I don’t know what to do throughout thunderstorms. I’m from Southern California, in any case, the place we’re accustomed to heat, sunny days, even in the course of the winter. So when the primary raindrop fell on the Kobo Clara 2E I used to be studying whereas within the park, my bewildered self naturally thought a hen peed on my overview unit. Only when the rain actually began to pour down did it hit me that I used to be caught in the course of a storm outdoors with no jacket or umbrella to guard me or this $129.99 e-reader. Needless to say, I freaked out and ran.
But there was no have to. It turned out the Kobo Clara 2E is best at coping with rainstorms than this, nicely, Californian author. Now again indoors, drenched and frazzled, I nervously clicked the facility button hoping I didn’t destroy it. The e-reader powered on and labored like regular, regardless of spending about twenty minutes outdoors in a literal storm.
I breathed a sigh of reduction.
Boasting an IPX8 waterproof score, Kobo’s $129.99 Clara 2E is its first six-inch waterproof e-reader — and clearly, it does the job nicely. Yet it’s simply one of many many new options Kobo’s newest e-reader affords that additional narrows the divide between the Kobo and Amazon’s ubiquitous Kindle. With a high-resolution show, twice the storage of the bottom Kindle Paperwhite, and Bluetooth help so you’ll be able to take heed to audiobooks, it’s Amazon e-reader different. I’d additionally advocate it if the ad-free $169.99 Kindle Paperwhite is just too costly however you’re hesitant to purchase the cheaper, equally specced Kindle as a result of it’s not waterproof.
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Before I even registered that this was a water-proof e-reader, I used to be impressed by the Kobo Clara’s 2E display screen. Given you purchase an e-reader primarily to, nicely, learn, a show that makes it straightforward to take action is an absolute should. Thankfully, the Kobo Clara 2E nailed this e-reader basic. It makes use of the identical sharp 300 PPI show discovered on Amazon’s newest Kindles so textual content reveals up crisp and clear, however with just a few additional customization options for a extra snug and accessibility-friendly studying expertise. Kobo, for instance, affords extra flexibility with sliders you need to use to regulate the font weight, margins, and line areas precisely to your liking, which is useful for these of us who don glasses. The Kindle Paperwhite permits you to modify these items too, however it’s a must to select from a set of preset choices. Plus, the Kobo additionally comes with barely extra font and font fashion choices, even one which’s catered to these with dyslexia.
Like the Kindle Paperwhite, the show additionally robotically adjusts its brightness and tone based mostly on the time of day. Combined with tech that reduces blue mild publicity and a darkish mode possibility, studying at evening and in low-light situations didn’t give me any complications or eye fatigue. And if you end up studying below the solar, it is best to have the ability to with out a difficulty because the show does job of considerably decreasing glare.
Yet the display screen comes with two weaknesses. First, the Kindle Paperwhite comes with a flush display screen, which means there’s no hole between the show and the facet of the e-reader. Unfortunately, the Clara 2E’s sunken show means there’s a hole the place it may gather some mud and grime. The second flaw is extra a matter of non-public choice. As an ordinary six-inch show, it’s smaller than the Kindle Paperwhite’s, which is 6.8 inches. That might make it a bit more durable to learn for some, nevertheless it additionally means it’s a bit extra pocketable and may be held with one hand, which I can’t comfortably do for lengthy stretches with the Kindle Paperwhite.
Speaking of what it’s like to carry the Clara 2E, a novel wavy sample on the again of the machine helps with grip and makes it simpler for me to hold it. Just watch out to not unintentionally press the facility button, which is positioned on the again. Otherwise, the e-reader looks like another plastic e-reader. However, there’s one massive distinction: in keeping with Kobo, the “eco-friendly” Clara 2E stands out as a result of it’s constituted of 85 p.c recycled plastic, with ocean-bound plastic accounting for ten p.c. It’s possible that is why Kobo included a wavy sample and made the again navy-colored in distinction to the black entrance. That’s a bit extra recycled materials than utilized in Amazon’s e-readers; the Kindle makes use of 30-75% recycled plastics, whereas the Kindle Paperwhite is constituted of 60 p.c recycled plastics.
According to Kobo, battery life ought to final weeks, though that depends upon how vivid you just like the show to be. With the display screen brightness turned on at 50 p.c and Wi-Fi enabled, it lasted for about two-and-a-half weeks earlier than I wanted to juice it again up, however I largely learn at evening for an hour or two. You might comfortably learn with 30 p.c brightness, particularly in case you largely learn in the course of the day and switch the Wi-Fi off sometimes, so the battery might last as long as 4 weeks for others. That’s not the Kindle Paperwhite’s “months-long” battery life nor the six weeks battery life the usual Kindle affords, although. Thankfully, the Kobo Clara 2E fees fairly rapidly, due to USB-C help. Using a sluggish five-watt USB energy adapter, I used to be nonetheless in a position to cost the e-reader from 50 to one hundred pc in about two hours which is on par with the Kindle.
