Sat. Jun 22nd, 2024

I love my iPad. It’s effortlessly good at almost everything and allows me to indulge in all my whims in one place. I can also read books on my tablet, and while this seems to be a pretty common thing to do, I decided to outsource this function to my eReader and have never looked back.

eReaders Are Convenient in a Way Tablets Aren’t

Tablets are fantastic, and that may actually be their downfall when it comes to reading. They’re just too valuable—and fragile. I want a device that I can chuck into the bottom of a backpack, whip out anywhere, and not worry about it getting broken. That just isn’t the case for most tablets. eReaders are small, light, and usually made of hardier materials than your traditional tablet.

Many eReader screens are made of plastic, which makes them more durable, and allows me to tow my Kobo around in my day-to-day life without a care in the world. Yes, we all love the glossy glass look, but we also know that sinking feeling when you hear the crunch and see the newly formed cracks. eReaders just aren’t as fragile, and with so many of them being waterproof, that relaxing bath reading is now truly stress-free. The real magic of the eReader is its practicality and the way it allows you to take your library with you anywhere.

When It Comes to Battery Life, We’re Talking Weeks Not Hours

The Kobo Clara Colour in sleep mode
Jerome Thomas / How-To Geek

There is a specific kind of frustration you feel when your device decides to die right in the middle of a particularly good chapter, but that is avoidable with an eReader. The battery life of my Kobo is really impressive compared to my iPad, which loves to spring low battery warnings on me at inconvenient times.

Obviously, tablets are more complex and use more processing power than eReaders, so it is to be expected, but it does feel like a novelty only to have to charge my Kobo every few months. Amazon boasts that its basic Kindle can last up to six weeks on a single charge, and this makes it great for holidays and long journeys. Being tethered to the charger while reading isn’t the greatest experience and one that just isn’t necessary when eReaders charge fast and discharge slowly.

eReaders Provide a Distraction-Free Zone

We all know the temptation of push notifications. One minute you’re engrossed in a book, the next you’re halfway down a YouTube rabbit hole. It’s hard to stay focused on one thing when your tablet does so many, but the simplicity of the eReader is that reading is pretty much all it lets you do. There is nothing to distract you. The functionality of an eReader centers around reading books and finding your next book to read. No notifications, no tabs, just the words on the page. This focused space for reading allows you to immerse yourself in a book fully and put the distractions to one side.

eReaders Are Easier on the Eyes

Kindle eReader showing the Kindle book store.
Justin Duino / How-To Geek

Staring at screens for prolonged periods of time can cause eye strain, but realistically, that’s not going to stop us from doing it, so I guess we’d better pick our poison. When it comes to reading, eReaders are easier on the eyes than tablets. eReaders use e-ink technology, which is designed to look like paper. It doesn’t need a bright backlight and is easy to read even in direct sunlight, so you don’t need to squint. Many eReaders also have blue light filters and matte screens. Compared to the LCD screens common in tablets, e-ink minimizes the eye strain that comes along with staring at an ebook for hours on end.

You Don’t Need to Break the Bank to Buy an eReader

There are many reasons why eReaders are a great choice, but often, the thing holding us back from buying one is the cost. However, you might be surprised at just how affordable eReaders can be. The basic Kindle is only $99 new, and if you keep your eye on the deals, you can often get them for even less than that. Second-hand eReaders are pretty widely available, too, with Rakuten selling their refurbished Kobo Nia for $79.99. You can get a top-of-the-range eReader for prices similar to tablets, but if keeping costs down is a priority, you don’t need to break the bank to get a great eReader.

Maybe It’s Time to Double Up

A page from a manga displayed on both a Kobo eReader and an Apple iPad
Sydney Louw Butler / Yen On / How-To Geek

My eReader has absolutely no chance of replacing my tablet with its sprawling capability, but it also has to be said that my iPad just can’t compare in this one niche. The tablet really is a great multipurpose tool and is perfectly fine for the casual reader, but if you’re a bookworm, I can’t recommend an eReader enough. It cuts out any distractions that could take away from the reading experience, reduces eye strain, and can be carried around with you in a stress-free way that tablets can’t. The choice is yours, but I choose both.

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By John P.

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