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Compare the Best E-Book ReadersSeptember 2018

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87

Kagoo Score - Our unique E-book readers rating considers: 280 UK prices • 4,000 expert & user reviews • 85 product comparisons • 230 industry awards • Score breakdown
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Rank
Kagoo Score
Average Review Rating
Price
Touchscreen
Weight
Display Resolution
Diagonal
Release Date
Voucher
#1

90

Kobo Aura H2O

126 Reviews
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 Add to Shortlist / Compare  Shortlisted

£137.99

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207g
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1440 X 1080 pixels
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6.8"
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Mar 2017
The best scoring E-book reader under £500, with a gold award from one expert review website and 6 further awards from other expert sites
#3

89

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite ‑ 8th Gen

578 Reviews
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£105.00

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161g
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800 X 600 pixels
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6"
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Jun 2016
An amazingly light weight and best selling touchscreen 800 x 600 pixels resolution E-book reader, with a very good price and good features
#4

87

Kobo Glo HD

74 Reviews
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£107.99

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180g
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1448 X 1072 pixels
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6"
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Apr 2015
A multi award winning and high-quality 180g touchscreen ereader, with an Editor's Choice award from two expert review websites and 6 further awards from other expert sites
#5

86

Kobo AURA One

51 Reviews
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£189.95

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230g
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1872 X 1404 pixels
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7.8"
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Jul 2016
A multi award winning and top of the range 230g touchscreen E-book reader, with a good price
#6

83

Pocketbook Touch HD Ruby Red

12 Reviews
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£132.62

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180g
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1448 X 1072 pixels
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6"
Info
Oct 2016
A fully featured and award winning 180g touchscreen ereader
#7

83

Amazon Kindle Touch ‑ 4th Gen

84 Reviews
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£59.95

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191g
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800 X 600 pixels
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6"
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Oct 2013
A very good value for money and best selling 191g touchscreen ereader, with an Editor's Choice award from two expert review websites and 10 further awards from other expert sites
#8

82

Kobo Clara HD

4 Reviews
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£100.08

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166g
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1024 X 758 pixels
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6"
Info
Apr 2018
A newly released and cheap 166g touchscreen E-book reader, with an Editor's Choice award from one expert review website
#9

81

Kobo Aura HD

99 Reviews
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£219.95

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240g
Info
1440 X 1080 pixels
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6.8"
Info
Aug 2016
A multi award winning and top-quality 240g touchscreen ereader, with a gold award from one expert review website and 7 further awards from other expert sites
#10

81

Denver EBO‑620

 Add to Shortlist / Compare  Shortlisted

£70.50

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400g
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1024 X 758 pixels
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5"
Info
Jul 2018
A newly released and low cost 180g touchscreen E-reader, with great features
#11

80

Amazon Kindle Oasis ‑ 9th Gen

 Add to Shortlist / Compare  Shortlisted

£229.99

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131g
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1440 X 1080 pixels
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7"
Info
Oct 2017
A very popular and astonishingly light weight touchscreen 1440 x 1080 pixels resolution ereader, with features
#13

79

Bookeen Cybook Muse Light

10 Reviews
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£109.90

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170g
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800 X 600 pixels
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6"
Info
May 2018
A new and award winning 170g touchscreen ereader, with a fair price and good features
#14

79

Tolino vision 4 HD

12 Reviews
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£202.94

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175g
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1448 X 1072 pixels
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6"
Info
Nov 2016
A critically acclaimed and fully loaded 175g touchscreen E-book reader
#15

79

Pocketbook Touch HD 2

3 Reviews
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£149.87

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180g
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1448 X 1072 pixels
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6"
Info
Dec 2017
A top of the range and award winning 180g touchscreen E-book reader
#16

78

Pocketbook Basic 3

 Add to Shortlist / Compare  Shortlisted

£79.55

Info
170g
Info
800 X 600 pixels
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6"
Info
Jun 2017
A fairly new and great value for money 170g touchscreen E-reader, with good features
#17

78

Tolino Vision 3 HD

11 Reviews
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£172.45

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174g
Info
1448 X 1072 pixels
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6"
Info
Nov 2015
A critically acclaimed and top-quality 174g touchscreen E-book reader
#18

77

Amazon B0186FESVC

 Add to Shortlist / Compare  Shortlisted

£59.95

Info
161g
Info
800 X 600 pixels
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6"
Info
Jul 2016
A very good value for money but 2 year old 161g touchscreen ereader, with good features
#19

77

Pocketbook Touch Lux 3

13 Reviews
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£108.20

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208g
Info
1024 X 758 pixels
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6"
Info
Apr 2017
A fairly new and award winning 208g touchscreen ereader, with an Editor's Choice award from one expert review website and 2 further awards from other expert sites
#20

