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Kobo goes large with the 7.8-inch Aura One e-reader

Kobo goes large with the 7.8-inch Aura One e-reader

When Kobo briefed me on a recover of a new e-reader, a association repute explained that a association “[wasn’t] certain if there was a reward cost point” when they expelled a Aura HD behind in 2013. At 6.8 inches, it was incomparable than a long-time attention customary 6 inches, and it had a high-res shade and cost tab to match.

The Canadian association has never been fearful to take risks with a often-boring universe of e-readers, and for that reason alone it is a welcoming presence. Without Kobo pulling a bounds of shade size, build peculiarity and facilities like waterproofing, it’s tough to suppose many creation occurring in a Amazon-dominated space.

With a Aura One, a association is doubling down nonetheless again, with a 7.8-inch arrangement that unequivocally dwarfs a Aura HD and a $230 cost indicate to match. Even with a handful of other acquire appendage features, that’s a flattering lofty cost tab for a clinging e-reader when Amazon’s Kindle Voyage starts during $30 reduction (the Special Offers edition, during least).

But Kobo’s prior attempts to go all in have paid off before, and while a association will expected be a initial to acknowledge that a Aura One isn’t for everyone, it gives a arrange of chairman peaceful to bombard out some-more than $200 for such a device accurately what they’re looking for: a ultimate e-reader.

At a glance

  • 7.8-inch 1872 x 1404 E Ink display
  • 8GB storage, 1Ghz processor


  • Big screen
  • Blue-light night reading adjustments
  • Waterproof


  • Expensive
    • Diminished Battery

When bigger is better 

That’s a thing about e-reader displays: All roads lead to 6 inches. Both Kobo and Amazon have experimented with opposite shade sizes, and both keep entrance to a end that a lift to lapse to a standardised distance is usually too great. After all, it’s vast adequate to replicate a full page and compress adequate to trip into a pants slot when you’re done.

So, naturally, Kobo has left forward and done a largest shade yet. The combined genuine estate means fewer page turns. It’s also a reward for readers who need vast form and people who use their readers for PDFs, that can be a ginormous pain on a smaller shade with all of a pinching and scrolling.

And 7.8 inches, it turns out, is big, yet not unwieldy. Stashing a reader in your slot is unexpected out of a equation. Reading with one palm for sight and transport travelers might or might not still be in a cards, depending on how large your hands are (the jury’s still out on positively presidential candidates). But a Aura One weighs in during 230 grams and facilities a slimmest form of any Kobo nonetheless during 6.9 millimeters, so marathon reading sessions won’t be an issue.

The Cadillac of e-readers

That newer, slimmer form is due, in no tiny part, to a flush display, one constant square of potion that meets adult with a slight mouth on a side. The bezel’s still sizable, containing a tiny dim gray Kobo trademark during a bottom and a hardly manifest light sensor during top. The back of a device is distinguished — during slightest so distant as a backs of e-readers go, with somewhat slim sides that emanate a subtly convex aspect lonesome in a textured soft-touch material.

Up tip is a big, teal energy symbol — a usually earthy symbol on a reader, which, sadly, doesn’t have a earthy page keys recently re-adopted by Amazon for a Kindle Voyage. There’s a microUSB pier during a bottom — it’s substantially too many to ask for USB-C when not even each phone builder has adopted a new customary yet.

Even with that unprotected port, a reader still manages a water- and dust-resistance rating of IPX8, definition it can be submerged in adult to dual meters of H2O for adult to an hour. That offers adult some engaging intensity reading scenarios, yet for many readers it usually means we can incidentally dump it in a cylinder yet violation a thing.

Easy on a eyes

The E Ink arrangement sports an 1872 x 1404 resolution, that works out to 300 ppi — a same as what you’ll find on a Kindle Voyage and a last-gen Glo HD — i.e. about as pointy as reading genuine content on a genuine page. You know all of a e-ink trade-offs by now. In a pro column, it’s crisp, transparent and manifest in sunlight, with a ridiculously low energy consumption. But it’s monochrome and has a many longer modernise rate, that hasn’t seen all that many alleviation in new generations.

Of course, a device’s inability to offer a half-decent web browser knowledge is possibly a pro or a con, depending on who we ask. After all, gripping this a quite readerly knowledge means totally ditching all of a amicable notifications and other distractions — as if we don’t already have all of a info pushed to adequate inclination already.

The genuine differentiator on a shade front is a further of a ComfortLight Pro to a device’s front lighting technology. Like a rest of a hardware world, Kobo’s removing on a nap train, adjusting a screen’s blue light spin so it doesn’t screw adult circadian rhythms before bed. The device can possibly do it automatically regulating a light sensor adjusting over a march of a day, or a user can set a fixed bedtime for a complement to switch over to a distant some-more reddish hue.

This is unequivocally a accessible addition, given a fact that a front lighting was designed to be review in bed.

Speed reading

So, what does a Cadillac of e-readers have underneath a hood? Processor-wise, we get a 1Ghz Solo Lite iMx6 processor, a same speed you’ll find on a Aura HD and Voyage. That’s joined with 512MB of RAM. It all creates for discerning page spin speeds, yet those who haven’t spent many time with a clinging e-reader will find a device’s response time delayed and fussy compared to what we get on a tablet. It’s not unequivocally an astray comparison, yet it does underscore a fact that, screens aside, e-reader hardware hasn’t softened too dramatically over a final integrate of generations.

Storage, on a other hand, isn’t a problem. Kobo went right forward and doubled a Aura HD’s storage to an intensely healthy 8GB. There’s no choice for expandable storage, yet during an estimated 6,000 e-books, by a companies count, you’re substantially OK. And, as usual, we can drag and dump files directly onto a reader from your PC, including EPUB, MOBI, PDF, CBZ and CBR (for comics) and a accumulation of picture types. It’s an honesty that continues to heed Kobo’s inclination from a competition.

The battery life takes a bit of a strike this time out, owing, during slightest in part, to a many incomparable screen. Kobo has halved a battery life estimates from a prior era — yet “up to a month” should still be copiousness of time between charges.

The $229 question

No matter how we cut it, that’s a lot for a clinging e-reader, and Kobo doesn’t have a same advantages as Amazon’s assertive hardware subsidizing (though a fact that it’s now owned by Japanese e-commerce hulk Rakuten positively helps) or a Special Offers-like promotion. That positively creates a device unfailing for an even smaller niche within a already comparatively tiny universe of e-readers.

But Kobo once again gets some points for meditative outward of a e-reader mainstream, and while a Aura One substantially isn’t value a cost of entrance for many readers, a clinging few will find a lot to love, including a large screen, blue-light shifting, a good pattern and a whole lot of storage.

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