Kobo Arc Review
Nov
19

Kobo Arc Review

By

Kobo recently released its second iteration Android Tablet, called the Arc. This was designed primarily to be a dedicated e-reader to give you a full color experience. This is tremendously useful when it comes to reading magazines, newspapers, cookbooks, kid’s books, and other content that is best displayed in full color. The Arc brings new features to the table that makes us forget about its first tablet offering, the Vox. How does this device stand up to the Nook HD or Kindle Fire HD? Today we dive into everything that makes this truly unique.

Hardware

The Kobo Arc features a seven inch HD display with a resolution of 1280×800 pixels and 215 PPI. The screen features IPS screen technology, which is an industry-leading display optimized for 178 degree viewing angles and ultra-durable glass, resistant to damage, scratches, bumps, and drops. This is the same type of screen technology that airline pilots have in their flight instruments. If you figure most airlines are flying above the cloud line and susceptible to lots of sunlight, this tablet excels under direct light where others fail.

Underneath the hood is a Texas Instruments OMAP 4470 1.5 GHZ dual core processor and 1 GB of RAM. There are three different storage options depending on the type of user you are—16, 32, and 64 GB. This is the first device the company has offered that actually does not have expandable memory. There is no support for MicroSD or SD cards, so you want to make sure you buy the best model to suit your needs.

The hardware really makes the Arc shine and makes common tasks tremendously robust. All programs that come bundled on it open very quickly. There is seldom any of the lag or delay that you would find on more budget Android tablets.

Many people ultimately purchase Android tablets to listen to music, audiobooks, or watch videos. It is critically important that the sound quality be solid. The Arc features front facing stereo speakers with SRS technology. This allows you to really boost up the volume levels and configure the bass and treble. When we attended the Kobo launch event in Toronto a few months ago, there were roughly 70 people in the room and it was surprisingly loud. When the SRS mode was engaged during our demonstration, the music and video sound levels were very clear.

Paying particular close attention to sound is something most companies fail to grasp. The Apple iPad has a single mono speaker and the entire Nook line of tablets have speakers on the back. Even the new Nook HD+ only has a single speaker. Amazon has done the best job so far with Dolby Surround Sound and incorporating four speakers on the Kindle Fire HD 7 and 8.9. The Kobo Arc, in terms of sound quality, is the second best we have ever reviewed.

On the sides of the device sits your 3.5 mm headphone jack and volume control options. On the top is your power button, which also puts it into standby mode. There is no dedicated home button and everything is software driven. One of the cool elements of this device is the ability to swap out the different color panels. Kobo has always released e-readers and tablets with a quilted back and when you purchased one, you were stuck with that particular color. With the ARC you have the ability to buy different colors that allow you to swap out the quilted back. Kobo has said that at launch there will be only five different colors available, but the company intends on launching more.

You will get around a solid 10 hours of battery life and the Arc ships with a DC power adapter that is similar to the way you would charge up the Vox. Many users have claimed that once they lose the adapter or want to buy an additional one for traveling or at the cabin, they find it hard to buy one. The unit also does not ship with a Micro USB cable, so you want to make sure you have one handy in order to copy ebooks directly to it or manage your media.

In the end, the Arc is one of the best dedicated reading tablets on the market. It blends hardware and software performance to give you a very distinctive experience.

Software

The Kobo ARC comes shipped with Google Android 4.04 and a Jellybean build is currently in the works. Having a modern operating system ensures that you can run virtually any game or app that tickles your fancy.

Kobo did a very positive thing last year by ironing out an agreement with Google to get the devices certified. This is great for customers, because the Arc comes bundled with Google Play, Google Music, Google Video, Google Maps, Gmail, and all the other services. You will have full-on access to over 600,000 apps via the official Android Market. This makes updating and downloading new content a walk in the park. Of course, we always recommend you download our own Good e-Reader App store, which puts a huge focus on ebooks, e-reader, and comic book apps, many of which are not available on Google Play or are geo-restricted.

