I mentioned a couple of days ago that I might be on the lookout for a Kindle. Since then, I’ve realised perhaps that a tablet would be a better choice than a simple ebook reader. For either the same price or a little extra, I could get a tablet and download various ebook apps (and also be free from guilt in class when we inevitably end up discussing evil Amazon and their publishing takeover with an Amazon product in my bag!). I still love buying books and borrowing them from the library, but, as I said earlier this week, it makes my commute a lot heavier. I also think that, as I read a lot of out of copyright books, I could save a small fortune by making myself a free digital library instead of purchasing print copies. I thought it might be interesting to do a little round-up of what I think are the best devices to read on from a strapped for cash student’s point of view.
The Kindle – £59 – £169
Though I do think a tablet is a better choice to take to university with me as I might want to make notes and browse the internet, the Kindle is really second to none if you want your reading experience to be as close to paper as possible. Kindles are probably the best device to use if you want to avoid eye strain, as the display mimics a print book, and so you aren’t staring at a glaringly bright screen. You’re also unlikely to unexpectedly run out of battery as the Kindle lasts so long between charges and reminds you to charge up well in advance. The Kindle Voyage is being released at the start of November. It promises an improved reading experience with ‘reimagined page turns’ and is the thinnest Kindle yet.
The Tesco hudl – £79 – £129
The hudl is an Android tablet exclusive to Tesco. It seems to be marketed as more of a family tablet, but that is perfect for what I would want to use it for. Most students already have a laptop or a computer for work, so a tablet might be more of a luxury extra rather than something to use for working. With a hudl, I can read on my way to university, and watch Netflix on the train home when I’m feeling tired after a 6pm double lecture. TechRadar say it’s similar to a Kindle Fire, and is ‘more than capable’ of filling the role of an ebook reader. Tesco have recently launched the hudl2, and so have discounted the original version to just £79, and it comes with free delivery. For just an extra £20, it seems like a no-brainer for a student to buy this tablet over a Kindle.
This one is a little out of budget for me but would have been an ideal choice if I didn’t already have a laptop. The Transformer Book impressively switches from a laptop to a tablet when you pull off the keyboard, so is the perfect gadget for a student. I could use this device recreationally to read on the train, and then stick the keyboard on in class to make notes as it comes with Microsoft Office. It comes with more storage than the other devices, and has a microSD card slot anyway if 32GB is not enough, so there is plenty room to download ebook apps and PDFs.