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Old 05-18-2020, 09:18 PM   #1
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ereader for geeky user

I'm getting tired of reading on my Android phone, particularly at night and I want an eInk screen that's not backlit. I prefer the Android readers I use most to what I see of the readers on Kindles and Kobo devices, though I have minimal experience with the latter. I want customizability and flexible line spacing options at the very minimum. I mostly read epub books that are DRM free, so I don't want or need the Amazon stuff, or even that of the other vendors. Being able to read my books that are out of anybody's ecosystem is vital, though I'd use Overdrive some.

I'd ideally like something like the Onyx Poke2 or the Nova2 because they'd allow me to install Android readers. The 7.8" screen on the Nova2 appeals to me. But I have no need for the Wacom features and it's expensive because of them. It could be that the image quality suffers because of that, too. The Poke2 isn't available until at least the end of June and its 6" screen is slightly smaller than that of my phone. I can live with that, but would prefer a little bigger. Though being able to have it in my pocket would be a plus. A 7" version of the Poke2 might be ideal if it existed.

Then there are the Kobo Clara HD and Libra H2O. I'd lose the Android option with those, but it seems that I could still read my independent epub books on them. And they're cheaper, especially the Clara HD. I'd like the option of being able to return them if I don't like them. But if I buy through Rakuten, that seems like it'll cost me more than it would be worth. I don't know what Walmart's policy is (I'm in the US). Generally, I avoid Walmart. More than generally. But I'd consider an exception in this case if their return policy is favorable.

Image quality and software configurability are important to me. I don't want sluggish performance with searches and page turning. Any recommendations on this? Other products I'm not aware of?
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Old 05-19-2020, 12:18 AM   #2
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Likebook Mars - 7.8", Android 6, 8 Core CPU, 1.5 GHz, 2/16 GB.
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Old 05-19-2020, 01:05 AM   #3
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Thanks for the reply. Have you used the Mars at all? What's the likelihood of them updating the OS to a later version of Android? Will the current ereaders all run on Android 6?
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Old 05-19-2020, 01:21 AM   #4
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moon reader should - I have it running in amazon's equivalent of A6 on fire tablet
i am pretty sure that all readers in google store specify the minimum Android versions needed to run, on the store pages
the issue is more at the other end. some still don't work in A10
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Old 05-19-2020, 05:30 AM   #5
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Thanks for the reply. Have you used the Mars at all?
I had it for about a year, then I sold it because I was asked to do so.
And got me Likebook Alita and Likebook Ares.
The Likebook Mars is the only 7.8 inch Android device without Wacom
Quote:
What's the likelihood of them updating the OS to a later version of Android? Will the current ereaders all run on Android 6?
The new Boox devices run on Android 9 and an update to Android 8 has been promised for the Likebook devices.
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Old 05-19-2020, 11:44 AM   #6
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Are there negatives with Android ereaders compared to something like the Kobo ones? I'm thinking along the lines of poor visuals or performance due to the different technologies in ereader hardware and display that the Play Store apps aren't written and designed for.

I wouldn't be looking to do that much browser activity on the ereader. I'd probably read longer articles on websites only. I'd still use my phone for plenty of things. So I'd only use Moon+ Reader Pro, a couple of other epub readers on occasion, a little with a browser, probably Wallabag, which is a Pocket-like service.
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Old 05-19-2020, 11:47 AM   #7
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"Are there negatives with Android ereaders compared to something like the Kobo ones? "
Shorter battery life.
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Old 05-30-2020, 10:55 PM   #8
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"Are there negatives with Android ereaders compared to something like the Kobo ones? "
Shorter battery life.
That has not been my experience.
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Old 05-30-2020, 11:51 PM   #9
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That has not been my experience.
My experience differs. Compared to my Kobo ereaders with the same screen sizes, the two Android ereaders I've used have had noticeably shorter run times. This may vary with manufacturer but overall Android seems to require more battery power than embedded Linux. This matches up with NXP's documentation for their SOCs with a builtin EPDC where Linux requires less power than Android. In deep sleep, the power consumption is much the same but in normal use, Linux took less power.
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Old 05-31-2020, 01:39 AM   #10
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My experience differs. Compared to my Kobo ereaders with the same screen sizes, the two Android ereaders I've used have had noticeably shorter run times. This may vary with manufacturer but overall Android seems to require more battery power than embedded Linux. This matches up with NXP's documentation for their SOCs with a builtin EPDC where Linux requires less power than Android. In deep sleep, the power consumption is much the same but in normal use, Linux took less power.
I have 2 Kindle Paperwhite, which gives me about 30 hours of reading time.
If I only read with my original Android devices, it is about as long. When I surf or use my Boox Poke Pro as a navigation system, I get around 25 hours.

