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Old 11-07-2010, 09:09 PM   #76
SensualPoet
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I don't feel forgotten, and I'm an original user (11:15 am May 1st to be precise). The deal I was offered:

• $150 vs nearly $300 for a Kindle (with shipping)
• twice as much on board memory than the leading ePub ereader
• expandable memory through an SD card
• ePub DRM through Adobe for multi-vendor ebook shopping
• local and Canadian content thanks to kobobooks.com
• direct access to public library content on my ereader (legally)
• a stripped down interface -- no web, no social media, no accidental on device purchases
• PDF DRM through Adobe
• access (coming soon) to newspapers and magazine subscriptions

All of the above was true the day I sealed the deal and handed over my cash and remains so today. I got exactly the value for money I signed up for.

Yes, there have been a few struggles: primarily, the font issue which took through the end of June to resolve (it affected ePubs, not Kobo files loaded directly through the Kobo desktop app which, we now know, are loaded to a database and are not actually ePubs). And, newspapers still can't be read (purchased from Kobo) on my OK (Original Kobo) device. But, they are still "coming soon" which is the deal I signed for ... *grins*.

Balancing this: Kobo is a tiny operation relative to its rivals -- I dare say a significant portion of the programming team has posted something here. And they are running a 24/7 global organisation that has had products in market for barely six months and, frankly, by modern corporate standards, have done a bang up job as far as customer transparency goes.

And it is reassuring to note they have been laying the foundation for a much larger vision -- the best guarantee we OK owners have that there will be a Kobo around to support us in the future. Kobo has a fully multi-platform strategy supporting their own devices, cousin devices (Literati et al), tablets (iPad, Galaxy), PCs, Macs, Blackberry, Android, iPhone and localised content for Canada, US, Australia/New Zealand and, I understand, UK. They've managed to survive the industry price cuts from $259 to $139 within 2 weeks of their launch into the US market; they've brought out a K1.5 Wifi model with a faster processor three months after that US launch and in time to fill the sales channel ahead of all important xmas sales. They've done a deal with Walmart in Canada and the US, for heaven's sake! Little Kobo! The Blue Button eReader That Could!

So ... I believe Kobo has delivered everything it promised when I signed up and I am very encouraged that the future is bright for me as an ongoing customer.
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Old 11-07-2010, 09:11 PM   #77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Running Man View Post
Just a note - you can actually read newspapers on the Original Kobo EReader.
It should be possible also to use Calibre's Fetch News feature to read the news on the original Kobo. Pretty well-formatted, and although the presentation suffers slightly from Kobo's inability to make use of the hyperlinks, the TOC usually makes up for it.

Altihough it would be a pain to fetch the news for any wifi-less ereader every day, I tend to use Calibre's Fetch News feature with weekly periodicals which aren't so time-relevant and are meatier reads. I've been doing this with The Economist for the past few weeks, and the weekly connecting the ereader to the computer also tops up the battery.
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Old 11-08-2010, 12:16 AM   #78
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They've managed to survive the industry price cuts from $259 to $139 within 2 weeks of their launch into the US market; they've brought out a K1.5 Wifi model with a faster processor three months after that US launch and in time to fill the sales channel ahead of all important xmas sales. They've done a deal with Walmart in Canada and the US, for heaven's sake! Little Kobo! The Blue Button eReader That Could!

So ... I believe Kobo has delivered everything it promised when I signed up and I am very encouraged that the future is bright for me as an ongoing customer.
You know, I was skeptical at first about the Kobo...I really wanted a Kindle (because it was more fancy shmancy...just seemed to have more features for around the same price). But - there were two factors that lead me to buying the Kobo: 1. Library books/epub format; 2. Canadian company/warranty/support.

I am actually quite proud of Kobo - I think your post is bang-on. They've really done an amazing job in a short period of time. I think they have a lot of potential for the future.

As for their current product - it does everything I want it to do, so I am satisfied. I wish I could replace the batteries and extend its life, but we'll see about longevity....
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Old 11-08-2010, 12:47 AM   #79
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Yes, it is cute to have a Canadian company compete and we as Canadians should support them. However, again, they've failed on the following:

1. Failed to deliver newspaper support four weeks after launch, in the summer, in the fall, in October, and in November. Perhaps December or sometime in 2011 is more realistic, but having them promise something over and over and over and ... and fail to deliver is failure. Simple.

