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Old 06-14-2009, 07:36 PM   #1
MickeyC
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Consumer Reports Says Kindle Beats Sony

The July issue of Consumer Reports rates the Kindle 2 above the Sony 700. Main issues are wireless on the Kindle plus less resolution on the 700. CR makes a few mistakes. For example: they state that you turn the page on the Kindle by pushing the navigation bar but have to swipe the screen on the 700. They missed that the 700 also has page turn buttons.

Here are the details:


E-readers: Kindle beats Sony
Last reviewed: July 2009
Kindle

Sony Reader PRS-700BC
Turn by turn
You change pages on the Kindle, top, by pressing a navigation bar. On the Sony, above, you swipe a finger across its touch screen.

This article is the archived version of a report that appeared in July 2009 Consumer Reports magazine.

If you're shopping for an e-book reader, as in portable electronic text display, two brands dominate: Sony and Amazon. We compared the latest models from each, the Amazon Kindle 2, $359, and the Sony Reader PRS-700BC, $349.
Convenience

The Sony requires you to install software on your PC (it's not Mac compatible) and connect it using a USB cord to download new content. The Kindle is wireless, connecting automatically and at no extra cost to your Amazon.com account via Sprint's 3G network. It took an hour or more of work to set up the Sony. But we were reading within 5 minutes of opening the Kindle box.
Screen

Both have 6-inch, black-and-white screens that use so-called e-ink, a technology that's very frugal with power (both should run for days on a charge). Reading in a range of light conditions is generally fine. Type and images are rendered more crisply and accurately on the Kindle, though, and pages of type appear a little more quickly as they turn.
Navigation

The Sony has a slight advantage here. Its touch screen, a first for an e-book reader, made navigating content even easier than with the Kindle, which makes you use a five-way joystick to select what you want to read or buy. The touch screen is about as sensitive as those on most cell phones we've tested; that is, you have to press down firmly as you swipe your finger across the screen to advance to the next page. (You can also change pages by using two awkwardly tiny tabs at the bottom of the screen.) You turn pages on the Kindle by clicking navigation strips on each side of the screen.
Portability

Each weighs about 10 ounces. The Kindle is a bit thinner than the Reader and some smart phones.
Availability of titles

That is the only toss-up. The Kindle Store has 270,000 titles and counting, far more than Sony's E Book Store, and best sellers cost $9.99, a few dollars less than Sony's usual price. Amazon also offers a free first chapter or introduction for every title sold; Sony offers only a handful of such freebies at a time.

But Sony's software allows easy access to 500,000 free public-domain titles, in very old editions, digitized by the Google Book project.
Versatility

The Sony is solely for reading books, but the Kindle can also read them to you in mechanical but understandable male or female voices. It also offers (at extra cost) feeds from select blogs and wireless newspaper and magazine subscriptions. There's also a basic Web browser under an "Experimental" tab.
Bottom line

The Kindle is easier to use and more versatile, thanks to its wireless coverage. The Kindle DX, with a larger, 9.7-inch screen, appears to be identical in resolution of type and images. It will cost $489 when it's released this summer. The Sony is worth considering for its touch screen and night-light. If you can forgo those, the Sony Reader PRS-505, $300, performs comparably and also gives you access to Google books. [/B]
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Old 06-14-2009, 07:51 PM   #2
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Yeah I read a similar article in wired that someone emailed me.