76

Energy Sistem eReader Slim HD

 Add to Shortlist / Compare  Shortlisted

£79.99

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176g
Info
1024 X 758 pixels
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6"
Info
Feb 2016
A breathtakingly good value for money and good spec 176g 1024 x 758 pixels resolution ereader

76

Billow E03FL

 Add to Shortlist / Compare  Shortlisted

£85.72

Info
158g
Info
800 X 600 pixels
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6"
Info
May 2017
A good value for money and astonishingly light weight 800 x 600 pixels resolution 6" E-reader, with good features

75

Tolino Epos

 Add to Shortlist / Compare  Shortlisted

£246.89

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260g
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1872 X 1404 pixels
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7.8"
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Oct 2017
A top of the range and fairly new 260g touchscreen ereader

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Today's Best E-Book Reader Deals

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Trending E-Book Reader Comparisons

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Kobo
Aura H2O
£137.99
£65 cheaper
Better brand
VS
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Tolino
vision 4 HD
£202.94
Better expert
reviews
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Kobo
AURA One
£189.95
£13 cheaper
Better brand
VS
loading image
Tolino
vision 4 HD
£202.94
Expert reviews
are marginally
better
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Kobo
Aura
£19.82
£103 cheaper
More popular
Better brand
VS
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Tolino
Shine 2 HD
£123.10
Expert reviews
are slightly
better
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Kobo
Aura
£19.82
£88 cheaper
More popular
Five more
awards
VS
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Pocketbook
Touch Lux 3
£108.20
Moderately
better expert
reviews
loading image
Kobo
Aura H2O
£137.99
Better brand
More popular
VS
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Tolino
Shine 2 HD
£123.10
£15 cheaper
Expert reviews
are slightly
better
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Amazon
Kindle Paperwhite - 8th Gen
£105.00
£98 cheaper
Better brand
VS
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Tolino
vision 4 HD
£202.94
A little better
expert reviews
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Kobo
Aura H2O
£137.99
£12 cheaper
More popular
Seven more
awards
VS
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Pocketbook
Touch HD 2
£149.87
Considerably
better expert
reviews
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Amazon
Kindle Paperwhite - 8th Gen
£105.00
£45 cheaper
More popular
18 more awards
VS
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Pocketbook
Touch HD 2
£149.87
Expert reviews
are appreciably
better
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Tolino
Shine 2 HD
£123.10
Better expert
reviews
VS
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Pocketbook
Basic Lux
£90.84
£32 cheaper
Better brand
More popular
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Kobo
Aura H2O
£137.99
Five more
awards
More popular
Better brand
VS
loading image
Pocketbook
Touch Lux 3
£108.20
£30 cheaper
Marginally
better expert
reviews
loading image
Kobo
Aura H2O
£137.99
Seven more
awards
More popular
Better brand
VS
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Pocketbook
Touch HD Ruby Red
£132.62
Expert reviews
are better
loading image
Pocketbook
Touch Lux 3
£108.20
£95 cheaper
Better brand
VS
loading image
Tolino
vision 4 HD
£202.94
A bit better
expert reviews
loading image
Kobo
Aura
£19.82
£183 cheaper
Better brand
VS
loading image
Tolino
vision 4 HD
£202.94
Better expert
reviews
loading image
Kobo
Aura H2O
£137.99
£34 cheaper
More popular
Better brand
VS
loading image
Tolino
Vision 3 HD
£172.45
Moderately
better expert
reviews
loading image
Kobo
AURA One
£189.95
Three more
awards
More popular
Better brand
VS
loading image
Pocketbook
Touch HD Ruby Red
£132.62
£57 cheaper
Better expert
reviews
loading image
Tolino
Vision 3 HD
£172.45
Better brand
VS
loading image
Energy Sistem
eReader ScreenLight HD
£136.49
£36 cheaper
More popular
loading image
Kobo
Aura
£19.82
£153 cheaper
More popular
Better brand
VS
loading image
Tolino
Vision 3 HD
£172.45
Expert reviews
are better

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

QWhat is the average battery life of an e-book reader?
AMost e-book readers have a battery life of several weeks, perhaps as long as several months if not used regularly.
QHow do I put books onto an e-reader?
AMost e-readers have a link to a dedicated store, where you can buy and download books. Some also allow you to add books and documents directly via USB.
QWhat is the difference between a back light and a front light?
ABacklights are placed behind the screen, and shine light through the screen in order to make it readable. Frontlights are placed in front and to the side of the screen - they shine light down onto the screen rather than through it. This means the light isn't shining directly into your eyes, making it softer and easier to read at night.

E-Book Reader Buying Guide

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What is an E-Book Reader?

E-book readers have quickly become a common site on trains, planes and subways the world over - a simple tablet dedicated to displaying book in the simplest, most natural way possible. With excellent battery life, easy-to-read screens and capacity for thousands of books at once, e-book readers are a good way to make sure you always have something to read on your commute or holiday!

