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Is it worth getting an ebook reader?

As I live on a narrowboat and like reading I have been toying with the idea of getting a ebook reader. the options seem to be a Sony, Kindle or iPad. Which one would work best on a boat in terms of power use and lighting? We have 240v electric and a webbook with a dongle. Have other boaters found ebook readers worthwhile or just another gadget to take up space?

Asked by: Mrs Marilyn Biles  | 2.04pm, Monday 11 October

WW says:

First of all, it's worth noting that there's a big difference between the Kindle and Sony Reader on one hand, and the iPad on the other.
The iPad is a fully functional touchscreen computer that includes an ebook reader. The Kindle and Reader are dedicated ebook readers with a little, but very limited, extra functionality. The iPad is correspondingly more expensive, but can do more. As you say you already have a notebook computer, the iPad is probably not worth the extra expense.
All three have better power consumption than a notebook. Since the Kindle and Reader are simpler devices, they use less power than the iPad. That said, the iPad will happily charge from either 230V or 12V overnight.
The Kindle and Reader have greyscale screens without any backlighting. The iPad has a backlit colour screen, which again is more power-hungry. The Kindle and Reader's screens are more "natural" and most people find them more comfortable in normal lighting conditions, but in a darker cabin, you may miss the iPad's backlight. Several companies sell reading lights for the Kindle which are worth considering.

Richard Fairhurst  | 3.56PM, Tuesday 12 October

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