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Old 12-07-2018, 12:47 AM   #1
ChrisHistorian76
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Icarus quietly goes out of business

It appears Icarus has quietly gone out of business.

https://goodereader.com/blog/electro...as-disappeared
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Old 12-07-2018, 03:40 AM   #2
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Well, pooh.

It's not the first time one of my vendors has gone on me, but it's still annoying. At least I didn't 'invest' too much in my Icarus (and it's out of guarantee), it's just used to side load my large collection, given I don't want a Kindle and my Kobo started to not to want to talk to my Mac when I had an SD card installed.

So I guess I'll have to start looking out for my next device.
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Old 12-08-2018, 01:48 PM   #3
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Well, pooh.

It's not the first time one of my vendors has gone on me, but it's still annoying. At least I didn't 'invest' too much in my Icarus (and it's out of guarantee), it's just used to side load my large collection, given I don't want a Kindle and my Kobo started to not to want to talk to my Mac when I had an SD card installed.

So I guess I'll have to start looking out for my next device.
Maybe an other koko ?
Else, you might want to look at bookeen (should be availible in the UK), or pocketbook.
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Old 12-08-2018, 02:28 PM   #4
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My main device criteria are vendor-neutral, and Mac-compatible. Page-turn buttons are also good because I have dry skin and current touch-screens don’t always work well for me (I got on better with older IR screens). Also, I need decent on-board storage and an expansion slot. I prefer e-Ink to LCD because of battery life.

Anyway, I’m not in a hurry - the Icarus is still working fine. Mind you, combining the reader with a note-taking function might be good although I suspect that will adversely impact on functionality.

I moved away from Kobo because I started having problems when I was using an SD-card, and more recent models don’t have a slot. I would have gone for the 32 Gb device, but couldn’t get hold of it here. Plus, I feel Kobo seem to be going down the Apple route and trying to lock people into their ecosystem.

Last edited by maddz; 12-08-2018 at 02:32 PM.
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Old 12-10-2018, 10:38 AM   #5
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My main device criteria are vendor-neutral...
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I feel Kobo seem to be going down the Apple route and trying to lock people into their ecosystem.
If you can use Calibre and the Alf plug ins, isn't any e-ink device vendor neutral?
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Old 12-10-2018, 11:37 AM   #6
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I sideload all my books on my eink kindle even though I buy books from amazon. I don’t even have the kindle registered so I don’t get ads and the dictionary still works.
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Old 12-10-2018, 12:36 PM   #7
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Plus, I feel Kobo seem to be going down the Apple route and trying to lock people into their ecosystem.
How so? I've seen no signs of Kobo discontinuing their download option, and that option lets you put the books anywhere that supports Adobe DRM. A number of books are even DRM free, which is nice. (Tor, I salute you.)

With a little help from Alf and that crew, even the DRM isn't an issue.

So what makes you think Kobo is moving towards an Amazon/Apple like walled garden?
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Old 12-11-2018, 01:32 AM   #8
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I find it somewhat laughable that anyone would think Kobo was locking people down.

1) they support epub which is what most vendors deal in
2) they allow you to download epub directly from their site
3) their devices are so open to user modification it's become (with thanks to other users here) as simple as editing a document in notepad++ or textedit and then dropping a file into the right directory on your Kobo.
4) They haven't changed their DRM in a long time

Compare that with Amazon, who clings to their own format, though supports epub I am not sure how well that support is actually implemented. Constantly works against users jailbreaking their devices. And continues to invest in new DRM schemes.


One of these companies wants to keep you in the walled garden. The other wants you to enjoy reading.
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Old 12-11-2018, 06:21 AM   #9
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Compare that with Amazon, who clings to their own format, though supports epub I am not sure how well that support is actually implemented. Constantly works against users jailbreaking their devices. And continues to invest in new DRM schemes.

One of these companies wants to keep you in the walled garden. The other wants you to enjoy reading.
I don't see that much difference in Amazon's modified mobi format (KFX, AZW3) and Kobo's modified ePub format (KePub). Both are based on an open format, both have modified the open formats for their own devices and neither will work on other devices until the the DRM protection is removed. I guess most (but not all) Kobo books come in ePub as well KePub, but that still requires ADE to load on to a non-Kobo reader. So long as Calibre and Apprentice Alf's deDRM plugins are operational, there really is no "walled garden" for either Kindles or Kobos.
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Old 12-11-2018, 07:48 AM   #10
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I don't see that much difference in Amazon's modified mobi format (KFX, AZW3) and Kobo's modified ePub format (KePub). Both are based on an open format, both have modified the open formats for their own devices and neither will work on other devices until the the DRM protection is removed. I guess most (but not all) Kobo books come in ePub as well KePub, but that still requires ADE to load on to a non-Kobo reader. So long as Calibre and Apprentice Alf's deDRM plugins are operational, there really is no "walled garden" for either Kindles or Kobos.
If you are calling the use of Adobe DRM a walled garden, then it's a pretty big garden. There are a lot of devices and reading apps that support it. And of course, other stores sell books using Adobe DRM and they can be read on Kobo devices. That includes Overdrive books.

