The best ereader for 2024: top ebook readers from Kindle, Kobo and more (2024)

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  • Best for kids
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Best ereader: Quick menu

The best ereader for 2024: top ebook readers from Kindle, Kobo and more (1)

The list in brief
1. Best overall
2. Best budget
3. Best mid-range
4. Best Kindle
5. Best large screen
6. Best premium
7. Best color screen
8. Best compact
9. Best durable
10. Best for kids
11. Best Android

When it comes to choosing the best ereader for you, you are no longer restricted to Amazon's Kindles. There are more choices to explore, with competition from Kobo, Onyx Boox and PocketBook.

There was a time when ereaders did one thing – let you read without any distractions from other apps. Today, however, you get ereaders that do more, and not just jot notes. For example, most of the higher-end Onyx Boox devices give you access to the Google Play Store, so you can use a plethora of apps on the e-paper tablet. So how do you choose the best ereader for you?

You do that by answering a few questions, questions like: is waterproofing important to you? Do you prefer to hold and operate your ereader in one hand? Do you need to borrow library books (particularly if you live outside the US)? Do you read a lot of comics and graphic novels that are better on a color screen? Do you scribble notes in margins or require something for research and journaling?

Once you've figured out what exactly you want from your reading device, you can use our list of the best ereaders below to find what's right for you and your budget. We also have suggestions for the best tablets and best Kindles, if you have a more specific idea in mind.

Whatever your needs, all ereaders use similar E Ink technology which, at the time of writing, is the Carta 1200 screen for black-and-white models, although the next-gen E Ink Carta 1300 display is making it to market. This display is responsive, and text on the screen has good contrast to make reading in any lighting condition easy. The best color display is the E Ink Kaleido 3 screen technology, although colors appear slightly muted compared to what you'd see on your phone or tablet. A new display called E Ink Gallery 3 was supposed to debut a while back that would add more saturation and sharpness, but that seems to have run into issues unknown. Until then, below are your best options.

Recent updates

May 1, 2024: With new products hitting the market, we've updated some of the categories in this buying guide with the latest ereaders where necessary. This means we have a new pick for the best overall ereader, and we've added a couple of new categories for the best compact and best large-screen ereaders too.

Written by

The best ereader for 2024: top ebook readers from Kindle, Kobo and more (2)

Written by

Sharmishta Sarkar

Sharmishta is TechRadar's APAC Managing Editor and spends most of her free time buried in a good book. It's how she got into ereaders in the first place – going digital due to a lack of space to store her books and being able to carry her entire library with her wherever she went. She's been testing ereaders for about six years now and has appeared on Singaporean radio twice to speak about these underrated tablets.

The quick list

Want to cut to the chase and find out which ereaders are the absolute best? Take a look below. You can also jump to a more detailed review of each ereader further down the page, and our price comparison tool will help you find the best deals.

Best overall

Kobo Libra Colour

Best for most people

Keeping everything that made the Kobo Libra line our pick of the best ereader for years, the Kobo Libra Colour adds a color screen to mix, plus stylus support. And at a price that's not all that much more than its predecessor, it's excellent value for a full-featured ereader.

Read more below

Best budget

Amazon Kindle (2022)

Best budget ereader

The 2022 edition of the Amazon Kindle base model ereader is lighter than any previous iteration. But it's not as cheap as its previous siblings. Still, despite a small markup in price, it's the best ereader for anyone on a tight budget or looking for a small, pocketable Kindle.

Read more below

Best mid-range

Kobo Clara 2E

Best mid-range ereader

With a body made mostly from recycled plastic and a 6-inch screen that's clear, crisp and responsive, this ereader also offers waterproofing that the base Kindle model doesn't. There's also audiobook support here. In fact, it's a very worthy upgrade to the original Kobo Clara HD.

Read more below

Best Kindle

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2021)

Best Kindle

Released in 2021, the latest Kindle Paperwhite is bigger and better than any that came before. It boasts a bigger 6.8-inch screen and a bigger battery. It was also the first Kindle to get a USB-C charging port. And, if you have the extra cash, the Signature Edition also gets you wireless charging.

Read more below

Best large screen

Kobo Elipsa 2E

Best large-screen ereader

A 10.3-inch note-taking ereader is expensive, but a large screen is not just great for reading, but writing on as well. You'll find it useful if you're a student, researcher or do a lot of journaling. You can scribble in the margins of books or create notes from scratch, with a plethora of writing tools at your disposal.

Read more below

Best premium

Amazon Kindle Scribe

Best premium ereader

It's that screen! Amazon has used the same E Ink Carta 1200 screen on its first ever note-taking ereader and yet made it look brighter than any others. It's got a 300ppi resolution as compared to the 227ppi on competing ereaders. A metal finish rounds up the luxurious reading experience on a large screen.

Read more below

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Best color

Kobo Clara Colour

Best color ereader

It may not have all the bells and whistles of some of the other ereaders on this list, but if it's a color screen on a budget you're after, the Kobo Clara Colour is it. This compact 6-inch package is arguably the cheapest color ereader on the market, but you won't get any writing features here.

