Amazon Kindle owners have it flattering good. With a vast library of stream bestsellers, aged favorites, educational publications, comics, and magazines to select from, there’s small possibility of ever entrance adult brief of something to read, generally when we chuck Kindle Unlimited and a ability to share purchased books with members of your family into a mix. Kindle e-readers are good made, pleasing to use, and accessible during a series of cost points. Amazon’s attention prevalence is such that many other e-reader manufacturers hang on to diminutive slices of a marketplace with usually a smallest of finger holds.
And afterwards there’s Rakuten’s Kobo.
Over a past few years, Rakuten has revamped a e-readers’ pattern language, grown singular technologies that Amazon can usually dream of baking into a Kindle hardware and, maybe many importantly, tremendously stretched a accumulation of calm accessible for download. The formula of their efforts cap in a company’s latest device: The Kobo Aura H20 Edition 2. It’s a $180 waterproof e-reader designed to go toe-to-toe with Amazon’s flagship e-reader, a Kindle Oasis.
With a 5.08 by 6.77 by 0.33-inch measure and a weight of 7.3 ounces, a Edition 2 weighs and feels some-more like a current-generation Kindle Paperwhite than Kobo’s first-generation Aura H20. Gone is a strange model’s particular bony backplate, that we desired as it was easy to keep a reason on. In a place, you’ll find a flat, textured cosmetic backplate with a energy symbol placed high and to a left. It’s a same design, nonetheless scaled down, as we get with a glorious Kobo Aura One. we found a Edition 2 still easy to hold, and a weight is roughly unnoticeable while carrying it in my backpack.
As a name implies, a Aura H2O Edition 2 is waterproof, braggadocio an IPX rating of X8. This means that a e-reader isn’t rated for dirt incursion, though it can sojourn submerged in dual meters of H2O for adult to one hour. Taking a Edition 2 to a village swimming pool, we found this rating to be accurate. It was still organic after 45 mins of submersion.
Anyone who enjoys holding their e-reader to a beach or plowing by pages poolside will be gratified by this feature. That said, if we were formulation on doing a bit of reading underwater, ready for disappointment: The some-more of a glass we get on a Edition 2, a some-more of a possibility there is of pronounced glass triggering a device’s touchscreen in astonishing ways. This can lead to we losing your mark in a book, unintentionally highlighting sections of a book, or any series of other frustrating results. This is disappointing, deliberation that a strange Aura H2O came with program facilities to safeguard that this would not happen.
Provided we keep a e-reader dry, you’ll be gratified with a Edition 2’s performance. Apart from a power/sleep button, there are no other earthy control on a device. Page turns, selections from a reader’s menu, and purchases from a Kobo store are all done around touchscreen.
As many as I’ve grown to suffer a page-turn buttons on a stream tip pick, a Kindle Oasis, we never missed them while regulating a Edition 2. we found a device’s capacitative arrangement to be supportive adequate to register many requests we done of it on a initial attempt. But, and this is an comprehensive win, a Edition 2’s OS is intelligent adequate to know that not each random toy of a arrangement means that it needs to spin a page or offer adult an options menu. And with 8GB of storage, you’ll always have adequate room for your reading element of choice.
In a corresponding comparison of a Kindle Oasis’ arrangement and that of a Edition 2, we couldn’t detect any disproportion in readability between a dual devices. In fact, a Edition 2 beats out Amazon’s Oasis by charity a wider collection of fonts, an easier to use interface for changing sum like calm size, line spacing, and backlighting. The latter is higher to what Amazon’s hardware now offers, too: At sundown, it switches from a white heat to an orange one that totally eliminates light issued in a blue spectrum, creation it a good choice for reading before bed. The Edition 2’s backlighting, on a other hand, was disproportionate in some places, compared to a Kindle Oasis’ and Kindle Paperwhite’s—but not so many so that we would call out a lighting on a Edition 2 as a critical issue.
In a past, one of a biggest problems with shopping a non-Kindle e-reader is that they can’t entrance Amazon’s marketplace with a miraculous preference of books and periodicals. This has spin reduction of an emanate for Kobo hardware owners lately. While a volume of calm accessible in a Kobo store is still lilliputian by what Amazon offers to Kindle owners, many readers won’t feel shorted when a time comes to find a new book. we couldn’t find any stream bestselling novella or non-fiction book from a vital edition residence in Amazon’s store that wasn’t also accessible in a Kobo store. In some cases, however, a book sole in a Kobo Store cost a bit some-more than it did during Amazon. Not meddlesome in shopping books from either online shop? No problem: The Edition 2 can also hoop side-loaded EPUB, EPUB3, PDF, MOBI, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP, TIFF, TXT, HTML, RTF, CBZ, and CBR files, too.
Despite this resources of content, we was some-more than a small unhappy to learn that Rakuten’s OverDrive digital library service is nowhere to be found. This is surprising, given how many value it lends to any device it’s on.
The bottom line
The Kobo Aura H20 Edition 2 is a waterproof and feature-packed e-reader that, supposing they’ve not already amassed a vast library of Amazon Kindle eBooks, that any book partner will enjoy—provided we don’t try to use it while it’s wet.