I have wanted an e-ink based e-reader for a while. Reading on my computer is ok. Reading on my phone is doable, but is very annoying. If I don't keep my finger on the screen, it will go blank and then I have to make sure and press the power button to bring the screen back to life before it locks. A tablet would probably be a nice compromise, but I really wanted to try out an e-ink display, and didn't want the potential distractions of a more multi-purpose device. I wanted not only and e-ink display, but also one that ran a linux operating system, and a reader that I could potentially put a different Linux distribution on, or modify myself somehow. When asked what I wanted for Christmas this year by my wonderful girlfriend, I sent her a link to the KOBO Libra H20.
KOBO Libra H20 specification
processor - Freescale i.MX6 SLL 1 GHz
RAM - 512 MB
hard drive - 8GB
display - 7 inch HD 300 PPI E Ink touchscreen with 1680 x 1264 resolution
dimensions - 6.3 by 5.7 by 0.3 inches (HWD) and 6.8 ounces or 159 by 144 by 7.6 mm and 192g
battery - 1200 mAh. Good battery life. Currently I use it infrequently, and have charged it maybe 4 or 5 times of the last year
Connectivity -WiFi 802.11 b/g/n and Micro USB. I have it connected to my home network. Have only used WiFi to update the OS. I use the USB port to transfer books I've downloaded to my computer, and to charge the Kobo.
Calibre ebook management
I knew about Calibre, but had never used it. So far it has been a great e-book manager. Has very nice features for editing meta data and organizing my books. It will also transfer the books to the Libra H20 and update its internal database. One thing I found is KOBO does have its own EPUB format that it uses to optimize display of books. In particular, it fixes an issue where images in standard EPUB format don't scale to the size of the page. Calibre has a plugin system, and a 3rd party plugin is available that will convert a standard EPUB format to KePUB when you transfer the book to the e-reader.
I have been enjoying my KOBO reader. It can feel a little slow at times, especially rendering pdf files where the page is a picture of the text and not made up of electronic characters, and it does render images in standard epub format a bit small at times. Other than these two things, it is very easy to read in all lighting settings, and I enjoy reading using the KOBO.