Kobo Libra Coloration and Clara Coloration Are Beautiful Coloration E-Readers That Are Held Again by a Lockdown

The issue with most e-readers is that they’re not likely designed to learn books. They’re designed to promote you books. Amazon, which has the biggest market share within the U.S., is especially infamous for this, however Barnes & Noble is responsible of the identical. Kobo is probably the least offensive on this regard — it has Pocket and Overdrive integration! However typically, after I’ve discovered myself utterly enamored with Kobo’s beautiful new coloration e-readers, I’ve all of a sudden been instructed: This factor is right here to promote me books.

Which is a disgrace as a result of Kobo is new. Coloration of Libra And Clara Coloration are the closest we have gotten to an ideal e-reader shortly. The $219.99 Libra Coloration and $149.99 Clara Coloration are extremely light-weight however sturdy, making them snug and never flimsy. Each characteristic Kaleido 3 shows, which means e book covers seem in true coloration. Each flip pages and navigate via shops a lot sooner than the $249.99 A web page of a e book (larger and slower brother Palm) – spectacular, contemplating the truth that Kaleido 3 The show is just a little slower than the extra conventional monochrome E Ink show discovered within the Web page.

Coloration! Not… significantly brilliant coloration.
Photograph by Amelia Holowaty Krales/The Verge

I really just like the dearer Libra as a result of I desire asymmetrical e-readers with devoted buttons over ones that look extra like conventional tablets. That it additionally has stylus help for taking notes is a plus. Nonetheless, both is a captivating and gratifying e-reader to make use of, and over the previous couple of months I’ve repeatedly discovered myself reaching for the Libra over the Boox — which has been my major e-reader till now. I similar to the texture of studying on it higher. Certain, the Boox offers me all of the studying apps accessible (it’s an E Ink Android pill), however the Libra doesn’t have any of the bizarre little quirks which can be typical of E Ink Android.


The Libra Coloration is one among Kobo’s latest e-readers, and one of many first to characteristic a coloration display screen. With help for Overdrive and Pocket, it offers readers a considerably bigger expertise than e-readers from larger manufacturers like Amazon.

Each Kobo e-readers additionally help coloration textual content highlighting, and their touchscreens really feel a lot sooner and extra responsive than the Boox Web page. Nonetheless, these spotlight colours aren’t significantly vibrant. The Kaleido 3 show present in each offers you coloration, however it’s a coloration akin to what you’d see in a newspaper overlooked within the solar for a couple of days. Plus, that coloration comes at the price of each making black-and-white studying rather less crisp. It’s nonetheless infinitely higher than earlier coloration E Ink applied sciences, which frequently gave the whole show a inexperienced tint.

My actual downside with these units is just not the colour shows, however the lockup.

Kobo e-readers are extra for getting books than studying them. They’re tied to the Kobo bookstore, which is powered by Rakuten, a Japanese retailer that’s typically known as “the Amazon of Japan” or “the Barnes & Noble of Japan” when individuals need to rapidly describe the corporate. Rakuten is excellent at promoting books, and Kobo’s built-in bookstore is analogous. It doesn’t have fairly the identical library as Amazon; Amazon has extra self-published titles and extra area of interest content material from boutique publishers. Nonetheless, Kobo’s bookstore has a good vary. If it’s a e book that’s even remotely widespread, you’ll discover it on Kobo.

The menu is handy if you wish to purchase a e book, however inconvenient in the event you simply need to browse the books at your native library.
Photograph by Amelia Holowaty Krales/The Verge

In contrast to different non-Android e-readers, Kobo e-readers even have a extra conventional library in-built by way of Overdrive. When you have a library card from a library that works with Overdrive, you’ll be able to borrow e-books. Sadly, that is the place you begin to see Kobo’s bookselling enterprise collide with its e-book enterprise. To borrow books, you both have to make use of your cellphone to search out them in an app like Libby, or use the Uncover tab, then choose the Overdrive tab and hope that you will discover the e book you need. Or it’s important to seek for the e book within the Kobo retailer, and once you discover the e book, it’s important to faucet the Extra Choices button subsequent to the a lot bigger Purchase Now and Wishlist buttons, after which really faucet the Borrow From Overdrive button to see if the e book might be borrowed out of your library. It’s horrible, and after I requested a usually very good good friend to attempt to borrow the e book, she couldn’t even determine tips on how to do it.

You can also’t have a couple of lively library card on Kobo at a time. As an alternative, once you end a e book and need to learn one other one which’s tied to a unique library card, it’s important to log off and log in with the opposite card. I needed to swap between the New York Public Library and Jersey Metropolis Public Library playing cards on a number of events, and it was very annoying. I don’t have to try this after I use the Libby app on my Web page or iPad.

You run into the identical downside utilizing Kobo’s built-in “experimental” net browser. I can navigate web sites simply tremendous, and if I need to attempt studying a e book on-line, I can theoretically try this. No apps wanted. The browser is simply painfully under-engineered. It might be good if I may scroll or flip pages utilizing the Libra’s built-in buttons, like I can with EinkBro Browser on Android-based e-books.

The Libra Coloration (left) is very nice to carry, however the Clara Coloration (proper) is cheaper.
Photograph by Amelia Holowaty Krales/The Verge

Getting ebooks from different shops onto your system can also be a ache. You must plug your e book into your pc and drag and drop information (although Calibre, an e book administration app, makes this a lot simpler). However this downside isn’t distinctive to Kobo. Amazon and Barnes & Noble additionally insist that you simply obtain books from third-party sources. However after years of the Boox (and iPad) ecosystem, it appears odd that every one these techniques insist that you simply be so tightly tied to their bookstores. It’s a level of tie-in that appears absurd, and with the Kobo ecosystem, it appears much more absurd as a result of in so many different methods, it looks like the corporate is genuinely making an attempt to get ebooks proper.

The Kobo Libra Coloration and Koko Clara Coloration are quick and almost excellent for staying out of the best way once you simply need to learn a e book. Their coloration shows aren’t as crisp because the iPad Mini’s LED show — and even the monochrome E Ink show — however the coloration provides a welcome taste to the expertise that black and white doesn’t. The truth that they even provide issues like an internet browser and help for Overdrive and Pocket may be very welcome in comparison with what Amazon does. However tethering, man. Tethering stands out as the norm within the e-reader world, however it shouldn’t be.

Supply hyperlink

Leave a Comment