If Kobo is a walled garden, then it has a pretty big gate in the wall that they have left wide open.
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Old 12-11-2018, 02:15 PM   #11
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If you are calling the use of Adobe DRM a walled garden, then it's a pretty big garden. There are a lot of devices and reading apps that support it. And of course, other stores sell books using Adobe DRM and they can be read on Kobo devices. That includes Overdrive books.

If Kobo is a walled garden, then it has a pretty big gate in the wall that they have left wide open.
1) While it is true that there are many more ePub book sellers than mobi book sellers, there are other places (besides Amazon) where you can buy or download mobi books that will work directly on your Kindle.

2) The default format for both the Kindle and Kobo is not the standard mobi or ePub formats. Both Kindles and Kobos have fewer features when not using AZW3 (KFX) or KePub formats. (I know patches on the Kobo can work around this, but I'm talking about the default configuration.) And not all books on Kobo's site are available in ePub format (I know this because the Kobo market will sometimes balk at selling books for Sony readers).

3) Calibre and Apprentice Alf's deDRM plugins can negate these restrictions (both on Kindles and Kobos).

4) While the ADE "walled garden" is huge it's still a walled garden. The Amazon "walled garden" is also huge. (And, in the U.S., borrowing with Overdrive is actually easier on the Kindle than on most Kobo devices.)

At any rate, I think the Kindle "walled garden" argument is misleading as Amazon's "send to Kindle" allows you to automatically convert ePub books for reading on your Kindle device (this is if you don't want to use Calibre with deDRM plugins). Both Amazon and Kobo default to a proprietary format if downloading directly to your Kindle or Kobo device. Both companies make it easier to use their proprietary formats.
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Old 12-11-2018, 02:44 PM   #12
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(And, in the U.S., borrowing with Overdrive is actually easier on the Kindle than on most Kobo devices.)
Is that still true since Kobo's added direct Overdrive integration to all their devices?

I don't own a Kindle and my Aura's old enough it didn't get the update. Plus I don't borrow library books. So this is just an honest question, not an argument.
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Old 12-11-2018, 05:00 PM   #13
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Is that still true since Kobo's added direct Overdrive integration to all their devices?
All their current devices, but I don't have a current Kobo device. And, I'm guessing, a lot of people don't. Meanwhile any Kindle works with Overdrive (where Kindle Overdrive borrowing is available, i.e., in the U.S.).

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I don't own a Kindle and my Aura's old enough it didn't get the update. Plus I don't borrow library books. So this is just an honest question, not an argument.
There's advantages and disadvantages to all readers. I like and use Kobos and Kindles (and Sonys and Tolinos and ...). I just think the Kindle "walled garden" argument is kind of weak.
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Old 12-11-2018, 05:17 PM   #14
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All their current devices, but I don't have a current Kobo device. And, I'm guessing, a lot of people don't. Meanwhile any Kindle works with Overdrive (where Kindle Overdrive borrowing is available, i.e., in the U.S.).
I dunno. In the U.S. where Kobos were pretty much unavailable until Walmart started offering them just a few short months ago, I would bet that most Kobo devices are the Aura 2 or later. Remember, the sample here isn't a reflection of reality.

Is there any technical reason that older Kobos can't have overdrive integration, or is it just a business decision? I do think finally making it an option on all currently sold models was a good idea.

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There's advantages and disadvantages to all readers. I like and use Kobos and Kindles (and Sonys and Tolinos and ...). I just think the Kindle "walled garden" argument is kind of weak.
That I agree with you, so long as Calibre and Alf remain effective. They allow the e-reader market to function in what to me is the ideal way. Which to purchase isn't tied to a built-in store, but to which device I feel is best for hardware or software reasons.
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Old 12-11-2018, 05:23 PM   #15
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I just think the Kindle "walled garden" argument is kind of weak.
The wall itself may be weak, but the Amazon infrastructure is more restrictive than Kobo's. The very first book I got for my Kobo was an epub from Smashwords, which of course opened fine. To load it on my Paperwhite would have required an extra step. A trivially easy extra step, but still an extra step - over the wall.
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