View Single Post
Old 09-19-2012, 02:01 PM   #1
9littlebees is just really nice9littlebees is just really nice9littlebees is just really nice9littlebees is just really nice9littlebees is just really nice9littlebees is just really nice9littlebees is just really nice9littlebees is just really nice9littlebees is just really nice9littlebees is just really nice9littlebees is just really nice
9littlebees's Avatar
Posts: 65
Karma: 161138
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Bristol, UK
Device: Sony Xperia Arc; Kobo Glo
Question Things to cover in Kobo Glo review?

Hi everyone, I'm new to this forum, due to the fact that I have only just pre-ordered my first eReader, the Kobo Glo. Being a bit of a tech-head and review junkie, I thought I'd post a review of the Glo here on MobileRead after I've had a little play with it.

So basically this thread is to ask you guys for things I should look out for and general questions (probably Kobo specific) I should address in my review, that you wouldn't necessarily get from your standard review sites, though I won't be doing anything that will void the warranty. It's apparently going to be available from the 1st October here in the UK, so I should be getting it sometime the week after next.

Here's the colour-coded outline for my review (updated regularly with new requests):

  • Introduction
  • Unboxing & First Impressions
  • First Steps & Loading Content
  • User Interface & Readability
  • Functionality
  • Kobo Customer Service
  • Bug List, Conclusion & Rating

About Me
  • Current role (engineering project planner), no current or previous affiliation with any eReader manufacturers
  • Previously bookshop branch manager, physical book lover
  • eReader newb (mention Kindle / Kobo / Aldiko apps on Android as only prev experience)
  • Prev experiences with eBooks on LCD screens (PC, Android)
  • Why I haven't gone for a Kindle (family in the US that could provide a Paperwhite, if wanted)
About Review
  • Real-world review, with no bias
  • No previous experience with "proper" eReaders
  • Addressing questions / concerns from MobileRead community (link to thread)
About Kobo Glo
  • Reflection on specs, inc formats, resolution & other features

Unboxing and comments on physical device
  • Packaging & protection of unit
  • General presentation
  • Documentation (manual, warranty, etc)
  • Peripherals & accessories (UK mains plug?)
  • Perceived robustness (compare to my Android - plastic body but glass screen)
  • Quality of home button and ports
  • Perceived durability of screen
  • Comments on LED lights - location, how well-protected, etc
  • Comments on quilted back, comfort of holding it
  • General thought on the physical unit

Preparing for First Use
  • Does the battery have an initial charge?
  • Duration of first recharge - UI elements, LED notification, etc when charging
  • Does it need to be tethered to PC to activate and get to work?
  • Able to access free books, side-load from Calibre, etc without logging into Kobo (i.e. work out of the box)?
Loading Content
  • List of any bundled free books
  • Availability of officially supported epubs & price comparison with Amazon ebooks
  • Navigating Kobo Store from device, and ease of ordering kepubs
  • Comparison of DRM epub vs same book in kepub, when both purchased from Kobo store
  • Ease of getting back to where you were reading after loading/buying new books (try it with kepubs & side-loading to see if different)
  • Adding additional dictionaries

User Interface
  • Firmware number
  • Comments & photos of home screen
  • Ease of navigating the menus and settings
  • Comments on social settings (Reading Life, Facebook integration, etc)
  • Web browser - which is installed and possible to change? How does it work?
  • Browser scrolling - how does Glo scroll on long/wide pages - soft buttons / double touch / shaking?
  • Browser zooming - how does Glo zoom / increase font in browser?
  • Browser comfort - possible to render sites (i.e. forums to only see messages)?
  • Page turn speed
  • Ease of turning pages one-handed
  • Thoughts on screen clarity/quality with light on and off (inc contrast)
  • Light brightness levels, in low-light and total/near darkness, inc uniformity of light distribution
  • Note-taking - can notes be exported? How are they accessed outside the book itself? Do notes sync with kepubs between devices?
  • Highlighting text - anything special, does highlighting of kepubs carry over onto other versions of Kobo (i.e. PC)?
  • Footnotes - how are they displayed? Thoughts / comments
  • Dictionaries - size requeired for each, can they interpret foreign text (try to use example from every supported language - test with Anna Karenina)
  • Provide list of supported dictionaries
  • Which non-Latin alphabets (Cyrillic, Arabic, Japanese, Chinese, etc) are supported, and how are they displayed? Support for font size and weight changes?
  • Similar feature to Paperwhite's "time left to end of chapter"?

  • Using microSD cards to store & access eBooks, and also interact with Calibre (using both generic & branded, plus new and used cards)
  • Purchasing non-standard books and ease of converting & sideloading (inc Amazon, Google, Smashwords, BOB, B&N)
  • Do eReader settings override font, justification, line spacing, margin widths, etc if these are set in an eBook?
  • Functionality with side-loaded eBooks, including epubs, PDFs, CBRs, CBZs, etc
  • Add-in (i.e. non-standard) font handling
  • Functional differences between epubs and kepubs (also, kepubs vs "official" epubs, i.e. purchased from WH Smith)
  • Compatibility with Adobe Digital Editions, including ease of syncing with the Glo, and exporting ebooks, data, etc from ADE to the Glo
  • Thoughts / comments on checking out ePubs from local library service
  • Format handling when reading epubs converted by Calibre
  • In sleep/off mode, are epub book covers properly full screen right away, or do they require editing in Calibre?
  • Investigate issue of device setting itself to standby mode after having been turned "off" by long switch press (not the case with mine as of 3/1/13 when I last switched off on 28/12/12 - 6 days prior).
  • In sleep/off mode, does the last book read show, or is it the book before last, or other?
  • After other elements of review are finished, fully charge battery then test battery life with light left switched on continuously
  • Duration of full recharge, following full discharge as above
  • Can a Glo's library be organised from within Calibre, without issues?
  • Functionality of "shelves" and support for it outside of the device, also do shelves have full functionality with ebooks stored on a microSD
  • Are any features / configurations lost upon restarting the device?
  • How the Glo navigates the Touch's "Home button" areas without a physical button

Kobo Customer Service
  • Email response time & helpulness to general query
  • Email response time & helpulness to bugs
  • Email response time & helpulness to feature suggestion
  • Ease of contacting (& helpulness) by telephone in UK / international head office

List of bugs encountered
  • Does it live up to my expectations as a first-time eReader owner?
  • Will I use this as a replacement to physical books?
  • Thoughts on commerce elements (i.e. local Amnesty bookshop, unable to sell "used" ebooks)
  • Based on the sections of review above, score out of 10, weighted as follows:
  • Robustness, durability, comfort of physical device (20%)
  • Preparing for use and loading content (10%)
  • User interface & Readability (30%)
  • Functionality (30%)
  • Kobo Customer Service (10%)
  • Overall rating

Books to test ([source]: [title]):

Last edited by 9littlebees; 01-03-2013 at 04:54 AM. Reason: Adding points from replies
9littlebees is offline   Reply With Quote