In general, the Android devices have much more powerful hardware, but also much stronger batteries.

I have two devices with the same hardware:
- Kobo Glo HD (Linux)
- Tolino Shine 2 HD (Android 4.4.2)
their batteries last approximately the same length with approximately the same use.
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Old 05-31-2020, 02:25 AM   #11
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OP here. I ultimately ordered a Kobo Clara HD, which was on sale for $90 at Walmart, a place I don't normally shop. But people seem to like the device. It meets most of my needs other than being able to install Android apps that I may not end up needing. It's configurable and modifiable, which I want. The longer battery life is a plus. I decided that 6" might be a better size than the larger one I'd been considering at first and the price was so good that there was little to lose. It's been years since I've had an eInk reader, so it's a good, low risk way to feel my way back in.

Only one problem. It never showed up. Walmart didn't get the devices by the stated date and now there's no estimated arrival date at all. So when I might see it is anyone's guess. Days, weeks, who knows? This is in the US. Canada seems to have endless quantities of them at various different vendors and for lower prices than they're sold for in the US by Rakuten. But that doesn't help me.

The US Rakuten Kobo site is frustrating. I can get one from them, but it's more expensive than the Walmart sale price I ordered at, I have no idea when it would arrive, and it appears to be close to impossible to have direct contact with a human being to find anything out. There's no phone number and the online chat is strictly with a bot. Plus, returns are more difficult and costly. Walmart is now selling it via a third party vendor, but it's more expensive and there are other problems that make it not worth my while.

If this looks like a longer term thing than I'll want to wait out, either I'll hope the Poke 2 shows up by the end of June as Onyx suggests or get something else. But more likely, I'll have to wait unless another product catches my fancy.
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Old 05-31-2020, 04:23 AM   #12
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My experience differs. Compared to my Kobo ereaders with the same screen sizes, the two Android ereaders I've used have had noticeably shorter run times. This may vary with manufacturer but overall Android seems to require more battery power than embedded Linux. This matches up with NXP's documentation for their SOCs with a builtin EPDC where Linux requires less power than Android. In deep sleep, the power consumption is much the same but in normal use, Linux took less power.
The only Android based Readers I have experience with has been the Sony Reader PRS-T1 and the nook STR and both had a perfectly good time between charges. I cannot say fr newer Android Readers with newer versions of Android.
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Old 05-31-2020, 10:31 AM   #13
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That has not been my experience.
I switch off ereaders weekly. I read several hours a day. I have found that my Kobo will last at least 4 days, but my Android has to be recharged every day as does my Ipad. What Android do you have that lasts more than a day?
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Old 05-31-2020, 10:55 AM   #14
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I switch off ereaders weekly. I read several hours a day. I have found that my Kobo will last at least 4 days, but my Android has to be recharged every day as does my Ipad. What Android do you have that lasts more than a day?
Each Android eInk Device - Boox, Likebook, Tolino.
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Old 05-31-2020, 11:17 AM   #15
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Each Android eInk Device - Boox, Likebook, Tolino.
Thanks, that answers it - yours are eInk, mine (except for the Kobo) are not. The reason I'm not going for another eInk is that the page background is not really white like my non eInk readers. I find that my Kobo tires my eyes due to the greyish background - I know that is not normal for most folks, but it is for me. I keep hoping someone will put out an eInk device with a really white background.
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