If you have ever had experience with the Kindle Fire or Nook Tablet, you know that these companies invest a ton of time and money into customizing their own user interfaces. This really makes them stand out in a crowded tablet market and gives you an unique experience. Kobo has developed a distinctive UI that is better than what Amazon does with the Fire. It perfectly blends the vanilla Android experience with the ability to use live wallpapers and widgets.

One of the facets that really stand out is something Kobo calls “Tapestries.” They are autonomous folders that do a myriad of cool functions. If you have ever used Android and created your own folders with lots of apps and games, they can get cluttered really fast. Let’s say you have a games folder with over 100 games and you might only play a few on the regular basis. Normally, Android sorts everything alphabetically, which means you are often scrolling down to click on the game. Tapestries scan the things you open the most and brings them to the top of the screen. It makes clicking on commonly used programs and apps fairly intuitive.  The most commonly accessed programs’ icons are also semi-opaque on the folder itself on your main home screen. You can then visually look at your folders and see these translucent app icons in the background.   Another useful element of Tapestries is being able to use custom widgets within the folders. When I first fired up the Arc I made a new Tapestry that had Press Reader, Marvel, and Zinio. Not only are the apps in there, but I also put in a few widgets that give you a very similar experience to the way Microsoft handles the live tiles in Windows 8. Obviously all widgets behave differently, but it’s useful to show you what new content has just been released and what you are currently reading.

The default Tapestries that are shipped with the unit are Reading, Entertainment, and Social. Reading is very unique and obviously has the ubiquitous Kobo store and Reading Life. There is also a new feature called “Taste” which offers you a number of ebooks to try. You select whether you like them or not, and Taste helps in the discovery of new authors and books you would normally be unaware of.

The Kobo store is designed very well. I found the design to be more intuitive than the Barnes and Noble bookstore. Honestly, most of Kobo’s e-readers have a very text heavy interface and finding content usually involves diving into four or five sub-menus to find what you really want. The Android version features sweeping panoramic displays and cover art really stands out. If you find a book you like, you can easily download samples and even pin the book to your tapestry. Being able to pin it makes easy access to the book much more effective than opening your library and scrolling around.

The Kobo store has recently added graphic novels, comic books, kids’ books, and cookbooks to its ecosystem in the last few weeks. This really makes graphic heavy content look totally amazing on the Arc and in the past you needed an iPad to really get the most out of this type of content.  The overall comic book selection is still fairly lacking and you probably want to download the dedicated Comixology, Marvel, or DC apps for the best selection.

The Arc comes bundled with a ton of apps that might appeal to a wide array of users. 7 Digital, CinemaNow, Google Chrome, PressReader, Facebook, Readability, Rdio, and many Google Services. Really, this is the most complete tablet in terms of great apps. Of course, this is not a closed Android experience like the Kindle Fire or Nook HD. It is VERY easy to load in your own apps, or just install third party app markets.

Reading Experience

Kobo has the largest ebook ecosystem in the world with over 3.7 million books in its vast library. Unlike the competition, the entire selection of books can be purchased anywhere the world. Amazon and Barnes and Noble limits customer’s purchases if they live in countries not officially supported. Speaking of support, Kobo is in more international markets than any other company in the world. It makes traveling and buying content anywhere fairly easy.

The main Kobo reading application allows you to do the same things as most other mainstream apps. You can adjust the line spacing, margins, fonts, font sizes, and even hit the publishers defaults if you made adjustments not up to par. The app will also automatically switch the orientation from landscape and portrait mode. Obviously, comics and graphic novels look WAY better in portrait mode, but landscape is solid for most other things.

One of the main things that makes Kobo stand out from anyone else on the market is Pulse. If you buy a book from Kobo, a little radar icon appears on the bottom of the book. If you click on it you can visit a dedicated screen that shows you how many people have read it, are in the process of reading, and what they thought. People can also leave comments and questions. In the past, Kobo has orchestrated authors answering fans’ questions on Pulse. You can think of it as a virtual book club where people can talk about the book, life, universe, and everything.

