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Compare the Best E-Book ReadersMay 2019

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What is the Kagoo Score? Our unique E-book readers rating which considers: 100 UK prices • 2,200 expert & user reviews • 91 product comparisons • 110 industry awards • Score breakdown
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Rank
Kagoo Score
Average Review Rating
Price
Touchscreen
Weight
Display Resolution
Diagonal
Available Colours
Release Date
#1

88

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Kobo logo

Kobo Aura H2O

136 Reviews
toptenreviews.com - BronzeDigitaltrends.com - Editor's ChoiceLes Numeriques.com - 5 StarExpert Reviews - Recommended

£137.99

Info
207g
Info
1440 X 1080 pixels
Info
6.8"
Info
Info
Mar 2017
#2

88

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Pocketbook logo

Pocketbook Touch HD 3

9 Reviews
computerbase.de - Recommendedkomputerswiat.pl - Best Product

£141.62

Info
155g
Info
1448 X 1072 pixels
1072 x 1448
Info
6"
Info
Info
Nov 2018
#3

87

 Compare  Shortlisted
Amazon logo

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite ‑ 8th Gen

241 Reviews
CNET.com - Editor's ChoiceTrusted Reviews - RecommendedPocket Lint - Editor's ChoiceExpert Reviews - Best Buy

£83.99

Info
161g
Info
800 X 600 pixels
Info
6"
Info
Info
Jun 2016
#4

86

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Kobo logo

Kobo Forma

20 Reviews
gadgetgear.nl - GoldDigitaltrends.com - Editor's Choicetechadvisor.co.uk - Recommended

£238.99

Info
197g
Info
1440 X 1920 pixels
Info
6"
Info
Info
Oct 2018
Voucher
#5

85

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Kobo logo

Kobo Clara HD

19 Reviews
Digitaltrends.com - Editor's Choicelog.com.tr - Editor's Choice

£89.99

Info
166g
Info
1024 X 758 pixels
Info
6"
Info
Info
Apr 2018
#6

85

 Compare  Shortlisted
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Pocketbook Touch Lux 4

11 Reviews

£102.90

Info
155g
Info
1024 X 758 pixels
758 x 1024
Info
6"
Info
Info
Sep 2018
#7

85

 Compare  Shortlisted
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Kobo Aura

106 Reviews
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£114.99

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174g
Info
1024 X 768 pixels
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6"
Info
Info
Jul 2016
#8

83

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Amazon Kindle Paperwhite ‑ 6th Gen

312 Reviews
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£99.99

Info
161g
Info
800 X 600 pixels
Info
6"
Info
Info
Feb 2013
#9

82

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Kobo Aura HD

96 Reviews
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£140.34

Info
240g
Info
1440 X 1080 pixels
Info
6.8"
Info
Info
Aug 2016
#10

81

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Amazon Kindle Touch ‑ 4th Gen

£59.99

Info
191g
Info
800 X 600 pixels
600 x 800
Info
6"
Info
Info
Oct 2013
#11

81

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Kobo Glo HD

74 Reviews
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No prices
found
Info
180g
Info
1448 X 1072 pixels
Info
6"
Info
Info
Apr 2015
#12

80

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Tolino Epos

3 Reviews

£246.22

Info
260g
Info
1872 X 1404 pixels
Info
7.8"
Info
Info
Oct 2017
#13

80

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Amazon Kindle Oasis ‑ 9th Gen