Read more below

Best compact

Onyx Boox Palma

Best compact ereader

It looks remarkably like a phone but it won't make any calls. It will, however, allow you to download Android apps from the Google Play Store and read in black and white without as much eye fatigue. It's not cheap, but there's really nothing like it on the market right now.

Read more below

Best durable

PocketBook Era

Best durable ereader

It's got a great design that makes it stand apart from the crowd and boasts a speaker too. While the latter doesn't have great sound quality, it's the screen that's the standout here. It's got an anti-scratch coating that not a lot of other ereaders boast, in addition to the IPX8 waterproofing rating.

Read more below

Best for kids

Kobo Nia

Best for kids

While the obvious choice for a kid-friendly ereader would be the Amazon Kindle Paperwhite Kids, it isn't available in all markets. The Kobo Nia, however, is more widely available and is cheaper too. Borrowing books is easy if OverDrive support is available at your local library, but keep in mind the Nia is not waterproof.

Read more below

Best Android

Onyx Boox Tab Mini C

A 7.8-inch color display, a stylus in the box and full access to the Google Play Store makes the Onyx Boox Tab Mini C one heck of an e-paper tablet. It's heavy, but that's only because of its massive battery. It's also expensive, but this Android 11 tablet will let you take notes, read and even play mobile games.

Read more below

The best ereader for 2024

Why you can trust TechRadar We spend hours testing every product or service we review, so you can be sure you’re buying the best. Find out more about how we test.

Below you'll find full write-ups for each of the best ereaders in our list. We've tested each one extensively, so you can be sure that our recommendations can be trusted.

The best ereader overall

The best ereader for 2024: top ebook readers from Kindle, Kobo and more (14)

1. Kobo Libra Colour

The best ereader overall is now in color

Specifications

Screen size: 7-inch

Screen type: E Ink Kaleido 3

Storage: 32GB

Resolution: 300ppi (B&W); 150ppi (color)

Weight: 199.5g

Front light: Yes

Touchscreen: Yes

Wi-Fi: Yes

Battery life: up to four weeks

Reasons to buy

+

Good balance between price and features

+

Stylus support

+

Color display

Buy it if

✅ You want a mid-range ereader with plenty of features:The balance between price and feature set is really good, offering good bang for buck.

✅ You want to operate your ereader in one hand:The page-turn buttons and asymmetrical design makes it easy to hold and use the Libra Colour in one hand.

You want a relatively open ecosystem:Other than its audiobooks, Kobo doesn't lock you into its own platform, allowing you to easily sideload files or borrow from a library.

Don't buy it if:

❌ You plan to make a lot of notes:The 7-inch screen feels too small to take full advantage of Kobo's Advanced Notebooks. A larger screen would be better for that.

You don't need a color display: You can save money by opting for a grayscale ereader if color content isn't important to you.

Announced in April 2024, Kobo has replaced its Libra 2 ereader with a color version and also added stylus support. Launching at a price not all that much more than its predecessor, the Kobo Libra Colour takes over as our best overall ereader by offering a good balance between price and feature set.

Like the previous two Libra ereaders before it, the Libra Colour is the right size for the average reader – not too small, not too large – and it retains the asymmetric design that makes it handy to use single-handed. In fact, it's a touch lighter than its predecessor, coming in at 199.5g compared to the Libra 2's 215g.

The color screen is the headline here, though. Even if you don't read much color content like comics or graphic novels, just seeing a book cover displayed the way it's meant to be can enhance the reading experience.

Plus you now get writing features on Kobo's mid-range ereader. You need to buy the Kobo Stylus 2 separately though, but considering the Libra Colour is launching at a price only slightly higher than the previous model, we'd say that's a fair bargain.

And not only is 85% of the ereader body made with recycled plastics, the packaging it ships in is fully recycled and recyclable, with the ink used to print the images and text on the box made from soy, which makes it biodegradable. It's also IPX8-rated waterproof.

Kobo is also hoping to make this device repairable in the near future, partnering with iFixit to provide users with repair kits and guides to extend the lifespan of the device. There's still no information on how this will work or what kind of kits are going to be available, but it's still a change in the right direction.

Everything else we love about the more premium Kobo devices is here – 32GB of storage, access to OverDrive, Pocket and Kobo Plus directly from the tablet, plus cloud file transfer via Google Drive and Dropbox. File and font support is also still pretty good.

Read our full Kobo Libra Colour review

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The best budget ereader

The best ereader for 2024: top ebook readers from Kindle, Kobo and more (15)

2. Amazon Kindle (2022)

Best ereader for tight budgets

Specifications

Screen size: 6-inch

Screen type: E Ink Carta 1200

Storage: 16GB

Resolution: 300ppi

Weight: 171g

Front light: Yes

Touchscreen: Yes

Wi-Fi: Yes

Battery life: Up to four weeks

Reasons to buy

+

Well priced

+

Good battery life

+

Much-improved screen

Reasons to avoid

-

6-inch screen can be small for some

-

Lacks grip without case

-

Reliant on Amazon services

Buy it if

✅ You want a compact ereader:At 6 inches, the Kindle can fit into any bag, even a large pocket, so you can take it anywhere.

✅ You're budget-conscious:It might be more expensive than its predecessor, but it's still well priced considering it's got more features than the older model.

