to kill my time, because living in other country alone gave me a lot of free time, and I really liked chasing letters and creating the world in my mind out of them.
And as I moved out 5 times in New York, I came to conclude a simple but really important fact:
Books are heavy and take so much space!!
That’s why I decided to buy a e-book reader. But I faced with a familiar problem in the 21th century: there are too many choices.
After doing some researches on e-book device, I narrowed down to 3 options:
- Kobo (Rakuten)
- Nook (Barnes & Noble)
- Kindle (Amazon)
Then Again, it was tough to choose one because they are all so similar in design, function, battery, price, etc.
【Image: Nook, Kindle and Kobo (from left to right)】
Finally I made a decision of purchasing a kindle out of those three, for the following 8 reasons. (Probably other 2 might have some similar things, but as a whole, I chose the kindle over others.)
- Weight and space
- Good for eyes
- Integration of accounts
- Highlight function
1. Weight and space
My backpack must be happy because It weighs only about 200g and does not take so much space.
2. Good for eyes
One of the biggest reason I preferred papers over e-book was that the former tends to be less tiring than the latter. However, since Kindle uses e-ink which is supposedly as same as paper so that you don’t get tired. And so far I think it’s true because unlike with iPad, I can keep reading with Kindle. Of course you can adjust the brightness so you can read anywhere and anytime.
It can hold approximately 1,000 books!!
It’s around 100 USD. If you think it as a book shelf with a capacity of holding 1,000 books, it is worth investing.
5. Integration of accounts
Amazon has 2 companies: “.com” and “.co.jp” (Japanese books). Since I used to buy paper books via the latter when I returned to Japan and carried them in my suitcase, this was a revolution for me. By integrating both accounts, I don’t have to do that anymore and I can buy from both Amazon.
(*There is one caveat on this: To buy from Japanese account, you have to do it from Japan, so make sure you have someone in Japan who can buy books for you online. Thanks dad.)
The amazon says it will last 8 weeks and I thought Wow! But of course it depends on how much you use it. From my experience it lasts for around 30 hours, meaning if you read 2 hours everyday, you just need to charge every 2 weeks. Comparing to the i-phone which needs almost everyday’s charge, it is astonishing.
Although the final 3 options have similar designs as you can see the photo pasted above, I slightly liked the black color and round shaped corner that Kindle has. (Is it only me who finds the similarity with i-phone?)
By using built-in offline dictionaries, you can look up the vocabularies so it’s good to read books in other languages (I believe reading is one of the most effective way to learn language. ) You just need to tap the word you want to look up and the meaning and the use of the word comes up immediately.
9. Highlight function
We human beings all forget so that we take notes and highlight any part you like, and Kindle is no exception. Besides, thanks to the technology, you can review only your notes and highlights which you can copy and paste on Word or Evernote to make your own shelf of the book review. (This link explains how to do that).
Actually, the reason why I wanted to write about this topic was that I just finished reading an e-book and found this highlight function really useful. Maybe on my next blog entry I will share some highlights.
(*I still like papers, and I am not trying to sell Kindle.)