COMMENTARY | I owned an original Barnes and Noble Nook Color for about a year before my boyfriend got me a Google Nexus 7. It was better in pretty much every way, including as an e-reader, even if it was a completely new tablet from a company better known for its web search than for e-books.
He was always more into the Kobo line of e-readers, though. And after looking at their newest model,the Kobo Arc, not only am I sure I would have asked for one if the Nexus 7 hadn’t been out, I almost wish I’d gotten it instead.
Here’s why the Kobo Arc beats out every e-reader tablet out there — especially the Kindle Fire.
There’s a 64 GB Model
More storage space means more books. The folks at Android Central had trouble finding a 64 GB Kobo Arc, but it has more space than any other 7-inch tablet out there except the iPad Mini. And at around $300 for the 64 GB version, it costs a lot less than even the smaller iPad does. Sadly, there isn’t a 3G version, but I’m given to understand you can buy separate adapters for that.
Of course, it isn’t just books that you’re going to put on a color e-reader tablet. Those things are good for games as well, plus apps, music, and movies. And when it comes to all those, the Kobo Arc beats out the Kindle Fire, because …
It has Google Play included
Google Play is Google’s equivalent of iTunes and the App Store. It’s got hundreds of thousands of games and apps on it, plus book and movies and all kinds of stuff. And the Kindle Fire doesn’t.
“But the Kindle doesn’t need that,” you say, “because it has Amazon’s Appstore.” Well, guess what: So does the Kobo Arc. Since it’s basically a normal Android tablet underneath its Tapestries UI, you should be able to install the Amazon app on it, and the Kindle reader app is on Google Play. Because of this, it makes a perfect upgrade. You can even read Nook books on the Kobo Arc thanks to the Nook app.
So in a nutshell, with the exception of stuff from Apple’s iBooks store you can basically …
Read All The Books
… just like you could on a Nexus or other Android tablet. Except that the Kobo Arc was designed with reading in mind, and its Tapestries UI is specially designed for organizing your book collection (and recommending new titles that you might like).
Is that worth, say, not having a Tegra 3 processor for THD games, or the very latest version of Android the way the Nexus 7 does? Or not being able to play Amazon Instant Video, like the Kindle Fire? That’s up to you … and whether or not you can even find the Kobo Arc for sale. Whatever you end up reading on, though, have fun with it!