Don't buy it if:

❌ You want a larger screen:As portable as it is, you may find a 6-inch screen too small as you could be turning pages frequently, thus eating into the battery life.

❌ You don't want to spend extra on a case:There's not a lot of grip here, which could make this small ereader feel insecure in your hand. A case will help add that grip.

It took Amazon about five years to update the base Kindle model, but what an absolutely fantastic upgrade the 2022 edition is! A different blue color than the usual black is an option and, like the Kobo Clara 2E, is partially made from recycled plastics.

A slight design refresh aside, the screen is way better now than the older Kindle models, with the E Ink Carta 1200 tech adding snappier responses, clarity and, more importantly, a 300ppi resolution (a massive jump from the older 167ppi) that really makes everything on screen pop. The display even supports a dark mode.

However, there's still no way to change light temperature here, and it also misses out on any kind of waterproofing. We also found that the smooth rear panel makes the 2022 Kindle a little insecure in the hand, and you'd likely want a case to get some grip. Plus the 6-inch screen could be too small for anyone who likes the font size on the larger side, which means you're turning pages quite often, eating into the battery life. Still, the small size makes it very portable indeed.

While we think the waterproofing and the additional features of any Kobo ereader make the Clara 2E a more worthwhile option for a small-sized ereader, the Kindle is cheaper in comparison and it would be remiss of us to leave it out of this buying guide.

Read our full Amazon Kindle (2022) review and find out how it compares in our Amazon Kindle (2022) vs Kobo Clara 2E guide

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The best mid-range ereader

The best ereader for 2024: top ebook readers from Kindle, Kobo and more (16)

3. Kobo Clara 2E

The best eco-friendly mid-range ereader

Specifications

Screen size: 6-inch

Screen type: E Ink Carta 1200

Storage: 16GB

Resolution: 300ppi

Weight: 171g

Front light: Yes

Touchscreen: Yes

Wi-Fi: Yes

Battery life: Up to four weeks

Reasons to buy

+

Audiobook support

+

Waterproof

+

Made with recycled plastics

Reasons to avoid

-

Inconsistent battery life

Buy it if

✅ You like eco-friendly products:Environmentally-conscious readers will be glad to know this ereader is made from a lot of recycled plastic, including some that were bound for our oceans.

✅ Features matter to you:It might be another 6-inch ereader, but you get waterproofing, Pocket and OverDrive support, and much more for your money.

Don't buy it if:

❌ You want good battery life:While you can get up to four weeks of battery life between charges, its performance can be a little inconsistent.

The Kobo Clara 2E is a worthy upgrade over its predecessor, the Clara HD, getting the E Ink Carta 1200 screen tech, plus double the internal storage space to 16GB. Where the predecessor had no waterproofing, the 2E carries an IPX8 rating, so you can read in the bath or the pool and not worry too much.

Kobo says the body is made out of recycled plastic, 85% of it to be precise, 10% of which were ocean-bound plastics.It was the first eco-conscious ereader to hit shelves.

Other updates over the older model include the now standard USB-C charging port and Bluetooth connectivity so you can listen to audiobooks (albeit only those purchased from the Kobo Store). All the other usual Kobo perks are here: adjustable light temperature, OverDrive support for library books, wide font and file support, and a very streamlined user interface that makes it easy to navigate through the device's features.

While we found the battery life a little inconsistent, it could just have been teething issues on our review device only, or easily fixable via a firmware update. Overall, though, it's a huge upgrade over the older Clara HD and worth every penny if you're after a very portable and capable ereader that isn't caught up in a closed ecosystem like Amazon's.

Read our full Kobo Clara 2E review

  • ^ Back to the top

The best Kindle

The best ereader for 2024: top ebook readers from Kindle, Kobo and more (17)

4. Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2021)

The best ereader for those within the Amazon ecosystem

Specifications

Screen size: 6.8-inch

Screen type: E ink

Storage: 8GB / 16GB

Resolution: 300ppi

Weight: 205g

Backlight: Yes

Touchscreen: Yes

Wi-Fi: Yes

Battery life: Up to 10 weeks

Reasons to buy

+

Fantastic display

+

Excellent reading experience

Reasons to avoid

-

Dull design

-

Bit pricey

Buy it if

✅ You predominantly source titles from the Kindle Store:If you're already locked into Amazon's ecosystem, the Paperwhite offers a good balance between price and feature set.

✅ Screen size matters:A bright and larger screen means your reading experience is better any time and anywhere.

Don't buy it if:

❌ You have your own collection of ePUBs:While you can sideload the epub file format now to a Kindle, you still have to jump through a hoop or two.

❌ You've got a tight budget:Opting for a smaller screen will save you money and get you similar features too.

We still think the Kindle Paperwhite is the best Kindle you can buy, thanks to its water-resistant design and crisp, bright E Ink display. The basic Kindle 2022 is catching up fast, but the Paperwhite's 6.8-inch display is a great size for reading on as compared to a 6-inch tablet.

We like the adjustable warm light for reading in the dark, and the slim design with a flush screen is appealing and easy to read.

At launch this only had 8GB of storage, but in 2022 Amazon added a 16GB model to the mix, making it all the more desirable. Or you can shell out for the 32GB Paperwhite Signature Edition if you have the cash to spare. The Signature Edition also adds wireless charging, a unique ereader feature. We don't think that's terribly necessary though, so we rate the standard Paperwhite higher once you factor in the price.

