November 24, 2018

First impressions of the Kobo Forma eReader

I tend to try each new generation of Kindle from Amazon and that remained true with the newest model, the 7″ Oasis.

I don’t love the Oasis. Its metallic finish feels cold in hand. And sharp, somehow. I do like the larger 7″ screen. It has hardware buttons for turning pages, which is a requirement for me.

I don’t have strongly negative feelings about buying from Amazon other than they’ve gotten a little big for their britches.

Lately, I have been buying real” books from local independent bookstores and that feels good, so I started looking at non-Amazon eReader options. The only viable choice looked to be the Kobo series, so I bought a Forma.

Kobo FormaKobo Forma

I’ve been using the Forma for about a week and here’s a quick list of my first impressions, comparing it to the Kindle Oasis.

Pros

  • I like the large, 8″ screen
  • It’s quite comfortable to hold
  • Landscape mode is interesting, but I’ve only used it a short time
  • It makes me feel good buying books from someone (anyone) other than Amazon
  • Library support (via Overdrive, but of course my library doesn’t use Overdrive, so I can’t test this)
  • I didn’t have to pay to remove ads (at least directly)

Cons

  • It feels a little cheap (Could be the price I pay for non-metallic finish?)
  • It’s quite expensive, which is emphasized by its cheap-ish feel
  • The hardware buttons are mushy”. The power button is especially finicky to use
  • Hardware buttons are too far apart. I have to reach to hit the top one.
  • No Goodreads integration
  • Discovery in the Kobo bookstore isn’t nearly as easy as on Amazon

I’ve read two books so far, and my overall impression is positive, but I’m not sure if I’ll stick with it or pass it on and return to the Oasis.


hardware kindle


Previous post
There’s Seldom Any Traffic on the High Road - Farnam Street She cracked a smile, the first I had seen from her since I joined the line. And she happily found me a seat on the next flight. She was being
Next post
The self-deceit of “Future Proofing” There are tricks we use to convince ourselves to buy the newest, most powerful devices. I myself have an entire quiver full of these tricks. I’ve