When you do a long press on a specific word, you can pull up the definition of it. You have built in dictionaries that come bundled on the ARC, but you also pull up the Wikipedia entry and other Google Services. If you select more than one word you can take a note, highlight, or share it on your Facebook Timeline.  One of the cool features is being able to choose what color you want to highlight. By default there are four different colors, which allow you color coordinate concepts.

Kobo Reading Life is something that really stands out from the competition. You can earn X-Box style awards and achievements for reading books. There are around 50 different ones currently in the system with new ones added all the time. You can share your awards with your friends and it adds a new dimension to the traditional reading experience. It might not be for everyone, but is just another facet that makes the company stand out in a cluttered market.

Of course, the great thing about the Arc is that you are not limited to what is bundled on it when you buy it. You can simply download Amazon, Nook, Sony, or any other e-reader app you want from Google Play. This is empowering because if you look the Nook App Market or the Amazon App Store, they seldom have dedicated reading apps from their competition, which locks you into their own walled garden. Kobo has always been software agnostic, which should be appealing to people who want freedom to deal with whoever they want.

Our Thoughts

The Kobo Arc is the best tablet the company has ever released. It perfectly blends cutting edge hardware with a very unique Android experience. It runs basically any app or game that you can throw at it, and takes it in stride.

The entire Kobo ecosystem appeals to people living internationally. I am based in Canada and can’t even buy a Kindle Fire or Kindle Paperwhite or Nook reader. Even if I were to import it, both companies limit the amount of content I can buy. With the Kindle Fire HD, I can’t download magazines, videos, newspapers, and a number of other content. The Nook doesn’t even allow you buy ANYTHING unless you have a USA billing address or credit card. Shop e-Readers actually helps customers in this regard by selling USA Visa Cards, along with a billing address. The Kobo ARC will allow you to buy anything and download anything you want, regardless of your geographical location.

I would recommend the Arc to anyone who is thinking about buying a tablet as a dedicated e-reading device and wants a little more. Tablets allow you to do way more than e-ink based readers do, but come with a massive amount of distractions. If you are a first time tablet user or are invested into the Kobo ecosystem, I would not look at any other device this year.

Pros

Excellent Hardware
Android 4.0
Tapestries
Great Store Experience
Wide Array of Bundled Apps
Solid Price
Firmware Automatically Updates
Front Facing Speakers with SRS technology
Google Certified

Cons

No MicroSD or SD
Graphic Novel and Comic Book Selection Lacks
No Rear Facing Camera
Needs a Certain Kind of DC Charger to Power the Unit.

Rating: 9/10

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Michael Kozlowski (4322 Posts)

Michael Kozlowski is the Editor in Chief of Good e-Reader. He has been writing about electronic readers and technology for the last four years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the Huffington Post, CNET and more. Michael frequently travels to international events such as IFA, Computex, CES, Book Expo and a myriad of others. If you have any questions about any of his articles, please send an email to michael@goodereader.com


  • Tess66

    Thanks so much for such a comprehensive review :) I’d have loved the second camera as well, but OTOH, I have more than enough devices that take pictures *g*.

  • Cecily Walker

    This was a very useful review.  I’m wondering if you’ve had the opportunity to compare the Arc to the Nexus 7, specifically in terms of text display for ebooks? Right now the Nexus 7 costs a bit more than the Arc in Canada, and I’m not sure whether the fact that the Nexus ships with Jellybean instead of ICS is enough for me to choose the Nexus over the Arc. The deciding factor will be how crisp and clear the text is on the readers. 

  • http://goodereader.com/blog/ Good E-Reader

     Honestly, so many tablets hit the market, that we don’t review many. We tend to focus on tablets billed as e-readers or have unique UI’s that put the emphasis on reading. Nexus 7 is as vanilla as you can get, whatever ecosystem you want to deal with, you are good to go. On tablets like this, reading is an afterthought.  You don’t build a quadcore one to read books, you do it to play games and whatnot.