Even the standard Paperwhite is a little pricey for a Kindle, but perhaps a refreshed model will see more features added without the price hiking up, thus adding more value for money. Even so, the Paperwhite is an excellent ereader, and our pick of the best Kindle, particularly if you're already embedded in Amazon's ecosystem (aka already subscribed to Kindle Unlimited and Audible).

Read our full Amazon Kindle Paperwhite review

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The best large-screen ereader

The best ereader for 2024: top ebook readers from Kindle, Kobo and more (18)

5. Kobo Elipsa 2E

A large-screen ereader with versatile writing tools

Specifications

Screen size: 10.3-inch

Screen type: E Ink Carta 1200

Storage: 32GB

Resolution: 227ppi

Weight: 390g

Front light: Yes

Touchscreen: Yes

Wi-Fi: Yes

Battery life: up to four weeks

Reasons to buy

+

Very versatile writing tools

+

Excellent handwriting recognition

+

Decent value for money

Reasons to avoid

-

Dated design

-

Sleepcover sold separately

Buy it if

✅ You take a lot of notes or are into journaling:The note-taking features here are par excellence, particularly the Advanced Notebook option, which makes it the perfect replacement for pen and paper.

✅ You want your scribbles exported as typed text: While handwriting recognition is available on other models, Kobo does it well... just as long you're not scribbling badly.

You want a rechargable stylus: Kobo's updated stylus can be charged via USB-C, making it lighter and longer lasting.

Don't buy it if:

❌ Writing is a superfluous feature:Considering its feature set, the Elipsa 2E offers good value for money, but only if you will make full use of its writing capabilities.

❌ Looks matter:It might have great features, but the Elipsa 2E is just another plastic tablet.

If you can't decide between a tablet or an ereader, the Amazon Kindle Scribe might be a tempting option, but Kobo Elipsa 2E wins here for a few simple reasons.

It offers a bit more open ecosystem than a Kindle, with plenty of file and font support, plus the usual Kobo perks of Dropbox connectivity (to transfer your notes and ebooks wirelessly), OverDrive support (to borrow library ebooks) and the baked-in Pocket app to read long-form web articles offline.

And, if you will make full use of its extensive writing tools, there's a lot more value for money here than the Kindle Scribe or the Onyx Boox Note Air series tablets.

Its 10.3-inch screen is great for reading, particularly if you're into comics and graphic novels (albeit displayed in black and white), and an upgraded processor means it's a lot faster and more responsive than its predecessor (we're replacing the original Kobo Elipsa with the new model on our best ereader list for that reason).

Our only gripe with the new Elipsa 2E is that it no longer ships with a sleepcover like the older model did, meaning you're spending a little extra to ensure the redesigned Kobo Stylus 2 – which is also better than the older pen Kobo made – is stowed away securely at all times.

Read our full Kobo Elipsa 2E review

  • ^ Back to the top

The best premium ereader

The best ereader for 2024: top ebook readers from Kindle, Kobo and more (19)

6. Amazon Kindle Scribe

A great ereader for a luxurious reading experience

Specifications

Screen size: 10.3-inch

Screen type: E Ink Carta 1200

Storage: 16GB/32GB/64GB

Resolution: 300ppi

Weight: 433g

Front light: Yes

Touchscreen: Yes

Wi-Fi: Yes

Battery life: Up to six weeks

Reasons to buy

+

Premium reading experience

+

Adjustable backlight

+

Writing capabilities

Reasons to avoid

-

Expensive

-

Mediocre writing features

Buy it if

✅ You want a bright screen:With an ambient light sensor on board, the Scribe's screen is hands-down the best ereader display on the market.

✅ You deal with a lot of MS Word and PDF files:You can edit both Microsoft Word files and PDFs easily, then export back to your computer.

Don't buy it if:

❌ You need a full writing suite:As lovely as the screen is to write on, the Scribe's writing features are comparatively limited.

❌ Money is tight:Getting the best reading experience possible means shelling out a decent chunk of change, especially if you throw in the optional sleepcover too.

If money is no object and you want the most luxurious reading experience a digital ebook reader can give you, then the Amazon Kindle Scribe takes over from the Kindle Oasis. That's because the Oasis is now aging, lacking the speed of the newer, larger model.

The metal body of the Kindle Scribe is reminiscent of the Oasis, but lacks the two page-turn buttons on the larger bezel, but that 10.3-inch screen is just beautiful to read on. Admittedly it's not quite as portable and can feel heavy when held in one hand, it's still marvelous to use... and write on.

Yes, like the Kobo Elipsa 2E, the Scribe ships with a stylus for writing and drawing. At launch, its writing capabilities were very limited, but Amazon has slowly but steadily been expanding its flagship ereader's features, so much so that you can actually read Microsoft Word documents on it. Signing on documents in PDF format is a breeze – just email it to your associated Kindle email address. And the stylus glides beautifully over that bright screen – it's hands-down the best writing experience according to our review. That said, we'd still recommend the Kobo Elipsa 2E as the better writing tablet because of its Advanced Notebook feature.

