Reading Test – One Librarian’s Tech Comparison

With the holiday season barreling down upon us (QUICK EVERYONE! BUY STUFF!) and my library launching a tablet lending program, I have had the unique opportunity to read at length on several devices over just the last week.

My overall impression is that reading on a tablet is a pain in the wrist. The kind my library is circulating is the Nexus 7; which is comparable in weight to my Kindle Fire. The book I was reading on the Nexus was Dr. Sleep. That is a LOT of pages to hold that heavy tablet… If I had a choice, I would have much rather have had it on my regular Kindle or better yet my Nook, which is lighter than the lot of them.

Not only that, my eyes did NOT enjoy the backlit screen. I don’t read novels on the Kindle Fire. I use that for non-fiction books that require pictures (like cookbooks) and my daughter’s books (because kid’s books are no fun on an e-ink screen with no color). And some of those kids books are interactive. In other words, books I won’t spend an hour or more staring at. Not to mention that it’s no fun having Facebook notifications and emails popping up while you read (I could disconnect them but… Who disconnects at all these days?).

I used to have a problem with dedicated devices (i.e.: Tech that does only ONE thing like an eReader) but now I see the point much clearer than I did before. I mean, it’s cool and all to be able to Facebook, Tweet, email, play Candy Crush, AND read on the same device. Books with links embedded in them are much better on a tablet than a regular eReader but for me the point of reading is to be lost in the book. And it’s hard to do that if my wrist aches, my eyes burn, and people keep sending me effing Candy Crush requests.

To sum up, I prefer my Nook Simple Touch out of these 4 devices. I look for Nook versions of books whenever I can (and let me tell you, people: COMPARISON SHOP. There are tons of books on Amazon AND Barnes and Noble and sometimes one will be cheaper than the other). But it is very awesome that you can check out tablets from your local library. Ours come preloaded with some best sellers and I’m sure most libraries are doing the same with their tablets and eReaders. In my opinion, I would borrow the Nook. It’s kinder to your hands and your eyes.

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