  • Josemn

    I am really looking for reading without restrain and access to My kindle and nook books. Is it a go or should I keep on waiting?

  • kei

    >> Unlike their competition their entire selection of books can be purchased anywhere the world.
    Has this be verified?
    I couldn’t find a way to access Japanese books from US.
    Google/jp found me the website of Kobo Japan ( http://rakuten.kobobooks.com )
    But except the menu is in Japanese, all books displayed are English books and priced in USD. Nothing looks like the screen caps in this review : http://ebook.itmedia.co.jp/ebook/articles/1210/02/news012.html
    I then tried searching for a couple of titles and authors that appeared in that Japanese review, 0 hit. 
    Kobo seems to implement region restrictions.
    I really hope I was wrong and the statement about world-wide accessibility is true.

  • http://goodereader.com/blog/ Good E-Reader

     Well, what we mean is this.

    Most European countries, Russia, and countries that don’t have a dedicated bookstore can access kobo. If you want to buy books from Barnes and Noble outside the UK and US? Good luck, be prepared for VPN’s and usa credit cards.

    Amazon offers many books to most countries, but Kobo leads them all with books in over 12 different languages and can be bought from anywhere in the world. Obviously if you are trying to access the Japanese Kobo books from a country other then Japan, this is evident with any reader. You can’t for example access the UK version of the nook store, unless your IN the UK, Japan works like this for Sony, Kobo and Amazon. They have custom firmware for e-readers in those countries that are not able to produce complex characters on international builds.

  • http://goodereader.com/blog/ Good E-Reader

     You can download Kindle or Nook books from their official apps on Google Play. The Kobo lets you install any apps you want.

  • Fielding

    One thing I love about the Kobo Arc is the fact that it is a tablet that does not look like a tablet and but has Kobo’s unique signature design. I love everything about it. I highly recommend this product to everyone who is looking for a dedicated eReader device and more. I found that the cons in your article were quite weak to be honest. I don’t think the selection in content should be attributed with the core dynamic of the eReader. But I know you had to find cons somewhere, and it was probably really difficult to find some. But you hit the money with the lack of an expandable hard drive. My personal con I have is the short charging cable it is very very short.

    All in all an amazing review

  • The Ogre

     That is assuming, of course, that you aren’t geo-restricted – can’t install the Nook app (and won’t even see it!) from Play if you’re in Canada, for example.

  • Anon

    Can you please confirm whether micro SD or Sd card slots are present in kobo arc? Your review seems to suggest it is, but the cons seem to suggest it is not

  • The Ogre

    The Arc has no card slots (and doesn’t support OTG (“On the Go”) USB connections, so no accessing external storage that way).  Sad that Kobo fell to the same lure as Apple & Google of making people buy higher-priced models (though not nearly as much of a markup as Apple, at least) for more storage.

  • http://goodereader.com/blog/ Good E-Reader

     There is no sd or micro sd

  • http://goodereader.com/blog/ Good E-Reader

     I agree, but you can download it from our own Good e-Reader App Store – http://goodereader.com/apps/android-apps/e-reader-apps/?did=2

  • Kobo reader

    You should proof read your reviews. Your review is misleading.  You wrote “There are three different storage options depending on the type of user you are—16, 32, and 64 GB. One thing Kobo does very well (that you would never find in a Kindle or an Apple product) is expandable memory via Micro SD. You can increase it up to 64 GB by purchasing your own SD memory card to store ebooks, videos, and music.”  This implies that the Kobo  Arc does in fact have an SD or Miscro SD slot.  But then you confirm that there is no slot.  That’s a bad mistake.

  • http://goodereader.com/blog/ Good E-Reader

    Thanks, i amended the review. We have reviewed over 6 e-readers and tablets in the last two days and things tend to blur together! Thanks for your eagle eye Kobo Reader.