No matter how wonderful the writing experience and how great it is to read on, the Scribe is expensive. So you could still opt for the Kindle Oasis for a premium reading experience if your main criteria is digital reading and portability, but there's no getting away from the fact that the large screen has some serious oomph.

Read our full Amazon Kindle Scribe review

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The best color ereader

The best ereader for 2024: top ebook readers from Kindle, Kobo and more (20)

7. Kobo Clara Colour

An affordable and compact color ereader

Specifications

Screen size: 6-inch

Screen type: E Ink Kaleido 3

Storage: 16GB

Resolution: 150ppi color; 300ppi grayscale

Weight: 174g

Frontlight: Yes

Bluetooth: Yes

Battery life: up to four weeks

Reasons to buy

+

Color screen in a compact tablet

+

Peppy performance

+

Good battery life

Reasons to avoid

-

Screen size can be small for some

-

Black-and-white text lacks contrast

Buy it if

✅ You want an affordable color ereader: Arguably cheaper than any other color ereader out there, the Clara Colour is making color content more accessible.

✅ You want to borrow library books:Whether ebooks or digital magazines, if your local public library supports OverDrive, you can save money by borrowing titles.

Don't buy it if:

❌ You want a stylus:This is an entry-level ereader, with no writing features.

You need a larger screen:A 6-inch display isn't for everyone. If you think you need more screen real estate, opt for a 7-inch ereader instead.

When it comes to color ereaders, it's hard to recommend any particular one as the displayed colors on all of them look slightly washed out. That's not the fault of the ereader; that's just the tech. However, if you ask us, we'd pick the Kobo Clara Colour as arguably the cheapest mainstream color ereader available right now.

While the 6-inch color display may not be ideal for comics or graphic novels, it's still a good entry point to making color content accessible. In fact, we think it would be a good first ereader for someone looking to get started with digital reading. Sure, there are cheaper grayscale options available, but something has got be said about seeing a book cover displayed in color on an ereader.

And, as a Kobo ereader, it's got a lot more going for it with a relatively more open ecosystem than Amazon's Kindle, plus good file and font support. 16GB of onboard storage, Bluetooth connectivity to pair wireless headphones for audiobook enjoyment and IPX8 waterproofing rounds up its other important features.

Importantly, it gets an upgraded processor that improves performance over the Clara 2E and the Kindle base model significantly.

Like the Libra Colour (listed above) it was launched alongside, the Clara Colour has also been made with recycled plastic and comes in fully recycled and recyclable packing.It's also supposed to be repairable but we're still waiting on confirmation on how exactly Kobo's new partnership with iFixit will work.

Read our in-depth Kobo Clara Colour review

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The best compact ereader

The best ereader for 2024: top ebook readers from Kindle, Kobo and more (21)

8. Onyx Boox Palma

A compact ereader that's one of a kind

Specifications

Screen size: 6.13-inch

Screen type: E Ink Carta 1200

Storage: 128GB

Resolution: 300ppi

Weight: 170g

Frontlight: Yes

Bluetooth: Yes

Battery life: up to eight weeks

Reasons to buy

+

Compact, lightweight design

+

Excellent battery life

+

Good graphics

Reasons to avoid

-

No stylus support

-

Rear camera not great at scanning

-

Pricey

Buy it if

✅ You want a phone-sized ereader: The only e-paper device to mimic the look and size of a phone, the Palma easily slips into a pocket.

✅ You want access to Android apps:From reading apps to mobile games, you get full access to the Google Play Store as the device runs Android 11.

Don't buy it if:

❌ You want a stylus:This is an entry-level ereader, with no writing features.

You need a larger screen:A 6.13-inch display with a 2:1 aspect ratio isn't for everyone.

You want something cheaper: Being an unique device and boasting a lot of features makes this a rather expensive – and novel – purchase.

The Onyx Boox Palma is a unique device that can easily be mistaken for a phone. Except it won't make any calls and it's got an e-paper screen. It's even lighter than some of the phones it mimics, making it the perfect device for anyone looking to move away from reading on an LCD or OLED screen to a more comfortable E Ink display.

It also has a lot of onboard storage, but if 128GB isn't enough for you, there's also a microSD tray to expand the capacity. That means you can load up thousands of ebooks, several audiobooks, music files (yes, there's a player app built in) and anything else you can think of to take on your travels without affecting your baggage allowance. It lacks waterproofing, though.

Like any phone today, there's a built-in speaker and, also like a phone, it sounds better if you use the Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity to pair wireless headphones to enjoy your music and audiobooks.

Running a fat-free version of Android 11, the Palma gets you access to the Play Store and, with a pretty powerful CPU and decent graphics, you can actually play some mobile games – it really is impressive how well the screen handles graphics... albeit in black and white only.

There really is a lot to recommend the Palma, but it would have been a better device if Onyx had added stylus support too. It would also make it easier to justify the high price tag as there are 6-inch ereaders that are a lot cheaper than it. However, there's nothing quite like it on the market and that alone could be justification enough for some users.