Except for one main disadvantage, which I’ll clarify shortly, studying on the e-reader is usually an pleasant expertise. From the beginning, I appreciated there aren’t any annoying advertisements on the lockscreen, which it’s a must to pay additional to take away on Amazon’s e-readers. I additionally favored that the principle homescreen was much less cluttered with suggestions and different books than Amazon’s, which made it really feel much less overwhelming. Plus, there are even some good new experimental options you’ll be able to play with, like a sketchpad you’ll be able to take notes with or draw on both together with your finger or a stylus (offered individually) and a Large Print mode that enlarges textual content all around the Kobo.
Yet my pleasure over these items rapidly began to fade after I really began to navigate the menu. The Kobo Clara 2E is noticeably sluggish in comparison with each the Kindle and Kindle Paperwhite. As a consequence, navigation and turning pages by tapping on the touchscreen generally required me to attend a second or two. This was one thing that acquired on my nerves at instances — particularly whereas typing in my Wi-Fi credentials. While not a complete dealbreaker given the opposite praiseworthy options this e-reader boasts, it was undoubtedly a disappointment.
Performance points apart, although, I used to be proud of the big selection of content material you’ll be able to entry, particularly outdoors of the Kobo ecosystem. You can simply entry ebooks out of your public library of alternative due to OverDrive help. There’s even a tab on the homescreen for fast entry. In addition, you’ll be able to rapidly sideload ebooks, comedian books, and other forms of paperwork in 15 file codecs by utilizing a cable and a pc. Plus, due to its distinctive Pocket integration, you’ll be able to even learn articles you discover on-line in your e-reader by saving them to the app’s account — a characteristic that requires a bit extra legwork on the Kindle and doesn’t work as nicely. However, there’s no help for AZW recordsdata, so that you gained’t have the ability to learn Kindle books on the e-reader. That may very well be a disadvantage in case you’re already embedded in Amazon’s ecosystem.
If you do wish to purchase from Kobo, its on-line retailer additionally hosts hundreds of thousands of books, so that you’ll have the ability to purchase the newest bestseller simply out of your homescreen. I additionally favored that, like Amazon, Kobo usually reductions its ebooks and has a brand new, cost-effective book subscription service, the Kobo Plus, which is like Amazon’s Kindle Unlimited. After the free first month, you’ll must pay $9.99 a month for entry to over 1,000,000 ebooks. You also can recover from 100,000 audiobooks for $12.99 monthly. The library is admittedly fairly restricted compared to Kindle’s. However, you’ll be able to obtain a vast variety of ebooks at a time, which isn’t one thing Kindle Unlimited permits.
Speaking of audiobooks, not like its predecessor, the Clara HD, the Clara 2E additionally now helps Bluetooth. As a consequence, you’ll be able to take heed to dozens of audiobooks saved on the 16GB of storage, which is twice what the Kindle Paperwhite begins at. Unfortunately, nonetheless, you’ll be able to solely take heed to audiobooks bought from Kobo as you’ll be able to’t sideload them.
The Kobo Clara 2E is an effective e-reader, but would I like to recommend it over different e-readers like Amazon’s? It relies upon. At $129.99, the Kobo Clara 2E is $40 cheaper than the identical specced Kindle Paperwhite with no advertisements and 16GB of storage. Yet I wouldn’t select the Clara 2E over the Kindle in case you’re merely in search of a less expensive different. After all, for $119.99, you should purchase an ad-free base Kindle that shares a lot of what I like in regards to the Kobo Clara 2E, like a high-resolution show, nevertheless it’s rather a lot quicker. You’ll simply must be snug with the very fact it’s an Amazon e-reader that’s not waterproof.
However, in case you’re primarily in search of a water-proof e-reader that’s cheaper than the Kindle Paperwhite, or an Amazon different, then the Clara 2E is a strong different. It does job at nailing the basics, nevertheless it’s extra pocketable, customizable, and doesn’t come tethered to Amazon’s ecosystem.
Agree to Continue: Kobo Clara 2E
Like many e-readers, Kobo’s Clara 2E requires you to conform to a sequence of phrases and situations earlier than you need to use it — contracts that nobody really reads. It’s inconceivable for us to learn and analyze each single one among these agreements. But we began counting precisely what number of instances it’s a must to hit “agree” to make use of gadgets after we overview them since these are agreements most individuals don’t learn and undoubtedly can’t negotiate.
When you first use your Kobo Clara 2E, you’ll be requested to attach your machine both to Walmart eBooks by Rakuten Kobo, with third-party apps like Facebook, Google, and Apple, or by making a Kobo account. Once you try this, you need to give permission for Kobo to entry no matter account you select. For instance, in case you join your e-reader to Google, you’ll must conform to let Kobo and Google use your info in accordance with their respective privateness insurance policies. By the act of utilizing the e-reader, you additionally conform to Kobo’s terms and conditions. You wouldn’t have to attach and thus submit your debit / bank card info or different billing particulars to make use of the machine.
In complete, there are two necessary agreements to get began utilizing the Kobo Clara 2E.
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