  • Cecily Walker

    Fair enough. Thanks.

  • Lina

    Do you have any comments about what it is like reading on the arc as opposed to an e-ink screen?  I have heard things about it being a strain on the eyes to read extensively on certain tablets and I am wondering how the Arc is in this regard.  Thanks!

  • http://goodereader.com/blog/ Good E-Reader

     Well, its a backlit screen. So its not as easy on the eyes then a dedicated e-reader, but its a tradeoff. Some people want to game and read blogs and watch movies on a tablet. Most don’t want these distractions and want an e-reader.

  • Pauly

    Great review, very comprehensive…. thanks!
    Does the Kobo Arc play video from CNN, CTV etc?? I realize Flash is no longer supporting Android… but wondering if there is a workaround as I love surfing web sites and watching news etc.

  • Tess

     I’ve found using the Sepia setting on my Vox works very well to help combat eye strain…I’m assuming that option is still available on the Arc?

  • Andy Juram Lee

    This is a product details not REVIEW…
    Where is the review??

  • Kevin

    Am thinking of buying an Arc.  One question, have you looked at how it performs reading PDFs.  Seen your Kobo Glo review, would you consider the performance of the Arc similar to the Glo.
    Many thanks for the good work

  • Pauly

     Do you mean benchmarks etc? Cause the above article is full of descriptors about the features etc. and compares it to others.

  • Mr_tewilliger

    Does anyone know if you are able to modify the DNS settings for wi-fi on the Arc?

    Thanks!

  • Jetajoe

    Looking to purchase my first e-reader……..torn between Kobo Glo and Kobo Arc.  My understanding is that the Glo has a backlit screen – I assume the Arc is more of a “computer-like” screen??  Is it hard on the eyes?  Is the Arc heavy (especially to read while in bed)?  Any suggestions/help?

  • Mr.Kelrem

    Just search it up on Google. There would be many sites that you could go to.

  • waxzy

    Just bought a Glo. It does not have a backlit screen, it is frontlit. Check out some of the reviews of it online to give you more information about what that is. I had the Kobo Touch and loved it and so far think that the Glo is even better.

  • Richardcompton

    I recently purchased the arc and its the best investment I’ve, made this year, cant fault its performance and very user friendly. The only criticism is the camera quality and maybe having a USB port.

  • Thomas

    In the review you said that the Kobo comes bundled with the PressReader software. I’d like to know if it works only in connection with newspapers or magazines that can be bought via the PressReader platform or if it allows you to transform i.e. to change the layout of
    any newspaper website in order to get a more easily readable text layout by using the so-called SmartFlow function.

    Thanks in advance for your answer and the interesting review

  • When / where to buy in U.S.?

    Does anyone know when this device will be available for purchase in the U.S.?
    Thanks.

  • Tess

    Does the Arc support .jpgs? The specs on the Arc’s page at Kobo.com say it does, but an answer in the Kobo Support section says it doesn’t.

    Thanks :)

  • Louise

    Hmmm, just bought a Kobo Arc at Chapters Indigo and asked if I could upgrade to more memory at any time and two salespeople told me yes that you just add in a card.   I’m assuming they were wrong then???

  • Pauly

     Yes they were wrong.  The Kobo Arc does not have SD or any external memory capability and you cannot upgrade to a device with more memory.  You bought it you live with it.

  • Angelsanddemons

    How do I put epubs from IBooks into the Kobo Arc? Also, is the Kobo Arc good for when you want to read in bed?

  • Fred

    The Kobo ebook store does limit titles by buyer’s geographic residence and what was said in the review was incorrect.  For example, I can’t purchase ebook editions of Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy from New Zealand and there are plenty of other titles where I have the same problem. 

