The Kobo Aura H20

I am an avid reader. Or at least I claim to be one.
In any case, after the hiatus of college, where my reading dropped to worrying levels¹, I have been reading more and more. The train commute of ~30 minutes each way to and from work helps of course 🙂

So these were the reasons why last Christmas I was in the hunt for a new e-reader, in order to replace my very old Sony e-reader, which I received from my father as a gift when I started college, in 2009 (!). It is hard to remember the exact model, but it had no touchscreen nor backlit screen (PRS-300BC maybe?)

But enough nostalgia! I’m here to talk about my decision of buying the Kobo Aura H20, instead of an Amazon Kindle.


Some of the nice things I like about this device, which I consider are greater than the Amazon family of products:

  • It is water resistant!
    Not going to see me reading in the bathtub with a glass of red wine, but it adds a level of sturdiness to the device. Want to take it to the beach without worrying? Gotcha 😉
  • The screen is huge
    Specifically 6.8″ backlit. It is very comfortable to read, and very crispy and convenient to read at night. This might be personal, but I like this larger screen and that the menus allow for adjustment of letter size, line spacing, etc.
  • It has a Sudoku game built in!
    Not 100% sure if Kindles allow games, but I found it a nice touch for them to give you this installed. Might come in handy while waiting at airports.

And also some things I like, that both device families have:

  • Reading stats (yay!)
    This might be my geekiness coming out, but I love to be able to have my reading stats, and Kobo does well in this regard.
    Might work towards porting this to visualize it with a Python/Perl script. Would be nice if it could sync automagically my Goodreads bookshelves. Maybe a future post digging into these?
  • Battery and space
    This is of course the standard nowadays. And I like it. Just recently I went on a 2 week holiday through Paris and the East Coast of the USA, and never had to charge once. Just plain amazing.

Lastly, the biggest drawback that makes the Kobo a bit handicapped wrt the Kindle family:

  • The Kobo library:
    I mean it is not bad. It has many titles. But in this arena, Amazon is king. Period. And also, it is a pain in the arse to get a book from the Amazon store into your Kobo (you will have to fiddle with DRM etc. Calibre + some plugins might come in handy to achieve that).

¹ This seemed to be the normal behavior among my college peers. It is hard to concentrate after a long day of studying, and it is way easier to watch a TV series or listen to some music…

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