Best ebook readers for 2020

You’ll be able to readily learn ebooks in your smartphone or pill with the Kindle, Kobo, Nook or Apple Books app (to call however just a few), however many individuals desire to do their digital studying on an book reader. Firstly, these devoted units are free from the distractions of e mail, social media, the web and different leisure choices. Even higher, since book readers use E Ink digital paper expertise, they’ve nice battery life and — in contrast to tablets and smartphones — their shows do not get washed out in direct daylight, so that they’re good for studying on the seaside or by the pool. Many more moderen fashions are water resistant, too. 

Listed below are our present high picks, all of which have self-illuminated screens. The checklist is dominated by Amazon Kindle merchandise as a result of we expect that is nonetheless the most effective digital “ecosystem” for studying, with loads of finances and subscription guide choices, too. And whereas Barnes & Noble nonetheless makes its Nook reader, we propose anybody who desires to avoid Amazon as a substitute go for a Kobo mannequin. 

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When you’re purchasing for somebody who’s on the lookout for a devoted e-reader, the Paperwhite is the Goldilocks in Amazon’s line and our present CNET Editors’ Alternative within the class:

  • It is 10% thinner and lighter than the earlier model.
  • It has a “flush-front” design with a again made from a softer, grippy materials as a substitute of onerous plastic. 
  • It is absolutely waterproof, just like the high-end Kindle Oasis, and has a plastic display screen that Amazon says is shatter- and scratch-resistant.
  • It has built-in Bluetooth, so you possibly can obtain Amazon Audible audiobooks and hearken to them with wi-fi headphones.

Whereas it lists for $130, it often will get discounted to $90 (and generally even $85), which is when you can purchase it. It is possible that Amazon will replace the Paperwhite in 2020, nevertheless it’s unclear when or how a lot of an improve will probably be. As an example, USB-C charging could possibly be added and maybe the lighting scheme could possibly be up to date, however we would not anticipate any dramatic upgrades.

Learn our Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2018) overview.

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The Kindle Oasis, Amazon’s top-of-the-line E Ink e-reader, was barely up to date in 2019 — nevertheless it’s mainly equivalent to the earlier Kindle Oasis aside from one key distinction: It has a brand new color-adjustable built-in gentle that permits you to customise the colour tone from cool to heat, relying on whether or not you are studying in the course of the day or at night time. You may as well schedule the display screen heat to replace routinely with dawn and sundown — not in contrast to Evening Shift mode on Apple units.

At $250, the Oasis is definitely costly for an e-reader. Most individuals can be pleased with the extra reasonably priced Paperwhite, however if you need the most effective of the most effective — and do not thoughts paying a premium for it — the Oasis is arguably it with regards to book readers. The Kobo Forma, which additionally sells for $250, does have an even bigger Eight-inch display screen in comparison with the Oasis’ 7-incher.

Learn our Amazon Kindle Oasis (2019) overview.

Sarah Tew/CNET

The most recent iteration of Amazon’s entry-level book reader, which Amazon merely calls the Kindle, now has a self-illuminated display screen and an upgraded design. At $90, it does value $10 greater than the earlier mannequin, the Kindle 2016, however this one often goes on sale for as little as $60. We desire the Kindle Paperwhite, which has a better decision show (textual content and pictures seem a bit sharper), is waterproof and has a barely higher lighting scheme. However if you happen to do not wish to spend a lot for an e-reader, the usual Kindle is an efficient possibility, particularly when it is discounted.

Learn our Amazon Kindle (2019) overview.


Rakuten makes a line of Kobo e-readers that aren’t solely powered by the Kobo book retailer but additionally help 14 file codecs natively (EPUB, EPUB3, PDF, MOBI, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP, TIFF, TXT, HTML, RTF, CBZ and CBR). In different phrases, if you happen to get your ebooks — or some other digital paperwork — from anywhere apart from Amazon, this machine will in all probability learn them. In fact, Kobo has its personal ebook store, too — and it has built-in help for trying out ebooks from native libraries by way of the OverDrive service, too. (You will get library books onto Kindles by way of OverDrive’s Libby app, nevertheless it’s not as clean of a course of.)

The Kobo Libra H20, which retails for $170, sits in the midst of the road and, as its identify implies, it is absolutely waterproof. It has a 7-inch HD (1,680×1,264 decision) E Ink show, a built-in gentle and no adverts (you need to pay $20 to take away them from Kindle units). 

Accessible in black or white, you need to use the machine in portrait or panorama mode. Different Kobo choices embrace the Clara HD ($120) and the flagship Kobo Forma ($250), which has a bigger Eight-inch display screen. 

Learn extra: Kindle Paperwhite vs. Kindle Oasis

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