  • Stephaneamiot

    “Kobo has the largest ebook ecosystem in the world with over 3.7 million books in its vast library.”Truth: most of them are from the google awfully scanned free ebooks library and are not readable

    “Unlike the competition, the entire selection of books can be purchased anywhere the world. Amazon and Barnes and Noble limits customer’s purchases if they live in countries not officially supported.”
    Truth: like its competitors, Kobo gives access to ebooks where they are allowed to sell them (information provided in the publisher’s metadata). No particular advantage over Amazon. 

    “Speaking of support, Kobo is in more international markets than any other company in the world. It makes traveling and buying content anywhere fairly easy.”
    Truth: again, you can buy an ebook abroad only if your credit card address matches with the authorized territories. No miracles!

  • readpol

    CAN YOU PUT YOUR OWN DIGITAL PHOTOS ON IT?
    Dave

  • Tess

     yes – you’ll need a micro-USB cable to connect it to your computer to transfer, or you can download them…

  • Rbarnes59

    Does it have Bluetooth capability?

  • Wanna Be Kobo Fan

    Michael – your neighbors to the South need your help. After the anticipated release of the Arc in the USA came and went on Nov 29th without so much as a mention, many of us are left wondering if the Kobo Arc will ever be released in the USA?

    Has Rakuten failed to get FCC approval for the Kobo Arc? Or maybe they have decided there is too much competition in the USA with Apple. Google and Amazon to even attempt entering the market?

    Or, as I am hoping, they have decided to re-engineer the Kobo Arc by adding the stupidly omitted Micro SD card slot that the device is currently lacking?

    No one in the tech world is talking about the Arc’s arrival in the USA, which kind of leaves me to believe no knows and Rakuten is keeping quiet for one reason or another….

  • Peter S

    WARNING: the initial initialization process, which includes a huge download, cannot be done over most public wi fi networks. If the wifi has an initial page that you click on to agree to its use you are out of luck. You cannot open a browser until you initialize. You cannot initialize via public wifi until you click the agree button in a browser. If you have a work around for this problem, would love to hear it.

  • http://twitter.com/PCN_DiRT DiRT

    Why would anyone ever buy any comics from B&N, Amazon, or Kobo instead directly from comiXology in the first place?

  • Rodolfo Schmauk Ortúzar

    Any news on when it will be available in the US?

  • Uberman5000

    There’s an open-source program called Calibre that lets you manage e-books of all kinds of formats and transfer them to your tablet or e-reader. Failing that, you can just mount it as a USB drive and drag epubs into its books folder.

  • Anthony Tarantino

    I’ve never heard of Kobo, but with the backing of that Japanese online store Rakuten, hopefully they will carve out a nice niche to better compete with Amazon and Barns & Noble.

    I guess Kobo needed a boost to get more recognition, and Rakuten seems to be a good choice (even though that company is still a niche in itself).

  • Courtney

    Does the screen glare in the sun? Can I use this to read outside

  • Pauly

    No bluetooth…sigh!

  • Pauly

    I read the Kobo Arc .pdf User Manual on my Arc. Very impressed by how clear it was etc. But as someone mentioned earlier, it all depends on how the .pdf was made and where it came from (re: Word/Desktop Publishing Program etc.)

  • Pauly

    I’ll answer my own question lol. Bought the Arc and it plays most news site videos very clearly and wow what a sweet screen. Very clear type etc.

  • Pauly

    Well, I got a great deal on the Kobo 16GB Arc-bought it for $199CDN with free Kobo Mini Reader normally $79CDN at Chapters/Indigo. Could not resist even though I looked at both the Nexus 7 and the Arc together.

