More e-readers came out this year, than any other year. Digital Readers are making a comeback and many vendors have different value propositions to woo customers. There are note taking devices that come with a stylus and are a replacement for paper and are geared towards prosumers. A multitude of screen sizes is very appealing to a wide audience. Whether you want a base model that is light on the pocketbook or a flagship that has all of the bells and whistles, there is more choice than ever.
Android e-readers have really grown up in 2018, this is a subset of devices that have been around for awhile. Many of the new products have really good hardware specs, such as a quad-core or octa-core processor, tons of storage and lots of RAM. You can see our top Android picks of 2018 HERE.
This list represents the best e-readers currently available in 2018 and we have reviewed every single one of them. Good e-Reader is in a great position to really put together a list, that puts all others to shame.
Kobo Forma – The Kobo Forma is the boldest design decision yet. It features the same asymmetrical industrial design as the Kindle Oasis, but Kobo takes it to an entirely new level with their hardware and software experience. It less of a liberal copy and more of an improvement on an existing concept. This device features a 8 inch 300 PPI display with a front-lit and Comortlight screen. You can borrow ebooks from Overdrive right on the e-reader and browse your local branches collection. This device is really designed for not only ebooks, but manga, magazines, newspapers and PDF files. It is also waterproof and dustproof, allowing you to read anything, anywhere.
Kindle Paperwhite 4 – This e-reader is likely the best Paperwhite product Amazon has ever released. It has a 6 inch screen with 300 PPI and is waterproof and dustproof. Audible is the big draw via bluetooth speaker or wireless headphones. You can shop for audiobooks and listen to them right on the Kindle. The ebook experience is great, and there new features to save different reading configurations if the Paperwhite is shared with a few different people. Amazon has the most extensive ebook ecosystem in the world and in the few months since it was released it’s frequently discounted and has been suffering from stock shortages because of the demand.
Pocketbook InkPad 3 – The InkPad 3 is one of the best Pocketbook e-readers. It features a 7.8 inch E Ink Carta display with a resolution of 1872×1404 and 300 PPI. It has a front-lit display with 10 white LED lights and 9 orange. I was surprised on how good this new Pocketbook ereader performs in low light conditions or complete darkness. I think this is primarily attributed to Pocketbook using new white LED’s than previous models, such as the Pocketbook Touch HD 2. Underneath the hood is a 1GHZ dual core processor, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of internal storage. There is a MicroSD port to enhance the storage up to 32 GB. This device does not have a 3.5mm headphone jack or a speaker, but Pocketbook has pioneered the concept of an audio dongle that plugs into the Micro USB port and has an audio output. This allows you to listen to audiobooks, music or podcasts. The InkPad 3 also has a text to speech engine, so you can initiate this function and have your books read aloud. The default is English, but there are 15 language packs to download from the main Pocketbook website.
Boyue LikeBook Mars – The Likebook Mars is the most powerful e-reader ever made. There is nothing like it, with its Octa-core processor and 2GB of RAM. Android and Google Play will give you full access to more apps than you can shake a stick at. The front-lit display has a color temperature system to make reading your favorite books at night fun and delightful.
Onyx Boox Poke Pro – The Poke Pro has a quad-core 1.6GHz processor with 16GB of storage space and 2GB of RAM. It is using Android 6.0 and features a 300 PPI, E Ink Carta display with a capacitive touchscreen and a frontlight with adjustable color temperature system.
Kindle Oasis 2 – The new Kindle Oasis features a 7 inch capacitive touchscreen display with resolution of 1680 x 1264 and 300 PPI. It includes includes 12 LEDs for uniform lighting across the screen and allows you to read in the dark. It carries an IPX8 rating which means it can stay completely submerged in two meters of freshwater for up to sixty minutes. The Kindle Oasis utilizes a brand new dual-core 1GHz processor with 512MB of RAM and this results in an e-reader that is tremendously robust. Navigating the menus, library or accessing the store is lightning quick. It is very likely that Amazon has made some software enhancements in conjunction with hardware upgrades. There are only two storage options available, 8 GB which will store around 15 audiobooks and a mix of e-books and a 32GB version. You can buy and listen to audiobooks via Bluetooth.
Kobo Clara HD – The Clara HD features an E-Ink Carta HD display with a 300 PPI display. The screen is not flush with the bezel, but there is a small dip. There is a USB port and power button on the bottom and the rest of the sides have nothing on them. The back of the Clara has a neat perforated design that makes it easy to hold and a high degree of grip. Underneath the hood is a 1GHZ Freescale Solo Lite processor, 512MB of RAM and 8GB of internal storage. Kobo has suspended expandable storage a few years and there is no Micro SD on the Clara HD. In order to conserve memory you have a number of options in the settings menu to automatically delete books from the device when you are finished reading them and you can do the same thing with Pocket articles. Speaking of Pocket the Kobo experimental browser also has Pocket integration, so you can save Pocket articles directly on the e-reader, instead of exclusively relying on the plugins for Chrome or Firefox.
Remarkable – The Remarkable 10.3 inch-writing tablet is appealing for consumers who want an extensive note taking experience and want to read e-books. This is the first product made by Remarkable and it is a very compelling first offering. They begun to take pre-orders last year, sold over 50,000 devices. The screen has a capacitive touchscreen and you can interact with most elements with your finger or the accompanied stylus. The note taking experience has palm rejection technology, which means you can easily rest your palm on it. The screen is completely flush with the bezel and the resolution is 1872×1404 with 226 PPI. Underneath the hood is a 1GHZ Arm A8 CPU processor and 512MB of RAM. You have 8GB of internal storage and there is no SD card. The Remarkable has Wi-Fi that is primarily uses to fetch firmware updates and to synchronize your notes on a local network. This is likely the best device out there to freehand draw, take notes and annotations.
Michael Kozlowski is the Editor in Chief of Good e-Reader. He has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past ten years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times.