Read our in-depth Onyx Boox Palma review

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The best durable ereader

The best ereader for 2024: top ebook readers from Kindle, Kobo and more (22)

9. PocketBook Era

Anti-scratch screen protection found right here

Specifications

Screen size: 7-inch

Screen type: Carta 1200

Storage: 16/64GB

Resolution: 300ppi

Weight: 228g

Front light: Yes

Touchscreen: Yes

Wi-Fi: Yes

Battery life: up to eight weeks

Reasons to buy

+

Great display

+

Excellent battery life

Reasons to avoid

-

Available in Europe only

-

Low on-screen contrast

Buy it if

✅ You want a good-looking ereader:With cut-off corners and a metallic trim, the Era is a fine-looking tablet with a design that no other brand can offer.

✅ You don't want to spend on a case:Sleepcovers can protect your screen from scratches, but this ereader allows you to save that little bit of money.

You don't like wearing headphones:There's a built-in speaker that can be useful for listening to audiobooks without pairing a set of Bluetooth headphones.

Don't buy it if:

❌ You live outside of the European Union:Purchasing content from the device is difficult if you live outside of select European countries, so you will need to source your books from elsewhere and sideload.

❌ You want a streamlined UX:PocketBook's user interface can be a little clunky if you've experienced setups on other ereaders before.

The PocketBook Era is our favourite ereader from the brand. It looks gorgeous and far nicer than other ereaders. And although it feels heavier than other 7-inch ereaders, the weight is well-distributed. The display looks good with an additional layer on the latest E Ink Carta 1200 display also adding scratch-resistance to its IPX8 waterproofing. Low on-screen contrast is a downside but you learn to live with it and, honestly, it won't bother you for the most part.

Elsewhere, the PocketBook Era has a built-in speaker that you'll probably rarely use, although Bluetooth connectivity will let you pair a set of wireless headphones if you're listening to audiobooks (or music – yes, you can load it up with MP3 files but this takes up a lot of storage). We're big fans of its long-lasting battery life, although decent performance is mildly hampered by a clunky interface.

There are four physical buttons on this device, sitting right at the edge of the larger bezel, and they're snappy enough to work well. However, the positioning of the buttons can be a little tiring on the fingers when used one-handed.

Its unique chassis shape and metallic trim make PocketBook Era an attractive ereader, even if it's flawed, and it would be remiss of us to not include it here as an alternate to the likes of the Kobo Libra 2 or the Kindle Oasis.

Read our full PocketBook Era review

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The best ereader for kids

The best ereader for 2024: top ebook readers from Kindle, Kobo and more (23)

10. Kobo Nia

A small, affordable ereader for small readers

Specifications

Screen size: 6-inch

Screen type: Carta HD

Storage: 8GB

Resolution: 212ppi

Weight: 172g

Front light: Yes

Touchscreen: Yes

Wi-Fi: Yes

Battery life: up to four weeks

Reasons to buy

+

Small, portable and affordable

+

Good screen

Reasons to avoid

-

Lacks waterproofing

-

Older screen technology

Buy it if

✅ Affordability is important:It's one of the cheapest ereaders on the market today.

✅ You live outside the US:Considering the Kindle Paperwhite Kids can be purchased in some markets and will allow you to borrow books from an American library, the Nia is the better choice where the Amazon option isn't available.

Don't buy it if:

❌ Waterproofing is important:Accidents can happen and if you think that's a big possibility with your kids, you might want to get an ereader with an IPX8 rating.

It might be getting a little long in the tooth now but the Kobo Nia is a good option if you want your kids to get into digital reading. While Amazon has a Kindle designed specifically for kids, our pick goes to the Kobo as it's more widely available. Moreover, like with any Kobo ereader, the option to borrow library books is built in, as long your local public library has OverDrive support.

With Amazon having replaced its base Kindle model in 2022 with a more expensive (but improved) upgrade, it makes the Kobo Nia one of the more affordable ereaders on the market today.

That said, the Nia isn't as full featured as new ereaders. It lacks waterproofing, which could be an important consideration if you're shopping for your kids (you could opt for the Kobo Clara 2E if this is important), and there's no Bluetooth support for audiobooks.

It also has older screen technology, but don't hold that against it. It still boasts a decent 212ppi resolution with good contrast, so text is clear. And, if you'd like to get your kids access to Kobo Plus, that can be done directly from the device itself as well.

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The best Android ereader

The best ereader for 2024: top ebook readers from Kindle, Kobo and more (24)

11. Onyx Boox Tab Mini C

An all-round Android ereader that does it all

Specifications

Screen size: 7.8-inch

Screen type: E Ink Kaleido 3

Storage: 64GB

Resolution: 300ppi (B&W); 150ppi (color)

Weight: 310g

Front light: Yes

Touchscreen: Yes

Wi-Fi: Yes

Battery life: up to eight weeks

Reasons to buy

+

Excellent contrast

+

Full-featured writing tablet

+

Access to Google Play Store

Reasons to avoid

-

Colors slightly muted

-

Heavy device

-

Stylus doesn't secure strongly

Buy it if

✅ You read a lot of comics and graphic novels:Sometimes you really just need a color screen to appreciate a particular title.

✅ You want access to the Google Play Store: Running Android 11, you can download apps from the Google Store, including mobile games and other reading applications.

Note taking is important to you: It might be overkill but Onyx's note-taking native app is arguably the most full-featured option available.