    Pros:
    Easy set up, quick update on my home web (do not trust public ones for updating!)
    Love the screen: Colour and Clarity is awesome; very responsive for videos, very clear and crisp text, lots of font/size/margin/brightness choices for e-reading.
    Apps/books load very quickly and are very responsive.
    All buttons are out of the way of holding the device portrait or landscape,which I need. (Nexus 7 vol rocker and power button are side by side… guess what I would be doing with that!
    Two web browsers (Chrome and Android) preloaded both with good features, very responsive voice activated search right on the home screen. I was surprised the front camera was decent (but then most cameras are kind to me :)
    Sound is way better than all tablets I have heard (I cranked up Led Zep for a test run.) Not bad at all. With using the included SRS Technology software it actually sounded O.K. for a personal device. Sound is excellent with headphones, had to turn it way down but the quality was surprisingly excellent.
    Full access to Google and any other store that will allow you. (I have Amazon/Kindle loaded too)
    Eco system is actually helpful and you can turn it off, you can get other starter screens (Go etc), and free utilities like Easy Cleaner to control CPU/RAM use. Discover ribbon is discreet and is actually like having a research assistant, suggests articles, videos etc. on books you read or web searched.
    Specs: Higher res. screen, faster CPU and double the RAM than the Apple Mini at a much lower price…duh!
    Very good battery life. (Nexus 7 shines here though re: its quad core speed was quite tempting indeed)

    Cons:
    No Bluetooth = no external keyboards or other Bluetooth devices
    No external storage (although I rarely used the one on my ‘old’ 8GBVox).
    A little heavier than others, not as good a build quality ‘look’ re: the quilt-look back (which I like for holding) vs. classy looking magalunimum/metal
    Later to receive updates for Android re: it comes with Ice Cream Sandwich Android ver. 4.04 in the box, Kobo is working on Jellybean update; If you prefer a vanilla android experience and want the latest updates a.s.a.p. go for Nexus 7 or take a chance on the many foreign android tablets.

    Definitely one sweet colour reader/tablet!!

    Also, Power tablet users should note that although the Arc’s dual core 1.5Ghz/dual core GPU/1GB RAM is very good, you may prefer Nexus 7’s quad core even though many apps are not designed for it yet.

    Hope this helps!

  • sam

    Question. Where is the USB cable? Where can I get one?

  • http://goodereader.com/blog/ Good E-Reader

    Its a standard Micro USB to USB cable, you can get them at any electronics store or like a Best Buy, Future Shop Etc. you can order them online at http://www.shopereaders.com

  • jmnsnow

    It is so disappointing to still not be able to buy the ARC in the USA. I finally bought the Chuwi V7 that was reviewed here or in Good E-Reader and I daresay that there are many doing the same. By the time the Arc is available some of the Nook and Kindle tablets will be priced around the 100$ price point and technology moved forward another notch. There is still a lot of room for optimizing and improving the E-reading experience on tablets and that’s why I decided on the Chuwi and not the Nexus.

  • Beverly

    I purchased a 32gb on line on Wednesday this week at family Christian website. They only had black and 32 gb but that was fine with me> I really do not care about the color as I put it in a case

  • jodi

    i am having problems with my kobo arc. received it for christmas. Yesterday it shut down completely and would not charge. i think the battery was depleted, but charge light would not come on. today, it is frozen on a grey screen with Play store at the top. do you think it is the kobo? could it be a virus? is there security i can install? can’t find the reset others are talking about. One said power button and round button on front. can’t find a round button on front. Your assistance would be appreciated.

  • justachick

    Id like something that I can plug into my AUX port in my truck to listen to audio books while I drive. I can do this on my iphone but Its not much room for sever.al books. I travel alot and it would be a tipping point if I could find one with this ability

  • Kim

    I do not like the ARC The customer service sucks — anytime I have asked for further assistance they have directed me to the owners manual which I might add does not come with the unit.

  • Jack

    bought one – this has to be the worse piece of junk I have ever invested in – no support, no help, I do no know where these techies get their info from.

  • jbailie

    I bought this for my wife, however, it has been nothing but trouble. Support is horrible. Could not solve my problem so said someone else would call – never heard from them again. No instructions how to use this stupid thing. Should have bought an mini ipad. Highly NOT RECOMMEND!!! If it was mine, I would have used my hammer on it by now.

