Sunday, January 9, 2011

Sony E-Reader Follow Up

So I had originally intended to do a follow-up to my Sony Pocket E-Reader review a month after owning it (you know, once the honeymoon period was over). After a month of use though, I thought I’d wait another couple of months because surely something would have come up in that time. Now almost four months after use, it seems about right to fill you all in on how it’s going now.

One word – great! Seriously, I kept thinking something would happen that I could tell you about (like the battery life was shoddy or certain formats sucked) but I have had no such problems. I use the e-reader for an average of 5 hours a week (ish – I usually alternate between reading a physical book and the e-reader for my 2 hour commute each day).

Battery life: Awesome!! Surprisingly so – I had expected the battery to drain quickly will all the page-turns, but I find that I really only charge my e-reader once a week (I’ll usually leave it until the weekend). Sometimes I’ll plug it in midweek to update my library, but once a week charging seems to be plenty to get through the week without the e-reader getting sluggish.

Functionality: For what I’m using it for, it’s very easy to use. I think if you plan on utilising more of the extra features, like highlighting and note-taking you might find the stylus a bit fiddly, but I don’t really use it enough to really comment (and if you do plan on using it regularly, I’m sure you’d get better with it).

Reading and Formats: So far I’ve tried EPUB documents, PDF and Word documents. Each format has worked fine for me. I do find occasionally I will need to increase the magnification on some texts (but I have pretty dodgy eye-sight anyway, so it might just be me).
(I borrowed the Luxe ebook from my local library)

Reader Software (Library): Look it’s pretty basic (like an early version of iTunes) but again, works fine for me (though I'd be interested to see how tidy it stayed if you had more than 50+ ebooks - I tend to get rid of titles once I've read them). The only other downside I can think of for some users is the lack of wireless internet connection for instant downloads, so if you want this function - maybe try a Kindle or the new Kobo?

Books: I have to admit I am still yet to purchase any ebooks. It’s terrible I know, but I’m a bit hesitant to try as it seems like Australian retailers haven’t got a uniform process for purchasing, pricing and downloads.
Eh, we’ll see. I have been reading free out of print titles from Project Gutenberg, and what I’ve found to be even better is that my library service has a system called Overdrive in which they allow you to borrow ebooks and audio books. Whilst the range is still fairly limited, it’s slowly growing (and I’m assuming the more who start using it will encourage the library to allocate more resources there).
So for anyone with an e-reader, this is definitely something to look at – if your local library doesn’t offer it, you may be able to get membership to a library that does.

Miscellaneous: Yes, I went and got a case/cover for it because I am extremely clumsy and am very good at dropping expensive, shiny things onto hard surfaces. This case was purchased from Borders, though you can purchase them elsewhere.


Leanna (Daisy Chain Book Reviews) said...

I'm really enjoying my Sony e-reader too! The battery life is amazing! I've gotten most of my books from Netgalley so far, but I've also bought one or two.

I failed to get a cover for mine when I bought it (oops!) but I'm getting one next time I go shopping!

brave chickens said...

My library has Overdrive too! :) I tried using it for audiobooks, but the files weren't the type to be put onto iPods. Which is kinda sad. So... I gave up.

btw, this might sound really dumb, but can you put audiobooks onto your ebook reader? And if you do know, which ebook readers allow you to put audiobooks on them? Thanks :D

Nic @ Irresistible Reads said...

I still trying to decide if I need an ebook reader or if I am just going to end spending more money on books since they will only be click away. I think eventually I will give in and get one :)

Miss Friday said...

Leanna - glad you are enjoying yours! I must say, I'm using mine a lot more than I thought I would :)

BC - hmmm, that's annoying (re:audio books). When I worked in data entry, I'd borrow audio books on CD from my library and then put them on my ipod, which worked well. Maybe try that? In regard to audiobooks on an e-reader - I'd say you would be able to on the models which have audio functions (like you would an mp3 player). Most Kindles and Nooks have mp3 player capacities, the i-river story and I think one of the Sony's. This table might be useful:

Nic - I haven't spent any money on books since buying it! All from the library :) They are useful and it's great for me on my long commute, instead of carrying 2 or 3 paperbacks

Mad Scientist said...

Love ereading! I'm happy you enjoy it.. and what a pretty cover.

Ah, I have a nook but I will check for this one.

Today I posted a review of a grand Steampunkery Book!  Please do check it out, I highly recommend Vampire Empire: The Greyfriar if you want Steampunkery and a mix of many genres.  A new favorite... indeed a huggable book!

Mad Scientist
Steampunkery & Book Reviews
Forbidden Steam
Where the Mad Scientist can be found behind the bed chamber doors!

Lauren said...

This is interesting. I chose a Kindle instead of a Sony ereader because after comparing the range of titles available to me in the UK, the Kindle had easier access to the kind of books I wanted. However, I love the sound of this Overdrive service. I haven't heard of anything like that where I live, and my guess would be it's not suitable for Kindle users anyway (?) but it sounds like a fantastic development.

The wireless purchasing facility on Kindle is lethal. This morning, I'd bought a book before even changing out of my PJs. You kind of need a lot of self control with it.

Anonymous said...

How do you listen to books on an ereader, I have tried even with Overdrive at my library to no avail.

Miss Friday said...

Hi Anonymous,
I'm not 100% sure how you do it as the Sony pocket e-reader doesn't have that function (the Sony 500 can though I believe). I've managed to get Overdrive files onto my ipod though and was able to listen to them on that (not quite the same thing I know)

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