2. Desktop software and firmware testing. Numerous issues, as we all know. Navigate these very forums for various user stories.

3. Support. Two times I sent out e-mails for seperate issues. First time I received a response after one week and the second time I received irregular back and forth communication that lasted 5 weeks. Their solution after 5 weeks? No solution - wait for future update.

So again, yes it is cute to have a small Canadian company competing against the giants (i.e., Amazon), however to say that "Kobo has delivered everything it promised" is not keen observation on your part. You either have a connection with Kobo in saying that, or are not a smart buyer and observer of the products you buy.

I do enjoy my original Kobo device. It does what it does -- allow me to read books with a basic user experience. Nothing wrong with that at all. My point is that they've, as an organization, shown no respect to their customers. When making promises did they not know that they could not meet them? Did anyone think to provide an update to the newspaper feature? The same message has greeted us since the launch: 'coming soon'. Silly us for expecting something that was marketed by the very company that sold us the device.

Last edited by KoboNo; 11-08-2010 at 12:50 AM.
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Old 11-08-2010, 12:58 AM   #80
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As an additional note, speaking with an industry professional, it came to us that Kobo would help their failures and winning back their original customers by offering them something as a 'sorry'. No, not a silly few-buck coupon for a book. How about something more substantial? You messed up. You supposedly respect your original customers. Show us.

We'll all be in the market for a new device in the next 12 to 24 months. Now's the time to keep your original customers, Kobo, not later.
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Old 11-08-2010, 01:41 AM   #81
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Originally Posted by KoboNo View Post
2. Desktop software and firmware testing. Numerous issues, as we all know. Navigate these very forums for various user stories.
It happens all around the world. For proprietary and open source.
Just go to kindle forums.

Quote:
"Kobo has delivered everything it promised" is not keen observation on your part. You either have a connection with Kobo in saying that, or are not a smart buyer and observer of the products you buy.
If you know the guy, I'll take that. Otherwise, it was not a good idea
to have a product from new manufacturer at all. Stars went to the
correct place and reader worked well. Papers call people like us "early
adopters". I never buy something not known, since I rarely buy things.
Kobo was the one. Did they disappointed me? No. Did I trust every-
thing? No. Could I manage better at the time I bought it? No. I would
have it as it is or I would not have it. I see that papers are the key
point. And I'm sure it is possible to have it on the k1, just do not want
to spend time to find it out. Why not? I don't want to read papers on
the k1. The whole process takes software change on desktop app and
on the reader itself. Kernel has to recognize usb adapter as a host.
Desktop has to handle papers and send them properly to the device.
To match various outlooks and tables and pictures and links... Let one
item not to show correctly and it will all go down.
I don't work for Kobo, if one might ask.
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Old 11-08-2010, 09:56 AM   #82
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Originally Posted by KoboNo View Post
So again, yes it is cute to have a small Canadian company competing against the giants (i.e., Amazon), however to say that "Kobo has delivered everything it promised" is not keen observation on your part. You either have a connection with Kobo in saying that, or are not a smart buyer and observer of the products you buy.
Really, comments on others' posts should restrict themselves to the content. Personal attacks, such as this aren't welcome here.
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Old 11-08-2010, 10:12 AM   #83
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Originally Posted by SensualPoet View Post
Little Kobo! The Blue Button eReader That Could!

So ... I believe Kobo has delivered everything it promised when I signed up and I am very encouraged that the future is bright for me as an ongoing customer.
I have to agree with this.
The whole newspaper thing is a non issue for me so the fact that we are still waiting for it makes no difference to my Kobo experience. Maybe when (if?) it eventually gets here I will be so thrilled that I will wonder how I survived without it but until all this recent fuss I had forgotten it was ever supposed to happen.
I bought my Kobo so I could read books - and that's what I do
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Old 11-08-2010, 10:41 AM   #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KoboNo View Post
As an additional note, speaking with an industry professional, it came to us that Kobo would help their failures and winning back their original customers by offering them something as a 'sorry'. No, not a silly few-buck coupon for a book. How about something more substantial? You messed up. You supposedly respect your original customers. Show us.

We'll all be in the market for a new device in the next 12 to 24 months. Now's the time to keep your original customers, Kobo, not later.