They can say all they want, but I don't have to agree. I love my sony.
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Old 06-14-2009, 08:11 PM   #3
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The CR article is so full of errors it is not funny.
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Old 06-14-2009, 08:18 PM   #4
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Yeah the Wired review I read was full of errors too. They "conveniently" failed to mention ALL the formats that the Sony can read. Thats a pretty key factor, IMO. Unfortunately, I don't have the link to that article as I already deleted the email, but maybe I'll go digging through my trash can and try to find it, and if I do I will post the link.
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Old 06-14-2009, 08:19 PM   #5
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I think the errors in that report were also discussed in this thread.
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Old 06-15-2009, 05:34 AM   #6
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There's a huge difference in the MRSP. The MRSP of the Kindle is the actual price of the Kindle whereas I can't recall seeing anywhere in the United States where the actual price of the Sony was $349. Usually it's $299 or even $279. In that regard the Sony gets a huge boost over the Kindle.
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Old 06-15-2009, 05:42 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canuck_in_Japan View Post
There's a huge difference in the MRSP. The MRSP of the Kindle is the actual price of the Kindle whereas I can't recall seeing anywhere in the United States where the actual price of the Sony was $349. Usually it's $299 or even $279. In that regard the Sony gets a huge boost over the Kindle.
These articles usually only look at the listed price. Sometimes (if they do things correctly), they'll mention you can get it cheaper.
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Old 06-15-2009, 03:07 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canuck_in_Japan View Post
There's a huge difference in the MRSP. The MRSP of the Kindle is the actual price of the Kindle whereas I can't recall seeing anywhere in the United States where the actual price of the Sony was $349. Usually it's $299 or even $279. In that regard the Sony gets a huge boost over the Kindle.
For a 700? Never seen one that cheap.
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Old 06-15-2009, 03:51 PM   #9
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Personally I think the Kindle 2 does beat the Sony 700 overall. However I don't think it beats the 505 the same way. It has more features, but the 505's superior screen to the 700 and lower price than either puts it on a much better footing against the Kindle 2.
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Old 06-15-2009, 04:01 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by JSWolf View Post
The CR article is so full of errors it is not funny.
That's been my experience with a lot of CR articles. I don't really put much stock in them.
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Old 06-15-2009, 04:06 PM   #11
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The Sony has a slight advantage here. Its touch screen, a first for an e-book reader, made navigating content even easier than with the Kindle...
Oh, puh-leezzz!

I guess my nine year-old Rocket eBook with its touch screen doesn't count as an ebook reader, it seems.

-JPB
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Old 06-15-2009, 04:50 PM   #12
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The CR article is so full of errors it is not funny.
Yep. They left out too much about both devices. It sounds like someone played with them for a few minutes and wrote the review. They wanted to say which one is the best but it should be about which device is best for the person buying it. If there was a single best reader, we'd all have it. I'd rather see a real list of features so people could make a good choice.
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Old 06-15-2009, 06:02 PM   #13
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For a 700? Never seen one that cheap.
Ooops! Sorry-I thought it said the review was comparing the Kindle 2 and the Sony 505. My mistake.
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Old 06-15-2009, 08:22 PM   #14
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Consumer Reports not too good

Quote:
Originally Posted by Canuck_in_Japan View Post
Ooops! Sorry-I thought it said the review was comparing the Kindle 2 and the Sony 505. My mistake.
Dear ALL:

I only know that on cars Consumer Reports is unfair, opnionated, and loves only foreign cars. They slant their stories to suit their desire. I remember how they HATED the Oldsmobile Aurora Classic. They ripped it to shreads. Horribly unreliable!

So, I bought a 1994 Oldsmobile Aurora Classic and put 200,000 miles on it with not a trace of any problem at all. Best car I ever owned.

Then I bought a GMC Canyon. CR rated it horrible and had not one nice thing to say about it. Rated "worse than average in every category". 85,000 miles and the little Canyon has been a gem. Rides great, plenty of torgue, great mileage, and NOT ONE PROBLEM!! Just LOVE every trip in it.

So, at least in my mind, CR is the problem and does slanted analysis to suit their goals.
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Old 06-17-2009, 01:51 PM   #15
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Dear ALL:

I only know that on cars Consumer Reports is unfair, opnionated, and loves only foreign cars. They slant their stories to suit their desire. I remember how they HATED the Oldsmobile Aurora Classic. They ripped it to shreads. Horribly unreliable!

So, I bought a 1994 Oldsmobile Aurora Classic and put 200,000 miles on it with not a trace of any problem at all. Best car I ever owned.

Then I bought a GMC Canyon. CR rated it horrible and had not one nice thing to say about it. Rated "worse than average in every category". 85,000 miles and the little Canyon has been a gem. Rides great, plenty of torgue, great mileage, and NOT ONE PROBLEM!! Just LOVE every trip in it.

So, at least in my mind, CR is the problem and does slanted analysis to suit their goals.
The reliability ratings that CR has for cars come from the surveys that CR readers turn in. The fact that you got a good sample of one card is just luck.

We had a Pontiac Bonneville many years ago that went through 3 engines and two transmissions in the first couple of years... under warranty, but still a lot of downtime. After that it was no more GM cars for us. And after you've been in a foreign car you learn to like the ride and handling better.
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