Don't buy it if:

❌ You want an easy-to-use interface:There's a plethora of customizations available here and that can get overwhelming.

You already own a multimedia tablet:Fans of comics and graphic novels who already own an iPad or a Samsung Galaxy Tab won't enjoy a color ereader as much.

With a color screen, stylus support and running slimmed-down version of (the now dated) Android 11, there's a lot going on with the Onyx Boox Tab Mini C. But it's the operating system that makes it easy to recommend. Not only does it come with some decent native apps for reading, note-taking and browsing the internet, you can download any Android app you deem useful onto the device. This includes YouTube if you want to watch videos... in black and white and looking like the moving pictures from a newspaper in the Harry Potter movie franchise.

You can always download the Kindle or Kobo app to read your existing library if you already have one, or opt to use any note-taking application you might like.

The 7.8-inch display is a good size for comics and graphic novels, although the device itself is rather heavy to hold for long reading sessions. And it gets heavier if you opt to use a sleepcover for it, which you will need to ensure the stylus is securely stuck to the side of the tablet as the magnet isn't very strong.

The weight, though, is mostly due to the 5,000mAh battery pack that gives you 8-10 weeks of use on a single charge – that's a lot! Even when multitasking with it, the battery performance is quite impressive.

The one thing to note here is that because of its larger screen size compared to the two other color ereaders on this list, the pixel density is lower, meaning the colors appear less saturated. If you already own a multi-media tablet like an iPad or a Samsung Galaxy Tab, you're better off using those instead if saturated colors are important to you.

There's even built-in speakers here, so you can listen to music – there's a native player here too – or audiobooks. The sound quality isn't great, but there aren't too many ebook reading tablets with speakers.

As good as the Tab Mini C is as an e-paper tablet, it is expensive and not widely available, which is a real shame. But we appreciate how wonderful the contrast on screen is, making it a pleasure to read, even in the brightest of sunlight.

Read our in-depthOnyx Boox Tab Mini C review

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Ereader FAQs

What is an ereader?

It might look like a boring tablet, but an ereader is designed specifically only for digital versions of books, whether novels or comics, fiction or non-fiction. All ereaders – also called ebook readers – use a special display that makes reading in any kind of ambient lighting condition easy. These displays have a look that resembles the texture of paper (not the feel), and that's easy on the eyes.

Since they perform only a single task – display ebooks – they don't use powerful processors and can be slow to refresh. However, this doesn't affect the performance of an ereader and, in fact, allows the battery life to go on for weeks on a single charge.

An ereader typically comes with 8GB of storage, if not more, and can store hundreds of titles. That means you can carry your entire library with you on holiday.

Do you really need an ereader?

Whether you need a dedicated ereader will depend on how much you read books and whether you're comfortable spending the extra money on a reading device. If you're an avid reader and keep buying new titles, you'll find that going digital can help you save on storage space for your books as well as save you money in the long run as ebooks are typically cheaper than the printed versions. Admittedly you'll be spending a decent chunk of change on the ereader itself, but you'll find that it pays for itself soon enough. Moreover, some ereaders allow you to borrow library books, which can save you even more.

And if you have the habit of reading during your morning commute, an ereader is a lot lighter than carrying an actual book.

It can be argued that reading on your phone or tablet is just as good, and while that's true for the most part, the e-paper screen on an ereader is designed to reduce eye strain. So if you read a lot before bed, it's definitely worth considering an ereader, particularly one that allows you to adjust its frontlight's temperature to warmer hues.

Kindle vs Kobo: what is the difference?

While the devices themselves are largely similar, there are a few differences between Kindles and Kobo ereaders. For starters, the former is widely available in any market Amazon operates in, but Kindles can lock you into Amazon's ecosystem by pushing you to purchase titles only from the Kindle Store.

Kobo also has its own bookstore accessible via its ereaders, but the ecosystem is a lot more open and sideloading books you already own is a lot easier. Kobo's file support is wider, as is its font support. In fact, you can even sideload Amazon's dedicated fonts like Bookerly and Ember if you prefer them.

Then there's borrowing library books – while both devices give you that option, Kindle users can only do so if they live in the US. If you happen to reside elsewhere, you might want to consider a Kobo, provided your local library has OverDrive support (you can ask them before you decide to buy an ereader).

Kobo devices are typically a little more expensive, but then you also get more device choices from the Japanese-Canadian ereader brand. And if you're after a note-taking device, we think Kobo is the way to go.

Find out more about how to choose between a Kindle and a Kobo ereader.

Kindle vs Kobo: which one should you buy?

Pretty much everything about the two platforms is competitive, including pricing, so the choice of device ultimately rests on where you live and how you plan on getting your books.

If you plan on buying books from the device maker's service, both are great. We like the Kobo hardware and software a bit better here at TechRadar, but the Amazon Kindle Store is much larger.

If you'd like to borrow free books from your library, the Kobo is the better choice for more regions. Kindle devices can borrow from public libraries, but that service only works in the US currently. Kobo devices can borrow in the US, Canada, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Singapore (be sure to check with the library of choice first though).

Moreover, at the time of writing, there are more Kobo models to choose from than Kindle, although there's no arguing that the latter is, hands down, the most popular brand and is synonymous with the word 'ereader'.

Which ereader is better for library books?