£304.99

Info
131g
Info
1440 X 1080 pixels
Info
7"
Info
(Unknown)
Info
Oct 2017
#14

79

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Tolino page

11 Reviews

£67.41

Info
170g
Info
800 X 600 pixels
Info
6"
Info
Info
Jan 2017
#15

78

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Tolino Shine 2HD

£120.20

Info
184g
Info
1448 X 1072 pixels
Info
6"
Info
Info
Jul 2017
#16

77

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Pocketbook Basic 3

£89.08

Info
170g
Info
800 X 600 pixels
Info
6"
Info
Info
Jun 2017
#17

77

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Onyx Boox Note

3 Reviews

£412.00

Info
355g
Info
1872 X 1404 pixels
Info
10.3"
Info
Info
Dec 2016
#18

77

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Pocketbook Basic Lux

2 Reviews

£96.53

Info
170g
Info
1024 X 758 pixels
Info
6"
Info
Info
Jun 2017
#19

76

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Icarus Illumina

10 Reviews

£291.60

Info
550g
Info
1024 X 768 pixels
Info
6"
Info
Info
Oct 2015
#20

76

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Amazon Kindle Voyage

No prices
found
Info
180g
Info
1024 X 768 pixels
Info
6"
Info
Info
Nov 2014

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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
Clara HD
£89.99
£13 cheaper
Two more awards
Better brand
VS
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Pocketbook
Touch Lux 4
£103.39
Newer by four
months
Moderately
lighter
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Amazon
Kindle Paperwhite - 8th Gen
£83.99
£5 cheaper
Better Kagoo
Score
More popular
VS
loading image
Pocketbook
Basic 3
£89.08
Newer by one
year
loading image
Amazon
Kindle Paperwhite - 8th Gen
£83.99
£19 cheaper
Better Kagoo
Score
More popular
VS
loading image
Pocketbook
Touch Lux 4
£103.39
Two years newer
Bigger display
resolution
Lighter
loading image
Amazon
Kindle Voyage
£244.99
Better brand
Bigger display
resolution
VS
loading image
Pocketbook
Touch Lux 4
£103.39
£142 cheaper
Better Kagoo
Score
Newer by four
years
loading image
Tolino
Shine 2HD
£120.20
Bigger display
resolution
VS
loading image
Kobo
Clara HD
£89.99
£30 cheaper
Two more awards
Better Kagoo
Score
loading image
Kobo
Aura
£114.99
Better Kagoo
Score
Eight more
awards
Better brand
VS
loading image
Tolino
Shine 2HD
£120.20
Bigger display
resolution
One year newer
loading image
Kobo
Aura HD
£140.34
£272 cheaper
Better Kagoo
Score
Eight more
awards
VS
loading image
Onyx
Boox Note
£412.00
Twice the
display
resolution
3.5" bigger
diagonal
Four months
newer
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Onyx
Boox Note
£412.00
Marginally
better expert
reviews
30% bigger
diagonal
VS
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Kobo
Forma
£238.99
£173 cheaper
Newer by 22
months
Better Kagoo
Score
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Amazon
Kindle Oasis - 9th Gen
£304.99
Better brand
Lighter
VS
loading image
Tolino
Epos
£246.22
£59 cheaper
Better Kagoo
Score
Twice the
display
resolution
loading image
Kobo
Aura
£114.99
Better Kagoo
Score
More popular
Eight more
awards
VS
loading image
Pocketbook
Basic 3
£89.08
£26 cheaper
Newer by 11
months
Marginally
lighter
loading image
Kobo
Aura HD
£140.34
£106 cheaper
Better Kagoo
Score
Eight more
awards
VS
loading image
Tolino
Epos
£246.22
Newer by 15
months
1872 x 1404
pixels pixels
resolution
Bigger
diagonal
loading image
Amazon
Kindle Paperwhite - 8th Gen
£83.99
£6 cheaper
Better Kagoo
Score
More popular
VS
loading image
Kobo
Clara HD
£89.99
23 months newer
Better
Digitaltrends.c
om review score
Twice the
display
resolution
loading image
Kobo
Aura H2O
£137.99
Better Kagoo
Score
More popular
Six more awards
VS
loading image
Pocketbook
Touch HD 3
£141.62
Newer by 21
months
Better expert
reviews
52g lighter
loading image
Kobo
Clara HD
£89.99
£52 cheaper
Better brand
VS
loading image
Pocketbook
Touch HD 3
£141.62
More popular
Better Kagoo
Score
Much better
expert reviews
loading image
Kobo
Aura H2O
£137.99
Better Kagoo
Score
Eight more
awards
1440 x 1080
pixels pixels
resolution
VS
loading image
Tolino
Shine 2HD
£120.20
£18 cheaper
Four months
newer
Lighter
loading image
Tolino
Epos
£246.22
Bigger
diagonal
VS
loading image
Kobo
Forma
£238.99
Three more
awards
Better Kagoo
Score
Overall reviews
are appreciably
better
loading image
Kobo
Aura HD
£140.34
Six more awards
Better brand
1440 x 1080
pixels pixels
resolution
VS
loading image
Pocketbook
Touch HD 3
£141.62
Better Kagoo
Score
Newer by two
years
Better
Tweakers.net
review score
loading image
Tolino
Shine 2HD
£120.20
Better brand
Twice the
display
resolution
VS
loading image
Pocketbook
Touch Lux 4
£103.39
£17 cheaper
Better Kagoo
Score
More popular
loading image
Kobo
Aura H2O
£137.99
Better Kagoo
Score
Eight more
awards
Better brand
VS
loading image
Pocketbook
Touch Lux 4
£103.39
£35 cheaper
18 months newer
More popular
All E-Book Reader Comparisons