Most e-readers use a technology called ‘e-ink’ to display the books - this is uses microscopic particles suspected in a liquid film under the screen. Some of these particles are positively charged and coloured white, and others negatively charged and coloured black. By running a charge through the liquid, the white or black particles can come to the surface, allowing letters and text to form.

Because the charge is only required when the text changes, e-ink has an extremely low power draw - power is normally only used when the page is ‘turned’ (refreshed). This means that most e-readers have an extremely long battery life - they can last for weeks and even months between charges, depending on how fast you read.

Benefit of an E-book reader over mobiles/tables

When e-readers were introduced, many people wondered - you have your phone/tablet with you already, why not just use that to read books, and save yourself having to carry around another device? A fair question, and e-readers have multiple advantages over using your phone:

  • The e-ink display draws very little power, meaning you won’t use much power, compared to draining your phone/tablet battery reading on it.
  • E-ink displays are also very easy on the eye, and can help prevent eye strain caused by long reading sessions.
  • Most e-readers have a larger display than phones, making reading easier and also helping to ease eye strain.
  • E-readers are free from notifications, apps and other distractions that would stop you from concentrating on your book.

That said, if you do want to read books on your phone/tablet, many of the major e-reader makers have apps for those devices, allowing you to start reading a book on one device and pick it up seamlessly on another, so you can have your literary cake and eat it too.

Display

One of the biggest concerns when picking an e-book reader is the display. The quality of the text on an e-reader display is measured in Dots Per Inch (DPI). The higher the DPI, the more particles make up each letter on the screen, leading to smoother, clearer text that is easier to read. Most e-readers have a DPI of somewhere around 2-300, although top-tier models can rise as high as 600 DPI, for extremely crisp and clear text.

Tied into the DPI is the size of the display. Most e-readers are the size of small tablets - slightly larger than a paperback book. There are larger models - some go as large as 8”, meaning they are more unwieldy to carry, but can display more/larger text at once.

Battery Life

As mentioned above, because e-readers draw very little power, they have a very good battery life. Even the most basic of e-readers will have a battery life of weeks, with many able to function for a month or more between charges. Some higher-end readers have larger batteries, but these are only worth seeking out if you spend a long time travelling or away from any power - for most people a month’s charge will be more than enough.

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Wifi/4g Connectivity

Nearly all e-readers apart from the very cheap models will have some form of wifi connection to allow the device to connect to the internet to download new books. Some more expensive models will also have 3G connectivity, meaning it can connect to the net from anywhere, and doesn’t have to be on a known wifi network. This can be helpful since it allows you to buy and download new books from anywhere - even half-way round the world - as long as you have a cell phone signal.

Ebooks themselves are very small files, since they usually lack any images/video/etc. This means that even a modest e-reader can hold hundreds, if not thousands of ebooks at once. Some readers have more capacity than the norm, but most users will struggle to fill even half of a standard reader’s capacity.

Stores

The biggest difference between all the various ranges of e-readers is the online stores they have access to. This denotes what books you can buy at what price. Kindle’s only have access to the Amazon store, while the Kobo reader has it’s own store. Amazon is far-and-away the biggest of these stores, but it doesn’t contain everything - and some of it’s publishing policies rub people the wrong way. Other stores have their own positives and negatives, so it is worthwhile does a bit of checking to see if the store for your chosen reader has a good selection before you commit to buying it.

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File Formats

Alongside buying books from an online store, it is also possible to load books onto an e-reader as individual files. These files could be downloaded from a different store, received directly from the publisher (in the case of small independent labels) or even your own work.

Different e-readers have support for different types of files. One of the most popular file format is the epub (electronic publication) file - these are used for a lot of publicly available books, such as Project Guttenberg, which aims to make much of the classic literature in the world available freely. However the Kindle doesn’t directly support the epub format - meaning you’ll have to transfer it to another format if you want to use it.

If you are going to be using e-readers for independent (non-store) files a lot, it’s worth taking a look at ‘Calibre’, which is a free program for converting ebook files between different formats. The site is here: Calibre

Backlights

One of the most helpful additions to e-readers is a backlight. While lacking in very cheap models, most mid-range readers have a light built into the screen, which allows you to read in low-light conditions. Many have several different levels of brightness as well - higher brightness can be helpful in certain situations, but lower brightness will help conserve battery power.

Waterproofing

Waterproofing is currently limited to a small collection of e-readers, but is immensely helpful if you can get it. Having a water-resistant device means that you can happily read everywhere from the beach to the bath, and don’t have to worry about damaging your device if it gets a bit damp.

