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Old 02-01-2020, 02:45 PM   #1
Richwood
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Why are Factory Reader Covers So Expensive?

I note that factory Kindle covers cost in the $30 to $65 range. Nook Glowlight Plus cases are about $40. Glowlight 3 cases are much cheaper, so much so I wonder if the model is about to be discontinued. Kobo covers run from $30 to $50. All seem to be too expensive compared to prices available from third party sellers on Amazon and ebay. I have many of the after market Kindle covers as well as some official Kindle covers and can see little quality difference between the various covers even though the majority of the after market covers are under $15.

What justifies the OEM cover prices other than many buyers apparently do not look for and buy the alternatives?
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Old 02-01-2020, 02:49 PM   #2
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I note that factory Kindle covers cost in the $30 to $65 range. Nook Glowlight Plus cases are about $40. Glowlight 3 cases are much cheaper, so much so I wonder if the model is about to be discontinued. Kobo covers run from $30 to $50. All seem to be too expensive compared to prices available from third party sellers on Amazon and ebay. I have many of the after market Kindle covers as well as some official Kindle covers and can see little quality difference between the various covers even though the majority of the after market covers are under $15.

What justifies the OEM cover prices other than many buyers apparently do not look for and buy the alternatives?
Your last question says it all.
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Old 02-01-2020, 04:15 PM   #3
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What justifies the OEM cover prices other than many buyers apparently do not look for and buy the alternatives?
I know when I got my first K3 cover, the OEM cover had an integrated light that didn't need a battery that was a wonderful addition and nothing else like it was out there. It wasn't perfect and certainly not for everyone but I liked it.

When I got my Voyage cover, the integrated origami stand was the feature I was wanting. There weren't many options like that when I got it and the ones that did (at the time) generally had straps to hold the Kindle to the cover so they covered part of the front of the device. That is a deal killer for me.

Right now, if I were to buy a new Kindle (Oasis or PW) I would get an aftermarket cover, and did for my kid's, because there isn't anything special about the OEM ones. That hasn't always been the case. (I did get both of my covers from the Amazon Warehouse so at least slightly reduced prices because they are expensive.)
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Old 02-01-2020, 04:15 PM   #4
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I actually picked up a sleeve for my Kobo Forma in a local craft fair. It's a lightly padded paperback bag and cost me all of £5 and a bit of time with a needle to modify the closure. Perfect to slip the Forma in along with a cheap Poundland stand and the data cable.
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Old 02-01-2020, 07:17 PM   #5
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I have some of the old reader powered lighted covers for the Kindle Keyboard, Kindle NT 4 and 5 as well as the original Kindle Touch and the Sony T3. Bought the covers NOS on Ebay after the readers were no longer current so quite reasonably priced. Those were covers not available from other sources but there is nothing special about current OEM reader covers that I can see.
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Old 02-01-2020, 07:42 PM   #6
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My first gen Paperwhite still lives in its Amazon cover. None since have worn Amazon pricey covers.

I did try the cover with the light that fit the little basic Kindle with the thin page turn buttons, but returned it. It was very slick and hard to hold, and the little pivot out light didn't illuminate the screen well enough for reading in the dark. Used it one day, and returned it. Found an M-Edge cover and a light designed to work with that cover that was perfect. I still have a couple of the M-Edge lights...one is a touch type. We keep them around for print books.

I've bought low cost covers ever since. Most have been just fine, except for a recent Moko cover that had brittle cracking corners after a couple of months.
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Old 02-02-2020, 06:14 AM   #7
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After years my voyage still sits in an aftermarket cover made to look like fake leather. Still going strong. I think I paid about 10 bucks for it from a seller on amazon.
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Old 02-02-2020, 07:28 AM   #8
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I wonder if the actual reason is that the reader is sold at or very close to cost, and the store is trying to make up for the lost profit on a branded cover.

