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Old 03-09-2010, 11:31 PM   #1
phenomshel
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ePub on BlackBerry?

Is there an application for reading ePubs on a BlackBerry? I know Mobipocket is now supposed to handle that, but when I tried running an epub through Mobipocket Desktop (which then converts the ePub to .mobi), all the apostrophes and quotation marks are now a string of symbols. This is the same issue I'm continuing to have with Calibre when converting epub to anything else, the apostrophes and quotation marks are either missing, or converted to something else entirely, making the files essentially unreadable. I did submit a support ticket to Kovid, but got back that it worked fine for them, so I have no idea why it won't work for me.
That's the reason I bought the Asus in the first place, is so I wouldn't have to mess with converting. But, occasionally I'd like to read something that isn't a .mobi file or belongs to B&N on my BlackBerry, and most of my purchases are ePubs. I also tried putting an unDRM'd ePub in the B&N ebooks folder but the software won't pick it up. Anyone got any ideas?
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Old 03-10-2010, 12:04 AM   #2
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I buy ePubs from Sony and deDRM them. Then I use Calibre to convert them to a better ePub format for my PRS300 and also to Mobi for my T91MT. I haven't noticed any weird conversions of apostrophes and quotation marks, but I will look more closely as I'm currently reading a converted Mobi book in MobiPocket Reader on the T91MT that started its life as a Sony ePub.

BTW: When I convert from ePub to Mobi I use Calibre's Page Setup screen to set the Output Profile to Sony Reader 300 and the Input Profile to Default Input Profile. This has worked well for MobiPocket Reader for the PC on my T91MT. There are many formats to choose from, so another combination might yield different results, but this combination seems to work for me.

I also have a BB Curve 8900, but the screen is so small I never tried using MobiPocket Reader on it, but I might now that I can convert my ePubs to Mobi. I have used DataViz to read Word Doc files and it is readable but requires a lot of scrolling.
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Old 03-10-2010, 08:34 AM   #3
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The mangled quotes sounds like a UTF-8 issue. MobiPocket is supposed to support UTF-8 but Windows 1252 encoding is much more common for native MOBI ebooks.

An alternative that might be worth trying is eReader. Software for BlackBerry is available from FictionWise and B&N. I don't know if Calibre's ePub -> eReader would help with quotes, but eReader does well on a small screen.
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Old 03-10-2010, 12:14 PM   #4
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I just tried a book on my BB I converted from a Sony ePub to Mobi. It looks fine. Here are a few suggestions to try:
  • Be sure you have the latest version of Calibre
  • Use Calibre to convert ePub to ePub (this might clean up any bad formatting)
  • Use Calibre to convert the just-converted ePub to Mobi

I personally am not impressed with MobiPocket for BB, but to be fair, reading eBooks on a BB with a tiny 2.5 inch screen is not what the BB was designed for. The BB's forte is in SMS, MMS, and email. However, it is an acceptable option for when you are in a waiting room and want to read while you wait. But as shown in the attached photo, you have to scroll often.
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Old 03-10-2010, 02:08 PM   #5
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I've already read several books on the Curve, so I'm familiar with the small screen and the scrolling issues. It isn't intended to be my main reader, just a stopgap for breaks and waiting rooms, as you say, when I don't have the Asus with me. I think Wallcraft hit it with the encoding - but I can't figure out how to fix that issue. I changed it in the Calibre preferences and it did absolutely nothing.
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Old 03-10-2010, 02:22 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phenomshel View Post
I've already read several books on the Curve, so I'm familiar with the small screen and the scrolling issues. It isn't intended to be my main reader, just a stopgap for breaks and waiting rooms, as you say, when I don't have the Asus with me. I think Wallcraft hit it with the encoding - but I can't figure out how to fix that issue. I changed it in the Calibre preferences and it did absolutely nothing.
Sorry if my post offended you. I was merely stating facts for EVERYONE who views this thread, and that includes a lot of folks who never post to it but might have questions.

I've converted several ePubs to Mobi without the issues you encountered, so as far as Calibre, it definitely works and you just need to figure out the proper settings for your situation. And the photo was meant to illustrate that quotation marks are rendered correctly. I couldn't find an apostrophe, but I didn't search long.

I'm just trying to help. I will be happy to compare settings if that will help out.