E-Book Reader Retailers, Prices and Features

E-Reader Prices

The price range of ereaders is from £16 to £600 and in total we found prices for 38 ereaders. The average price of a new ereader is £143 and 80% of ereaders are priced between £60 and £245. The Energy Sistem eReader Pro HD is the cheapest E-book reader at only £16, and Onyx Boox Max 2 is the most expensive at £599.

E-Reader Brands - Price Range

Onyx ereaders range in price from £427 to £599, and the average price of Onyx ereaders is £513 which is the highest average price of all E-book reader brands.

Tolino E-readers range in price from £130 to £245, and the average price of Tolino E-readers is £188 which is the second highest average price of all E-reader brands.

Onyx BOOX E-book readers start at £77 and their most expensive E-book reader costs £353. The third highest average E-book reader price out of all brands is Onyx BOOX E-book readers with an average price of £183.

E-Reader Brands - Average Ratings

We have analysed 767 expert reviews and 712 user reviews for ereaders available online and used this data to evaluate the average rating for each brand of ereader.

Biggest Ereader Retailers

We found 29 current offers for E-readers from Amazon UK making it the biggest E-reader retailer. That is much bigger than the second biggest retailer, eBay for whom we found 16 current offers for E-readers. The third biggest retailer is Currys with 5 current E-reader offers.

When Are Most New E-Book Readers Released?

July to September is the most common period for new ereaders to be released in. That means that most of the latest E-book reader technology was released in within the last 3 months, and now is good time to buy. July was the biggest month in 2017 for new ereaders, with four new ereaders released that month. The biggest month in 2016 for new ereader releases was September, with 13 new ereaders released that month. In 2015 most new ereaders were released in June, with six new ereaders released that month.

How Fast Do E-Reader Prices Drop After Release?

New ereaders drop in price by an average of 12% in the first 6 months after they wer first released. If you are prepared to wait then you could save an average of £17 on a typical £143 new E-book reader by waiting 6 months before buying.

Weights

'Weight' denotes the weight of the e-reader, measured in grams (g).

Across the range of E-book readers, the weights range from 131g to 550g. The weights of most ereaders range from 180g to 220g. The Icarus Illumina, which currently retails for £122.63, has the heaviest weight and is a 550g E-reader. The Amazon Kindle Oasis - 9th Gen, which sells for £204.99, has the lightest weight and is a 131g E-reader.

A lighter device will be easier to carry around, and mean it can be held and read for longer without it getting uncomfortable to hold.

Touchscreens

'Touchscreen' denotes whether the e-reader has touch capacity or not, meaning you can control the device by poking the screen, rather than manual controls.

The vast majority of the 73 new E-readers currently listed on Kagoo are E-book readers with a touchscreen. 85% of E-readers are E-book readers with a touchscreen.

Touchscreen controls are user faster and easier to use than standard manual controls.

Display Resolutions

'Display Resolution' denotes how many pixels make up the display of the e-reader.

Amongst new E-book readers, the most frequently found display resolution is 800 x 600 pixels. We found 21 E-book readers that are ereaders that have a resolution of 800 x 600 pixels. The second most popular display resolution amongst new E-readers is 1024 x 758 pixels. We found 16 E-readers that are E-readers that have a resolution of 1024 x 758 pixels.

A larger display resolution means that the text will be sharper and clearer, making it easier to read books on the device, and reducing the chances of eye-strain after long sessions.

Diagonals

'Diagonal' denotes the size of the e-reader, measured in inches from the top-left to bottom-right corner.

The diagonals of E-book readers range from 6" to 13.3". The diagonals of most E-readers range from 6" to 6.5". The E-book reader with the biggest diagonal is the Onyx BOOX N96, which is a 9.7" E-reader and is on sale for £352.99. The Denver EBO-620, which is priced at £61.88, has the smallest diagonal and is a 6" E-book reader.

A larger size means that there is more real estate on the e-reader to display books, and the device can display text at a larger font size if needed.

Which Are the Cheapest Retailers for E-Book Readers?

The chart below helps you decide which retailer is normally cheapest for buying E-book readers. For each retailer it shows the total number of E-book readers where they currently have a market leading price. The chart below helps you decide which retailer is normally cheapest for buying ereaders. For each retailer we took all of their prices and looked at what proportion of those prices where the cheapest on the market. The cheapest retailer that we found was Amazon UK. 19 of their E-book reader prices were the cheapest that could be found anywhere.

Proportion of E-Book Readers for Which Each Retailer is Cheapest?

Assessing how cheap each retailer is for ereaders by counting the number of cheapest prices for that retailer, makes the retailers that offer the greatest number of ereader prices more likely to offer the greatest number of cheapest prices. The chart below considers the proportion of each retailer's ereader prices that are the cheapest compared to other retailers. The cheapest retailer that we found using this approach was Amazon UK. 65.5% of their E-reader prices were the cheapest that could be found anywhere.

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