When I was looking at covers for my Forma, Kobo were selling the origami covers at around £40, unbranded sellers at around £15 - £25 for a case.
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Old 02-02-2020, 08:57 AM   #9
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I'm guessing the number one reason is just plain confidence. Confidence that it will fit the device perfectly and perform as expected. Some people don't want to spend the time researching such a basic accessory to make sure it's right for their device. They want a turn-key solution. It's the same reason some people don't look any farther than the high-dollar Otterbox when looking for a cover to protect their phone. They know it will work without having to wade through user reviews to see how (or if) it fits/performs.
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Old 02-03-2020, 02:40 PM   #10
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Another reason is that the Reader was bought when it came out and some don't want to wait for a third party cover.
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Old 02-03-2020, 03:01 PM   #11
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I'm guessing the number one reason is just plain confidence. Confidence that it will fit the device perfectly and perform as expected. Some people don't want to spend the time researching such a basic accessory to make sure it's right for their device. They want a turn-key solution. It's the same reason some people don't look any farther than the high-dollar Otterbox when looking for a cover to protect their phone. They know it will work without having to wade through user reviews to see how (or if) it fits/performs.
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Another reason is that the Reader was bought when it came out and some don't want to wait for a third party cover.
I think these are probably both right. Also, some people value convenience over money and it's easy to buy the cover along with the reader in one transaction.
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Old 02-10-2020, 07:04 AM   #12
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Also, some people value convenience over money and it's easy to buy the cover along with the reader in one transaction.
This. Same goes for screenprotectors (in case of tablets or phones). I recently bought a new android tablet (what can I say, either that 8" isn't large enough anymore or I need glasses ). And they also had screenprotectors and covers selected. I finally ended up buying those two (the tablet itself was a steal) from Amazon.de and paid less for both than I would have paid for the screenprotector alone (cover was about double the price of the screenprotector). Yes, I did have to wait almost a week before I got them (the tablet was buy today, get it tomorrow).
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Old 02-11-2020, 09:28 PM   #13
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Another reason is that the Reader was bought when it came out and some don't want to wait for a third party cover.
I got my Forma a month after it came out, and there were no third-party covers, so I paid the $50 for the horrible Kobo one.

Not quite a year later, still not finding a third-party one I liked, I made my own, modding a sewing pattern for a gen1 Kindle to deal with the weird angle.

It's still a pain to find covers for Formas, especially if you want to read it in portrait mode and want to have it stand up on its own.

Last edited by Ladyrixx; 02-11-2020 at 09:29 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 02-12-2020, 12:28 AM   #14
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It's still a pain to find covers for Formas, especially if you want to read it in portrait mode and want to have it stand up on its own.
I use a cheap phone stand. Works perfectly. It sits in the bag along with the Forma and the data cable and I use it when I need to. The angle is adjustable - it's one of the folding types.
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Old 02-13-2020, 04:27 PM   #15
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I'm guessing the number one reason is just plain confidence. Confidence that it will fit the device perfectly and perform as expected. Some people don't want to spend the time researching such a basic accessory to make sure it's right for their device. They want a turn-key solution. It's the same reason some people don't look any farther than the high-dollar Otterbox when looking for a cover to protect their phone. They know it will work without having to wade through user reviews to see how (or if) it fits/performs.


Confidence and also experience. I've bought the cheaper covers more than once in the past, but in only ONE case over the years did I actually really LIKE one and keep it on the device. The exception was an Omoton cover for my Voyage.

All the rest of the cheaper covers I tried had one or more issues. Sharpish edges is a common one, I read a lot and can't abide anything that is not completely comfortable in my hand. (The Omoton had rounded edges.)

Magnets that clack loudly is another frequent offender and something I hate! I've also encountered covers with too strong magnets, so every time I wanted to read I felt like I was prying the cover open.

I also want good fit, and I've occasionally had cheap covers that, when I realized I didn't like them, were nearly impossible to remove again without worrying over possible damaging the e-ink substrate.

It's all the negative experiences with the cheaper covers that has made me tend to just buy the overpriced official cover. In the long run, it is cheaper, as I don't end up with a pile of covers I don't like and that aren't worth the postage to return and don't sell on eBay.

My Kobo Aura ONE official cover is still going strong, looks nice and has felt great in my hand for years now. In this case, the cheaper cover I initially purchased was not totally terrible, but the official cover just feels SO MUCH BETTER!

Having that wonderful comfy feeling cover is worth the extra money, especially when you keep a device for a number of years. It's a pleasure every time I pick up my reader, which is often!

That said, I bought an official Nook cover back in 2011 and didn't like it. Boxy and not comfortable. I ended up with an even more expensive Oberon leather cover that time!

Anyway, so often I've gone with a cheap cover, always reading many positive reviews and ending up either hating it or just tolerating it, I'm now inclined towards just going with an official cover.

I guess I'm fussy about covers...







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