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What Will Suit You Best – eReader, Tablet or a Combo Package?

So you’re looking for an eReader, and you’re coming across a massive amount of options. You might find yourself wondering – “Wait, what’s the difference between an eReader vs a Tablet PC and what the heck is an eReader Tablet?” Hopefully we can break it down for you so you can better understand the many options out there.

Briefly, tablets are flat, LCD touch-screen computers, an eReader is a device that uses technology like ePaper, or E-ink to display books, magazines and other text-based content, while an eReader tablet is a device that does a bit of both.


Tablets are essentially small, flat, touch-screen computers without a traditional keyboard. You can install a ton of apps on them, and included within those apps are often some sort of eReading app. The most well known of this bunch is probably the iPad, and it’s app – iBooks. You can also install Amazon’s Kindle app on an iPad, but wait – Kindle is also the name of Amazon’s eReader and tablet line. Now you can see how this can get really confusing. The important features that set these devices apart from eReaders are their color LCD screens, ability to install multiple apps, and what is probably the most relevant – they don’t have ePaper screens. Popular examples are Apple’s iPad, Amazon’s Kindle Fire and Barnes and Noble’s Nook Color.

Now, some might consider the Kindle Fire and Nook Color “eReader Tablets” since they are primarily considered eReaders with tablet capabilities and in case you’re looking for an Android eReader tablet, both the Kindle and Nook run on some version of the Android OS.


If you’re like me, you prefer a device that is strictly an eReader. These devices utilize a technology called “E-paper” and/or “E Ink” which better resembles the reading experience of reading text on paper. This technology doesn’t require backlighting, which makes it more comfortable to read and allows your battery to last longer. When you do a ton of reading, this can really make a difference which is why I prefer true eReaders.

The most popular models in the eReader category are Amazon’s Kindle and Kindle Paperwhite, and Barnes and Noble’s Simple Touch and Simple Touch with Glowlight. The latter in both categories have built-in lighting with the Kindle Paperwhite being backlit while the Simple Touch with Glowlight uses a front-lighting method. The lighting isn’t necessary, but it’s very handy to have in low lighting conditions. When the light is on, obviously it can affect that “reading real paper” feel, but when it’s off you don’t even notice it.

One final thing to note is that eReaders tend to have a much longer battery life than tablets. This is because LCDs require a significant amount of batter power to operate, while the operation of E-paper screens is a pretty low-power affair. Even with backlighting, eReaders boast significantly longer battery life than tablets.

So what is the best eReader, tablet or eReader tablet? If you’re looking for the best device to read tons of eBooks on, I would go with one of the lighting capable eReaders with my preference leaning towards the Amazon Kindle Paperwhite.

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