  • rogers

    BUYER BEWARE: Kobo’s warranty is less than acceptable. I had to deal with them because my Vox no longer worked; I have not had it for a full year yet. Their solution is to replace it with a RE-FURBISHED unit. Apparently that’s their POLICY and it is spelled out in the fine print of their warranty. If you purchase the Arc, it has the same conditions so hopefully it will last you longer than a year.

  • sachin desai

    really awesome electronic reader…
    http://dealtz.com/electronics

  • Michael

    To expand memory you can use the wi drive from Kingston

  • Paul

    “If you’ve ever forgotten your eReader at home, you’ll appreciate free Kobo eReading apps. Now you can access your entire library, including your bookmarks, from any open device and pick up right where you left off! Read on your Mac or PC computer, or Apple, Android, and BlackBerry smartphones and tablets. It’s seamless!”

    http://www.kobo.com/koboarc

    I might be wrong but I think the quote I got above from the Kobo website means that you can store your books on some sort of Kobo cloud storage in the Kobo eReading apps which would solve the 16GB limit on the Kobo ARC 7 inch HD, anybody?

  • Charbles

    No there is no sd slot. I thought there was too but I just received it and none to be seen. The kobo arc 7 has a sd card slot but apparently the upgraded kobo arc 7 is not as good as the arc. You decide…

  • charbles

    you are right, it is very mis leading. It is how they described it when I bought it. That is why I thought it was expandable. What they really mean is you can buy a 16,32 or 64gig kobo but they don’t come with a sd card slot. One thing I realized after I recieved it was the kobo arc7 has an expandable sd card slot up to 32 gigs of mem. That confused me also thinking mine was the arc 7 when in reality it was the arc. man, technology can be quite stressful!!! LOL Cheers

  • Mike

    I purchased two of these tablets (Kobo Arc 32G) as Christmas gifts. By late January neither one would charge. The USB port on one of the units was loose inside so after trying 5 different, known working cables, I could not get it to charge. The second unit at least the USB port worked however the battery would not go above 0%.

    I started exchanging emails with Kobo starting 31 Jan and they became totally unresponsive about 8 days ago. I am left with two useless tablets and no support from the company that makes and sells the product.

  • jojo

    I really enjoy this KOBO. I was wondering what anti glare screen cover you recommend?

  • Megan

    Regretfully no there is no SD slot or micro SD slot.
    Essentially if you plan on keeping a lot of files i recomend you buy the larger memory unit initially.

  • rouillardjos

    In Canada, the tablet have reach rock bottom price as Kobo is clearing them for their new ones. So it’s certainly the best deal ever on a 7 inches tablet for such quality until they are all gone. I bought two and have no problems so far. The missing usb cable is annoying but you can use the excellent Airdroid app to transfer your medias.

  • Michelle

    It absolutely does glare in the sun and I am not able to read outside. And I have added the anti-glare screen recommended.

  • Jim

    do NOT buy this …. bought one of these for my wife, within 8 months the USB connector had broken and could not power it back. then had weeks of back and forth with their customer ‘service’ and I use that term in the most loosest possible terms, before they finally agreed to send a replacement. So replacement arrives, and in less than a year, the USB connector is … broken once more and is unable to charge the device. my recommendation, buy a surface and install the KOBO app if that is what you are looking for, as this device is NOT robust and is severely limited in its usage.

  • DancingTiger

    For those reading the top comment about the usb charger, well any micro usb cord will do the trick and just plug it into your computer, also all the other kobo’s would charge with the apple charger. I just got the arc today, kinda upset about the lack of use in the sun but I knew that when I bought it. It is much heavier then my other kobo. Now that I have figured out how to add downloaded books from pc ( use caliber! ) I agree it is one of the best readers. Still tho I will keep my paper white handy since there is a lot of light in the world. When they figure out how to combine both aspects into a single device much of the reading world will throw a party. A button to switch from paper white screen , to the other would be wicked.