If your main source of reading material would ebooks from your local library, then it's best to opt for a Kindle or a Kobo device. Both with allow you to access your local library's ebook catalogue from anywhere (as long as you are connected to a Wi-Fi network), but keep in mind that Kindles only support borrowing from American libraries. If you live outside of the US, a Kobo would be a better option.

Kobo devices work with the OverDrive service that lets you borrow in regions including the US, UK, Australia, New Zealand and Singapore (amongst others). If you want to own your books, the Amazon marketplace is much larger than Kobo, and has a huge self-publishing component for finding independent authors.

Can I listen to audiobooks on an ereader?

As long as an ereader has Bluetooth connectivity, you should be able to pair a set of wireless headphones to listen to supported audio files. While brands like Onyx and PocketBook will allow you to sideload audio files, including audiobooks, Kindle and Kobo devices only support those purchased from their respective stores.

In fact, some Onyx and PocketBook ereaders have built-in speakers, so you may not even need headphones to listen. However, don't expect great sound quality from them because, like your phone, they're small drivers and the sound would be better via a connected pair of headphones.

Also keep in mind that audio files are typically larger than ebook formats, so if you're storing a lot of these on your device, you'll need to keep an eye on how much space you've got left.

What fonts can my ereader support?

Most ereaders will support some basic fonts natively and you won't need to tinker with them at all. However, if you do want to change things up, a Kindle or a Kobo is a good idea as they both make it easy to change fonts on the device.

You'll find that the Kindles have some custom fonts designed by Amazon, with Bookerly and Ember being the most popular ones. We found that the list of fonts on Kindles is extensive enough that we didn't find the need to sideload more, but you can if you need to.

Kobo devices also have their own set of default fonts, but there's no rule against sideloading more, including Amazon's own custom ones like Bookerly. And sideloading is as easy as plugging your Kobo ereader into a computer and moving your desired font to the device's fonts folder.

What is the difference between an ereader and a tablet?

If you already own a tablet – whether an iPad or an Android – do you really need another device for reading digital books? An ereader has limitations, but for reading it can be far superior to a more extensible tablet.

1. E Ink technology
The main difference between an ereader and an iPad you will notice immediately. The ereader screen is almost always grayscale, using special E Ink technology that is very crisp and specialized for fonts and text. It refreshes relatively slowly and it sometimes leaves a trace (ghosting) that needs to be refreshed.

E-ink screens also don't flicker like a normal screen, making it more comfortable to read for a longer period of time.

2. Battery life
While you might hope to get a day of use out of your iPad, an ereader tablet measures battery life in weeks. Because the screen only refreshes when you turn the page, it draws very little power. Our favorite ereaders have a backlit screen, but those LED lights don't use much battery. If you read for 30 minutes a day or so, you can get a few months of battery life with our top pick devices.

3. Blue light filter
While dark mode has become quite common in recent times and many modern electronic screens automatically adjust their displays depending on ambient lighting, there's no filter to reduce blue light. The best ereaders, however, use front lights with a white to yellow hue that's better for the eyes (and your sleep pattern) as compared to phones and tablets.

4. Affordable and convenient
If you are mostly reading books, an ereader tablet is a bargain over an iPad. The base model Amazon Kindle 2022 is a bare fraction of the price of an iPad or a Samsung Galaxy Tab, while large-screen ereaders like the Kindle Scribe and Kobo Elipsa can be had for an equivalent price or for not that much more than a base model iPad (depending on where you live). If books are your main thing, stick with an ereader and save money versus a tablet.

How we test the best ereaders

There might be ereaders aplenty in some markets, but not all of them are available extensively. So our first step in testing an ereader is to determine whether it can be purchased by a wider audience than just a single market, even if it's an import.

If an E Ink tablet meets that criteria, we then test ereaders based on the display and specs – aka the responsiveness of the touchscreen as well as clarity, plus things like storage and Bluetooth connectivity. This, in combination with its price tag, will determine its value-for-money rating, which is quite important in our books.

We follow that up with how user-friendly the interface is and whether there's easy access to ebooks and audiobooks via a native store or third-party apps. We also take into consideration file support for each device, which is necessary if you already have an existing library of digital books.

With several years under the belt in testing ereaders in all shapes and sizes, we're confident that our star-rated reviews are the best indication of quality and usefulness of the ereaders in this list. There are no sales/marketing teams involved in our verdicts, which means if we don't like it, we simply won't recommend it.

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The best ereader for 2024: top ebook readers from Kindle, Kobo and more (25)

Sharmishta Sarkar

Managing Editor (APAC)

While she's happiest with a camera in her hand, Sharmishta's main priority is being TechRadar's APAC Managing Editor, looking after the day-to-day functioning of the Australian, New Zealand and Singapore editions of the site, steering everything from news and reviews to ecommerce content like deals and coupon codes. While she loves reviewing cameras and lenses when she can, she's also an avid reader and has become quite the expert on ereaders and E Ink writing tablets, having appeared on Singaporean radio to talk about these underrated devices. Other than her duties at TechRadar, she's also the Managing Editor of the Australian edition of Digital Camera World, and writes for Tom's Guide and T3.

With contributions from

  • Philip BerneUS Mobiles Editor

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