In Which I Give The New Kobo Aura A Try, And Make A Surprising Discovery

As an early ereader convert, I have long been a fierce advocate of my Kindle. Without question, my Kindle (who I fondly named ‘Bernard’) has served me well over the years. I have never, not even once, had a problem with Bernard the Kindle.
But I’m afraid that the arrival of the new Kobo Aura, has made me seriously question my unrelenting fidelity to Bernard the Kindle.
Now, to be fair, Bernard is a Kindle 3 (which I believe is now referred to as ‘Kindle Keyboard’, so this is hardly a comparison of equals. However, I was so utterly blown away by the new Kobo, that I don’t really care.

My initial reasons for purchasing a Kindle over a Kobo were twofold:
First, at the time, Amazon offered waaaaayyyy more titles than Kobo, and since I am a voracious reader of everything, I was really put off at the idea that a title I wanted might not be available if I purchased a Kobo. Second, at the time, the Amazon store, and the Kindle itself, were much more intuitive, and user friendly in terms of navigation.
Having used both the Kobo Aura, and the Kobo bookstore rather prolifically over the last two weeks, I am confident that these are now complete non-issues.

Things that I love about the Kobo Aura:

#1. The size: This little delight fits snugly in my hand, unlike Bernard the Kindle who is rather cumbersome.

#2. The touchscreen: Now I know that the newer Kindles have a touch screen as well, and I’m sure it’s great. But Bernard the Kindle does not, and compared to the Kobo Aura’s touchscreen… well, there’s just no comparison. The Aura wins.

#3. The display: So the display on the Kobo Aura is called a Pearl E Ink Screen, and while I normally roll my eyes at such ostentatious names, I have to concede that the screen is very, uh… pearly. Seriously though, I took this little guy outside, to the worst kind of lighting there is; that dappled light that occurs whilst sitting under a tree being gently blown by the wind, and the screen performed like a champ. In fact, it has this amazing transition from direct sunlight, to partial shade, to full shade. I tried to take a video to illustrate this marvel, and unsurprisingly the nuance was lost in video. It’s even lost a little bit in the picture below, so you’ll just have to take my word for it!

Other awesomeness:
– the battery life is fantastic – two weeks later and still going strong!
– the Kobo bookstore is very visually appealing, and user friendly (much more so than Amazon)

Things that I un-love about the Kobo Aura:

#1. Nothing: Seriously, nothing. If I had to nitpick, I would say that the page turn could be a fraction of a second faster, but really, that’s just being greedy.

So, while I still love Bernard the Kindle, I have to concede that the Kobo Aura is a seriously beautiful little piece of machinery. So much so, that I’m going to go ahead and start using it as my ereader of choice. (I’M SO SORRY BERNARD!)
This was a surprising discovery; I never thought the day would come when I would toss Bernard out for the newest (competing) model, but the Aura is beautiful, and it meets all of my requirements for an ereader (and more)!

To that end, I’m going need a new name for my Kobo Aura. Any suggestions?


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