Amazon Kindles and Kobo tablets are some of the best readers you can buy and yet no company has a single choice with built-in speakers. In fact, the smaller players in the ebook reader market play by different rules and are already offering readers who boast of speakers. The latest Pocketbook Era.
Presented to us by the Ukrainian-born but Swiss company PocketBook, the Era is a 7-inch eRider that brings competition to things like the Kindle Oasis and the Kobo Libra 2.
The pocketbook is known for devices that have a very specific look – the rounded bottom corners show a metallic color strip and the control buttons, which are usually located at the bottom of the screen. The Era, however, has its page-turn buttons on the edge of its wide side bezel – there is also a power button – which looks like it has its corners cut off rather than rounded.
The PocketBook Era adopts the latest E Ink Carta 1200 screen technology, which keeps the resolution at 300ppi, improving response time by 20% and page contrast by 15%. But unlike other readers, the Era has a glass-finished screen that flush with the bezels, without using a layer of plastic on the top. And, most importantly, the screen’s brightness is controlled by both brightness and temperature, providing a comfortable reading experience in any situation.
Spoiled for choice
In addition to the Pocketbook Era’s built-in speakers for audiobook support, there is also Bluetooth connectivity, so you can go the traditional way of attaching wireless headphones to a tablet. Additionally, Pocketbook says that if you have Bluetooth support you can pair it with car audio systems and even portable speakers if you prefer.
The PocketBook Era supports 29 different file formats, including 19 ebooks, six audio files and four graphic formats. It’s a lot more than a Kindle or Kobo eRider. Additionally, there are 22 preloaded dictionaries, which can be useful if you are learning a new language.
The Pocketbook Era promises to come with anti-scratch protection – an important addition when topped with a glass layer on the screen – and its waterproofing is rated IPX8, meaning it can withstand up to 60 minutes in two meters of water. .
It has a 1,700mAh battery that gives you four weeks worth of reading before topping, with two colors to choose from – each with its own storage capacity.
The PocketBook Era is available in Stardust Silver with a maximum capacity of 16GB and in Sunset Copper with 64GB of storage. They will set you back $ 199 (approximately £ 159 / AU $ 275) and $ 249 (approximately £ 199 / AU $ 345), respectively. PocketBook devices have limited availability worldwide, but you can import them from US retailers such as Amazon and Newegg.