I second the opinion on personal attacks. If you cant restrain yourself from name calling and finger pointing go away.
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Old 11-08-2010, 11:52 AM   #85
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I have to agree with this.
The whole newspaper thing is a non issue for me so the fact that we are still waiting for it makes no difference to my Kobo experience. Maybe when (if?) it eventually gets here I will be so thrilled that I will wonder how I survived without it but until all this recent fuss I had forgotten it was ever supposed to happen.
I bought my Kobo so I could read books - and that's what I do
Same for me. About the only pain point I have outstanding now is the time to boot up, which is only ever an issue because of the automatic shutdown. But I can live with that.

As to newspapers on the first gen devices...

I've been scratching my head on that one since they started talking about it. I mean, how do you get the content onto the device each day? I've got to sideload it before I leave in the morning? No thanks.

Possibly, bluetooth syncing through a smartphone would do the trick, but that's only going to work for someone with a compatible phone.
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Old 11-08-2010, 12:06 PM   #86
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Originally Posted by HamsterRage View Post
As to newspapers on the first gen devices...

I've been scratching my head on that one since they started talking about it. I mean, how do you get the content onto the device each day? I've got to sideload it before I leave in the morning? No thanks.
I travel with my netbook for work, and bring my kobo with me. Sideloading my paper in the morning when I am on the road would not pose a problem.
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Old 11-08-2010, 12:26 PM   #87
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I've been scratching my head on that one since they started talking about it. I mean, how do you get the content onto the device each day? I've got to sideload it before I leave in the morning? No thanks.
I suppose it would be possible via desktop app. It might check the new
issue, check the format and convert if needed. Then user has to connect
the reader and sync. Or brand new application that would do the very
task. Just as multiple xml apps do with the source. Eons ago I used my
code to manage rss feeds and show them as html page to the browser.
Later I found the same app, named rawdog, with the same features. If
someone has a time to search, to find already existing code and show it
to developer team. If it could "fetch" the source regularly, "find" news,
or awk them, or look for tags and do properly, then to put the content
in the file and format it to be nice... As a plugin or alike. Things like xmlpp
are open source and free to use. That would go to "hack" sticky, as kindle
has it. As always in life, who needs it has to do the dirty job.
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Old 11-08-2010, 01:35 PM   #88
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I travel with my netbook for work, and bring my kobo with me. Sideloading my paper in the morning when I am on the road would not pose a problem.
Personally, I'd just read it on the netbook then. Colour. Hyperlinks.

But that's just me.
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Old 11-08-2010, 02:26 PM   #89
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Personally, I'd just read it on the netbook then. Colour. Hyperlinks.

But that's just me.
Might be simple when sitting at home. However, when you are on the move (say, riding in a taxi) using a netbook is less convenient. The advantage of having the newspaper on the ereader is its ease of use. Just pick it up, turn it on, and read. I used to have a similar setup with my Palm pda (remember those?), using a program called avant-go. It would download the daily feed from the Globe and Mail, CBC and BBC into the pda and I could readily access the information - without having to carry around a paper.

My 2 cents...
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Old 11-08-2010, 03:15 PM   #90
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I am one of the first owners of the Kobo e-reader. I pre-ordered on April 6 after speaking to Kobo staff and confirming the bluetooth function would be expanded by Summer 2010, and the BT function would continue to be expanded thereafter. Newspaper delivery would also be available by the summer. Based on those assurances, I preordered. We all know what happened with BT and newspapers on the original Kobo unit. I have always been happy with the Kobo bookstore and the reading experience (no issues with fonts, margins, page turns, battery, etc) but found the unkept BT promise unacceptable - a deal breaker.

So, in several e-mails to customer care, I communicated this to The Kobo Team. Last week, we reached a very satisfactory agreement. I am happy, I will be staying with Kobo, I am glad I did not give up and go away disgruntled and accept I deserved that for ordering a new product. I am much happier staying with Kobo than going to Kindle.
If you are dissatisfied (and not with tiny product details like margin size, for example), then you are well within your consumer protection rights, to seek resolution with Kobo. I believe they do care very much about customer retention and if you feel you were misled, then write to them with your desired solution. I'm glad I did, I am one now one very happy Kobo customer - I have the perfect e-reader and shop at the perfect bookstore. Thank you to The Kobo Team!
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