Tips to Comparison Shop for a New Kobo Aura H20 or the Kindle Paperwhite

Now, with the availability of a newly upgraded e-reader, the Kobo Aura H20 (a new 2nd generation Aura H20), it may be a good time for you to see how it might compare in a match-up with the ever-popular Kindle Paperwhite. Many fans of e-books are familiar with Kindle e-readers, and know that the Kindle Paperwhite is definitely one of the best e-readers on the market. But especially in the United States, Kobo e-readers are not quite as well known or popular. That’s understandable, since Kobo has always focused it marketing efforts on more of a global and international scale, instead of targeting the USA, which is Amazon and Kindle’s main turf. Amazon also dominates because it invented the first mass-marketed e-reader. But Kobo is a rather young company, not launched until 2009. Ever since then, however, Kobo’s e-books and e-readers have been competing directly with Amazon and its big line of Kindle products…and gaining market share.

Reading Comfort

The Kindle Paperwhite is widely regarded as the best screen for reading, thanks to its elegantly soft lighting, consistent illumination, and lack of glare. But if you compare the Paperwhite to the Kobo in terms of that visual reader experience in bright sunlight, it’s virtually a tie. Kobo doesn’t just make a dustproof, waterproof e-reader, in other words, but it makes one that’s bright sunshine- proof too as far as reading comfort.

Sometimes when you’re outside that may be more important that the waterproofing. After all, you may use your e-reader all summer and, if you’re careful, never get it wet. But you’ll spend many hours reading e-books on super sunny days, and if the screen handles direct sunlight exceptionally well, that’s going to be a real value-adding feature.

Advanced, User-Friendly Technology

The Kobo touchscreen reads essentially like printed paper, which never glares back at you, even when you use the e-ink powered e-reader in direct sunlight. Fourteen file formats are supported, you can read e-books from your public library. Choose from 11 different fonts, and 24 different font sizes…compared to 8 font sizes on a Kindle.

While you are reading a book, you can use the Kobo graph in the menu to see how many minutes are left in the chapter you are on, whereas with Kindle most books will only give you an estimate of time left to finish the whole book. Plus you can read in English, French, German, Spanish, Dutch, Italian, Brazilian, Portuguese, and Japanese.

Other Features

Kobo Aura H20 can be put underwater, to a depth of two meters (more than six feet) of water, for up to an hour, and the manufacturer says it should still operate just fine.  The screen size of the Aura H20 is a little bigger….6.8 inches compared to the 6-inch Paperwhite, but both weigh almost the same. A Paperwhite has slightly more pixels per inch, but for most readers the high-definition resolution of these competing e-readers is virtually indistinguishable. Both are backlit, Wi-Fi capability, and boast similar battery life.

Kobo Aura seems to win out in terms of which of these two great devices perform better in bright, glaring sunlight, although the Paperwhite also wins rave reviews for how well it performs in bright sunlight. A cool feature on the Kobo Aura is that if you want to adjust the light setting, all you have to do is slide your fingers up or down the touch screen. You don’t have to go to the setting menu. Meanwhile Kindle offers one of the largest selections of e-books in the world, and it the Paperwhite provides lots of easy ways to synch your e-books between devices and download all sorts of reading material to your e-reader.

The Price Tag and Bottom Line

Most people are budget-minded, and it is important to note that other than the waterproofing feature, the big difference between these two e-readers is price. You can buy a Kindle Paperwhite for about $119, whereas you’ll need to shell out around $179 for the new Kobo Aura H20. Those who are around water when they read may be willing to pay a premium price for serious waterproofing. Others will be content with the Kindle, and can always invest in a protective cover to use around water.

The bottom line is that both of these e-readers are pretty fantastic. If this kind of side-by-side comparison still doesn’t sell you on one or the other, the best way make a final determination is to handle one in person. Everyone has their own unique preferences and needs when it comes to e-readers. But there is no substitute for actually reading with one and getting a total experience of the pros and cons of each.

A Selection of Great E-Books for Autumn Reading

Autumn began this month, and as the air gets cool and crisp it’s a great season to curl up indoors and enjoy a classic novel. Many writers derive their inspiration from this transitional and colorful season. As the leaves change, the skies grow more ominous, and farmers prepare to bring in their crops and store them for the cold months ahead, the Muses also appear to inspire writers. Here are some excellent selections, all of which are available right here at, to help you start your e-book collection of timeless titles that are especially fun to read in the fall.

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, penned by Washington Irving, is one of America’s greatest fiction classics, and a perennial favorite of readers in the autumn months. It’s also a popular download at this time of year. The story takes readers back to the early days of the Dutch colonists who, in the 1700s, settled what is now the state of New York. You’ll meet the strange, tall, and scarecrow-like Ichabod Crane. But beware. You may be put under the spell of wizards and haunted by the headless horseman…who attends dances and harvest festivals in an attempt to marry the lovely Katrina. After encountering the headless horseman Ichabod’s adventures take a wild and mysterious turn…and so will your reading adventure.

Winter, Autumn, Summer, Spring

Poetry lovers will enjoy this collection of seasonal poems of the author who goes by the poetic name of Cleo Patra. This e-book is her 2nd collection of poems, and it takes the reader on rather dark and autumnal journey through ravaging emotions that eventually rise like a phoenix from the ashes of despair and loneliness. For those who are in the mood to go inside and hide as the flowers of summer fade into smoky skies, imminent frost, and looming winter, the autumn poems in this anthology will actually bring literary pleasure and comfort. Read it by the fire, under the light of the full moon, or just while commuting back and forth to work on the subway or bus.


Macbeth is a tragic play written by William Shakespeare and first performed in public around the year 1606. The enduring classic reveals in dramatic fashion the dark side of politics and the ambition for unbridled power. Unlike many of the great plays by Shakespeare that are set in England, Macbeth take the reader to ancient Scotland. That hilly, verdant countryside becomes the backdrop for a story of war, prophecy, strategic intrigue and political assassination, witchcraft, madness, and suicide. For those interested in a short summary of this classic play by Shakespeare, you can read a handy 9-page e-book summary of MacBeth compiled by Abhishek.

Jane Eyre

Charlotte Bronte’s classic Jane Eyre is now available in e-book format. Young Jane became an orphan, sent to live with her aunt. Then she was subjected to all sorts of ill treatment and cruel discipline at school. But she somehow managed to maintain her hope and dignity, eventually growing into a successful woman during the Victorian era. Her problems and challenges persist, however, when she falls in love and then has to face obstacles that try to impede the romantic relationship as she searches for greater meaning in life and a more free and independent role as a woman. Readers of all ages will find the story both inspiring and emotionally moving, making it a great read as you shift from sunny summer into windy autumn and the days grow shorter.

Listen to Audio Books this Autumn

The Study in Scarlet story is when Dr. Watson, the sidekick of Sherlock Holmes, first met the famous genius detective and they shared a flat at 221B Baker Street. The Study in Scarlet is now available as a three and a half hour audio book (and is free to download if you are a VIP member of, too. You can also download an audio book version of another unique Sherlock Holmes mystery story anthology, the Sherlock Holmes Memoirs. This collection includes some exciting tales and ends with the fight between Sherlock Holmes and Moriaty. Other classic titles in audio format available at include several of Edgar Allan Poe’s stories like Monsieur Valdemar, Sphinx, and Black Cat . Kids, who tend to lighten our hearts and lives when we are in a melancholy or darkening mood, will enjoy the audio book The Scarecrow and the Tin Man, which offers a new take on the Wizard of Oz classic. Youngsters will get a special glimpse at the unique relationship between the timid scarecrow and his friend made of tin.