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-Book Reader Prices

We currently list 26 ereaders ranging from £42 to £590. The average price of a new E-book reader is £174 and 80% of E-readers are priced between £83 and £305. The cheapest E-book reader that we found is the Amazon Kindle Touch - 4th Gen at only £43, and the most expensive is the Onyx Boox Max 2 at £590.

Ereader Brands - Price Range

The highest average E-book reader price out of all brands is Onyx ereaders with an average price of £501. Onyx ereaders range in price from £412 to £590.

Icarus ereaders range in price from £323 to £323, and the second highest average E-reader price out of all brands is Icarus ereaders with an average price of £323.

Kobo E-book readers start at £90 and their most expensive E-book reader costs £275. The average price of Kobo E-book readers is £162 which is the third highest average price of all E-book reader brands.

E-Reader Brands - Average Ratings

We have checked 841 expert reviews and 633 user reviews for E-book readers and used these reviews to evaluate the average rating for each brand of ereader.

Biggest E-Book Reader Retailers

The biggest E-reader retailer by number of products currently for sale is Amazon UK. We found 24 current E-reader offers from Amazon UK. The second biggest retailer is eBay with 15 offers. That means Amazon UK is much bigger than eBay when it comes to E-book readers. John Lewis is the third biggest retailer with 5 current offers.

When Are Most New Ereaders Released?

Most new ereaders tend to be released between May and July. That means that most of the latest E-reader technology was released in within the last 3 months, and now is good time to buy. May was the biggest month last year for new E-readers, with three new E-readers released that month. In 2017 most new E-readers were released in July, with five new E-readers released that month. The biggest month in 2016 for new E-book reader releases was September, with 13 new ereaders released that month.

How Fast Do E-Book Reader Prices Drop After Release?

On average E-readers drop in price by 8% in the first 6 months after release. On a typical new E-book reader costing £174, by waiting 6 months before buying you could save on average £14.

Weights

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

The weights of E-readers range from 110.2g to 550g. The weights of most E-readers range from 160g to 200g. The Onyx Boox Max 2, which is priced at £590.00, has the heaviest weight and is a 550g ereader. The Amazon Kindle Oasis - 9th Gen, which can be purchased for £304.99, has the lightest weight and is a 131g E-book 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.

Of the 79 new E-book readers currently listed on Kagoo, the vast majority are ereaders with a touchscreen. 67 E-book readers (85%) are ereaders 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.

We found 21 E-readers that are E-readers that have a resolution of 800 x 600 pixels, which makes this the most popular display resolution amongst new E-readers. 1024 x 758 pixels is the second most common display resolution amongst new ereaders. We found 18 ereaders that are ereaders 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.

Comparing all ereaders, the diagonals range from 5" to 13.3". The diagonals of most E-book readers range from 6" to 6.5". The Onyx Boox Max 2, which can be purchased for £590.00, has the biggest diagonal and is a 13.3" E-book reader. The E-book reader with the smallest diagonal is the Energy Sistem eReader Pro 4, which is a 6" E-book reader and is priced at £157.73.

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-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 E-readers. 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-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 E-readers by counting the number of cheapest prices for that retailer, makes the retailers that offer the greatest number of E-book reader prices more likely to offer the greatest number of cheapest prices. The chart below considers the proportion of each retailer's E-book reader prices that are the cheapest compared to other retailers. The cheapest retailer that we found using this approach was Amazon UK. 79.2% of their E-reader prices were the cheapest that could be found anywhere.

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