Should You Choose an E-Ink Reader or Tablet Computer

There are a few choices when it comes to e-book readers, and knowing the differences can help you choose which is right for your needs and budget. Consider what you will use your device for and how much you can afford to spend.

If you are an avid book reader that simply wants to be able to read your favorite books in black and white then you may want to choose an e-ink reader. These are basic e-book readers that are very similar to reading a printed book or newspaper. They do not have color (LCD) screens, basic e-ink readers are lighter in weight and are dedicated to reading; some models now have touch screens too.

One advantage of the e-ink reader is that you can read in sunlight, so you can enjoy your favorite book on the patio, by the pool or at the park. A slight downside, you will need to buy an e-book light if you want to read in dim light because this type of e-reader is not back-lit. But if all you are looking for is a portable device that allows you to enjoy reading electronic books and newspapers this may be right for you.

Next, you need to consider which version is best WiFi or 3G. If you are an avid book reader that wants to access and download books to read then WiFi is an affordable choice that will get the job done.

Should I Buy a Tablet Computer for an E-Reader

That depends on whether or not you want to read only, or surf the Internet and more. Do you want audio, videos and email access? Then you may find that a full featured tablet computer is the better choice for your needs. Tablets have many features, so you will need to know what you are looking for in an e-reader.  For example, will a WiFi model suffice or will you need 3G access.  What is the difference?

A WiFi e-reader or tablet may be a more affordable choice, but you won't be able to access the Internet or download books unless you are near a hot spot; within WiFi range. On the other hand if you need access to the Internet at all times no matter where you are then you may find that a 3G model suits you best.

 5 Things to Consider When Choosing an E-Reader

What will the device be used for? You need to think about the main purpose, will it be for reading only or will you use it for e-mailing, texting, watching movies, listening to music and surfing the Internet.

Which type of screen is best for my needs LCD or e-ink? LCD screens may cause eye strain if you read for long periods, so you should consider how often and how long you like to read. Also, think about where you will do most of your reading. LCD screens are nearly impossible to see in sunlight, will you be reading in daylight often?

How heavy will the e-reader be? Size and weight matter because you normally hold an e-reader in your hands while reading.

Should you opt for the 3G or WiFi? Think about why you need access to the Internet, and consider whether or not you can afford the added benefits of 3G access. Be sure you know the difference in cost and benefits verses WiFi before you decide.

Are you buying an e-reader that meets your needs or choosing the latest tablet because it's popular? It is easy to get caught up in trends, focus on your needs and budget.

What do you need and expect from and e-reader? If you are an avid book reader that just wants a digital book reader, in my opinion, e-ink readers are perfect. Maybe you are a casual reader who wants the features and benefits of a tablet computer combined with an e-reader. Do some research if you are not sure about the differences between the two before you make a decision.