Kobo Nia, hands on: A capable competitor for the entry-level Kindle Review

For a lot of people today there is certainly only one particular maker of e book readers in town. But that’s not the scenario, and Kobo has been in the sector for a although. The hottest addition is the entry-amount Nia, a 6-inch product that prices £89.ninety nine (inc. VAT)/$ninety nine.ninety six. Major of Kobo’s reasonably considerable variety is the Forma, which prices £239.ninety nine/$249.ninety nine.

There is a dedicated Kobo e book shop which is not as perfectly populated as Amazon’s e-book shop. Nonetheless, if new titles and very best-sellers are your issue, you may almost certainly come across what you require. As opposed to its rival, a Kobo e book reader can also combine with your public library’s e-financial loans system, thanks to the romantic relationship concerning Kobo and OverDrive, which is the company of public library ebooks. It is effortless to set up, and opens a entire new globe of studying options — great ideal now, as public libraries continue being mostly shut.

if you require far more studying possibilities, Kobo also dovetails with Pocket, a world-wide-web browser add-on that allows you mark written content for studying at a later on day. Kobo can also share written content with Dropbox (although this short article relates to the Kobo Forma, it applies to the Nia way too). In all, the Nia — like other Kobo equipment — can tackle fifteen file formats: EPUB, EPUB3, FlePub, PDF, MOBI, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP, TIFF, TXT, HTML, RTF, CBZ and CBR.


The Kobo Nia has a 6-inch front-lit E-Ink display with a resolution of 212ppi. The wi-fi-only product is run by a one,000mAh battery and weighs 172g.

Graphic: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet  

The Kobo Nia is a neat minimal issue. At just 112.4mm extensive by 159.3mm deep by 9.2mm thick and weighing just 172g, it can be tremendous-effortless to fall it into your bag or backpack with no imagined for measurement or excess weight troubles. It is unashamedly plastic in develop, but I have no difficulty with that. I have been applying Kobo e book readers for decades, alongside the other big-brand equipment, and I have not yet cracked a casing or broken a product. The stippling on the back again may not appeal to everybody, but arguably it aids with grip.

The 6-inch E-Ink Carta exhibit has a resolution of one,024 by 758 pixels (212ppi). By comparison, its entry-amount rival the £69.ninety nine/$89.ninety nine Kindle also has a 6-inch display but only manages 167ppi (Amazon will not even point out the resolution in the Kindle’s spec sheet). Does that issue? Nicely, the increased pixel density of the Nia does necessarily mean textual content is that bit sharper, though frankly if you you should not have the two equipment aspect by aspect the comparison isn’t really that significant. Suffice to say, I was correctly satisfied studying on the Nia.

There is a front-light that lets you to browse even in constrained ambient light. Kobo calls it the ComfortLight, and you change it by jogging your finger up and down the still left edge of the display so there is certainly no require to shed your studying movement when you require a bit far more brightness. This is just an standard light, not a blue light filter, but I located it good.


The Kogo Nia has an accessible person interface and presents lots of configuration alternatives.

Illustrations or photos: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet

Major ZDNET Reviews

The Kindle person interface applied to be effortless to get all-around, but above time it has become advanced and some come across it complicated and unfriendly to work with. By contrast, Kobo retains matters very simple, with the house display just exhibiting your guides library divided from all those in development, and providing back links to shopping, your wishlist and other capabilities on a faucet-to-open menu.

SEE: 5G smartphones: A cheat sheet (absolutely free PDF) (TechRepublic)    

The variety of studying capabilities on provide is comprehensive. You can transform font and font measurement, there is certainly a dictionary, and a alternatively intelligent quick-ahead/back again system that you use by lengthy urgent the bottom still left or ideal of the display. This, in conjunction with the capacity to use a slider to go to any webpage and preview it to start with, research for words and phrases or phrases, go to certain webpage numbers and set bookmarks, implies there are lots of means to navigate a textual content.


The MicroSD charging/connection port is on the bottom, next to the electrical power button.

Graphic: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet  

With 8GB of storage on board, the Nia can tackle 6,000 ebooks at a time (the entry-amount Kindle has 4GB). That is a ridiculously massive number of guides and a great deal far more than any person is probable to want to carry all-around with them. The practical benefit of this a great deal storage is that you can maintain including written content to your library without having ever worrying about getting to require to make space for it. 

The one,000mAh battery is rated for ‘weeks’ of everyday living. That is not extremely distinct, and what you get will be impacted by how frequently you use the Kobo and no matter if you have Wi-Fi on or not (there is certainly no SIM right here). I turned Wi-Fi off when I failed to require it to conserve electrical power, and the battery has run a minimal of an hour’s studying a day for 6 days with the battery not yet twenty% depleted. So the battery is really excellent for an prolonged spell. That is excellent news as the legacy Micro-USB cost cable may be a hassle to recall to carry when you happen to be away for a few days.

Kobo can make a protecting scenario, the SleepCover, which will come in blue, yellow and black and prices just £19.ninety nine/$19.ninety nine. It is not particularly manufactured of high quality materials, but it does the position of shielding the Nia’s display and, as its title indicates, it automatically wakes the Nia up when opened, and places it into snooze manner when shut. 

If you happen to be hunting for an alternate to the standard entry-amount suspect, and you want a extensive variety of file help, which include effortless linking to public library e book financial loans, the Kobo Nia is absolutely really worth looking at.

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Rosa G. Rose

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