My favourite gadget

Living out in the sticks as I do, new gadgets take a while to get to us. I have been observing the Kindle trend for quite some time, but just found it way out of my price range. I also didn’t like the idea of being tied into proprietary software. It irks me when manufacturers try to dictate what format I should use (sorry Amazon and Sony). Some time last year I came across the Cool-er eReader, Interead’s answer to the Kindle.

It was significantly cheaper at the time and capable of multiple ebook formats. What clinched the deal for me was that it came in my very favourite colour – bright green. I know, I’m a complete fashion slave.
I finally got my grubby little paws on one of these over Xmas and although it’s a solid little gadget, it does have a few items which I think could have been better.

My number 1 gripe is the next page button. It’s very stiff and my thumb has had to develop some extra muscles to keep up with my voracious reading. The second niggly item is that the firmware is a little bit shaky and after the first 2 months of use I had to do a firmware upgrade, since my little reader had a severe start up malfunction.

These things aside, I love that I can buy books in most of the ebook formats available. This allows me to shop around for the best priced ebook. The only problem I’ve encountered is with secure Mobipocket books. The Cool-er does not register as a device on the Mobipocket programme, so sending secure docs to it is impossible. It does however, cope fine with the secure PDF format.

Since I now have a year’s worth of books on my eReader and cannot possibly live without it, I have decided that my husband needs one too. I don’t want to saddle him with the very stiff next button, so thought that there may be something else out there that may meet my requirements. After reading rather a lot of reviews on the Crave gadget blog, I found a review for the Astak EZreader. It can cope with most ebook formats, doesn’t limit you to a proprietary format and comes with a handy little cover to protect it. All in all it seems like a good all round reader and I’m aching to get one shipped over as soon as possible!

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