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Old 03-10-2010, 02:46 PM   #7
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Here are my settings:

...
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Old 03-10-2010, 02:56 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jswinden View Post
Sorry if my post offended you. I was merely stating facts for EVERYONE who views this thread, and that includes a lot of folks who never post to it but might have questions.

I've converted several ePubs to Mobi without the issues you encountered, so as far as Calibre, it definitely works and you just need to figure out the proper settings for your situation. And the photo was meant to illustrate that quotation marks are rendered correctly. I couldn't find an apostrophe, but I didn't search long.

I'm just trying to help. I will be happy to compare settings if that will help out.
Oh hon, no offense taken, I'm sorry if my reply sounded that way. That's what I get for posting before caffeine. Thanks very much for the screenshots, I'll check my settings against yours and see if I can track down the problem that way
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Old 03-10-2010, 02:58 PM   #9
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@phenomshel I don't know of any ePUB reader for the BB. I was hoping B&N or Kobos would update their apps to read ePUB on their BB app but that has not happened and I don't think it will in any time soon.

I've not seen this issue most books I buy are in MOBI format and the few ePUB that I have bought and converted to MOBI have not had any issues.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jswinden View Post
...I was merely stating facts for EVERYONE ...
Well I won't go so far as to call them facts, more opinions than facts.

Here's a screen capture of my BB and think the screen size is fine for me. The screen ratio from the BB to the SONY is about 2.5 to 1.

Personally I found Mobipocket to be one of the best reading software out there easy to use yet has a good set of features. Bookmarks, highlight, annotation(WinCE), zoom + pan.
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Old 03-10-2010, 03:29 PM   #10
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Well, part of the reason I was interested in this again, is because I'm looking at getting a Storm 2. More screen, better reading, you know I don't mind the Mobipocket software at all, and if it just converted epubs properly, I'd be deliriously happy with it.
I installed Kobo's app for BB in hopes that it would read unDRM'd epubs, but I can't even find where or if Kobo's app stores them on the phone. I'm guessing with them you read them from their servers, while online? With an unlimited data package that's not a huge deal, but it definitely does prevent you from adding your own material to the app!
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Old 03-10-2010, 06:41 PM   #11
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The screen shot I posted is from a storm 1. So the storm 2 will look pretty much like that. The app I took a picture of was the kindle for BB, not a bad app. I just prefer the mobipocket app because it allwos for complete customization. For some reason amazon has chosen to restrict customization of the UI to a few simple settings
Yes the kobo app only reads their proprietary format/drm. I'm not a fan of their product it downloads a chapter at a time and feels like your reading one huge html file at a time. The bookmarks are stored in one location for all books. The store front is real nice but their book reader is really bad.
at the moment there is no better solution than mobipocket which is kind of sad to say it's been in beta for 1.5 yrs now with no updates and it is still the best reader for blackbery.

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Old 03-11-2010, 02:20 AM   #12
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Well, I completely uninstalled and reinstalled Calibre, redid all the settings, and managed to convert a few ePubs to .mobi without errors (and with apostrophes and quotation marks!). So I guess Mobipocket Reader it will be .
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Old 03-11-2010, 07:05 PM   #13
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Well, I completely uninstalled and reinstalled Calibre, redid all the settings, and managed to convert a few ePubs to .mobi without errors (and with apostrophes and quotation marks!). So I guess Mobipocket Reader it will be .
Great! The storm will be much better screenwise than the Curve.
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Old 03-11-2010, 07:19 PM   #14
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[QUOTE==X=;823941Here's a screen capture of my BB and think the screen size is fine for me.[/QUOTE]

The Storm and Curve both have the same resolution of 360 x 480 pixels (or 480 x 360 pixels for the landscape Curve). This is slightly higher than the iPhone. However, the Storm's screen is 3.25 inches diagonal compared to the Curve's mere 2.44 inches. That makes a lot of difference in reading. I've got an iPod touch and it is a better platform for reading than my Curve simply because of the 3.5 inch screen. The larger screens make a big difference. So comparing the Storm to the Curve is not realistic.
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Old 03-13-2010, 08:37 PM   #15
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Just got the Storm 2. Once I get used to the touchscreen, I think I'll really like it, both for what it's meant to do, and for reading ebooks. I'm transferring stuff now, when I'm done with that I'll install mobipocket.
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