The Kobo eReader is now available in Canada and coming to a Borders near you next. At $149.99 US, it’s $110 less than the Amazon Kindle and BN’s nook and $50 less than the Pocket Edition of the Sony Reader. The lower price should appeal to readers looking for an affordable device. Kobo also has a Bluetooth connection, so users with certain smartphones can update their selections on the go. There are also mobile apps for the iPhone and iPod Touch as well as Palm Pre, Blackberry and Android.
Kobo uses the same e-ink display as the other readers and appears to be about the same size. It has 1 GB of memory, and unlike the Kindle 2, it has a slot for an SD reader card, expanding storage capabilities even further. It comes with 100 free e-books (all classics) so is ideal for a high school or college student. In fact, I think any e-reader makes a great graduation present, though the Kobo may arrive too late for this year. It’s due in Borders stores around Father’s Day.
Kobo provides an e-reader comparison page on their website. The file formats it supports are ePub, unsecured PDF and Adobe DRM.
I’ve been reading e-books for over ten years now, so it’s exciting to me to see so many different readers now available. Prices of e-ink readers have come down substantially since Dec. 2007 when I bought my first Kindle. This is getting really interesting.
What do you think? Will Kobo kill the Kindle? Or will it perhaps force Amazon and BN to lower their prices again? I suspect the latter, at least for the short term.