iPad and eBooks (convincing parents:D)

Discussion in 'iPad' started by AJ.G, Jun 15, 2011.

  1. AJ.G macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2010
    Location:
    Beijing.
    #1
    Hello Macrumors! LOng time no post....

    The family wants to get an iPad for this summer. Well an ebook ereader to read books on the plane and everything. I researched into the kindle amd everything, and whilst it has a nice screen and endless battery (?), it still remains a pretty shoddy device in terms of usability.
    I explained this to my parents like this:
    The kindle costs 900 kuai, amd for that u get two features, the shop, and reading interface. But you still needa pay for the books and everything
    The iPad costs 4000 kuai (which at first seems like a lot more) but then wjen you realise how many features you get it comes down to almost half a mao per feature.

    My parents understood my argument and said "okay, but how good of an ereader is it?"

    So i came here to gather opinions, experiences, and hopefully answers.
    Excuse the long introduxtion and any typos (on iPod).
    **FYI kuai is slang for RMB- 1USD=roughly 6.8RMB, and one mao is a tenth of an RMB (u do the math:D) ** and yes, the ipad is more expensive in china.

    So the questions:

    1. Is the iPad a good ereader? Most of the reading will be done on the plane so glare isnt am issue? And if it is we'll get a protector...
    2. What are some of the best ways to get books onto the ipad?
    3. For the above, how big (in size, mb...?) is each book, how much would it cost, and do you find it to be a practical way.

    Those are my main questions for now.
    A few pointers,
    *most of the reading will be done by my 8 year old brother, so kids books...
    *we aiming to come to a decision by next week as we leave in two weeks for the holidays
    *feel free to share any experiences, pointers, or whatnot about ereading experiences on the ipad, kindle, or any other devices you may enjoy ereading on
    *and lastly, again, sorry about any typos/txt language, im on my ipod touch so im not really paying attention.

    Thanks for all amd any help, all the best,

    AJ--
     
  2. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    Jul 24, 2006
    Location:
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    #2
    If you want an e-reader, the Kindle is just fine. I don't know where you're getting these "usability" issues. It's just as usable as the iPad.
     
  3. AJ.G thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2010
    Location:
    Beijing.
    #3
    Well many of the reviews ad such said the interface wasnt very good, some even called it "awkward." that what i meant...
     
  4. AreYouIn? macrumors 6502a

    AreYouIn?

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    Jun 9, 2009
    #4
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8J2 Safari/6533.18.5)

    I bought the iPad just for books. I haven't received it yet but I love reading on my iPhone. And the kids books also have interactive things sometimes. Color pictures and things of that sort are also nice.
     
  5. taipan61 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 18, 2011
    Location:
    corner starbucks
    #5
    a couple of personal experiences with both devices,
    use calibre to edit and transfer to either device (directly to kindle and through iTunes)
    as a read only device the kindle is easier on the eyes and lighter and i find i can read longer with it vs the iPad
    that being said i use the iPad on business trips, at work, for relaxing, etc, as it is more versatile with the iBook, kindle, nook, and other book reading apps
    if all you want is a ebook reader than get the kindle or other ebook reader, if you want a versatile tool, toy, gizmo then get the iPad, either way you will generally still have to pay for your books on both devices
     
  6. spiderman0616 macrumors 68030

    spiderman0616

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2010
    #6
    The thing I do most on my iPad is read iBooks, and that's mostly what I bought it for. It's the same old story--a standalone device for a specific use is better at that specific use than a "do it all" type of device. For example, a standalone camera is usually going to be better for taking pictures than a phone camera, but who wants to carry around a camera all the time?

    For me, the iPad's screen is great for reading and doesn't bother my eyes at all. I used to read all the time on my iPhone but I started getting a sore neck from it because there's no real comfortable way for me to do that on the train. Plus, kids books and magazines are absolutely FANTASTIC on the iPad. My son's face just lights up when he sees me getting out the iPad to read him a story. He just loves it.
     
  7. radiogoober macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 7, 2011
  8. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2008
    #8
    I tried my boss' kindle once, and I was very irritated by having to use the arrow keys to navigate the menu system. After being used to iOS' "just tap the screen" system, arrow buttons just felt so slow and clumsy, it felt downright barbaric. :D

    Also, kindle is only black and white. If you are interested in children's books, they are generally better on the iPad, because you get color.

    BTW, not sure how buying ebooks from Amazon or iBooks store works in China. Do you have an US iTunes/Amazon account, or are you going to be just using a Chinese account? If you have access to the US ebook stores, then there's a huge variety of ebooks avaiable, but if you are just buying what's avaiable in China, I have no idea how big a selection you'll have access to.

    Oh, and if you get an iPad, you can download the Kindle app, and buy and read ebooks from Amazon. That's another reason to go with the iPad, you are not just tied to books from one ebook seller.
     
  9. r-sky macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2010
    #9
    I agree with all spiderman0616 says here! My subway commute is almost two hours a day and I read books on my iPad the entire time. I do not find that I get tired from it or glare being an issue. (I used to read paper books for my commute and found the iPad is soooo much easier!) All the issues of purchasing and such are there, but lately my local library has begun to allow us to check out e-books for the iPad and that's been great on my wallet. In addition, when I travel, I load up movies and such to watch on the plane, games to play when I am bored, etc. I was initally torn between an e-reader device and the iPad, price being a big issue, but am now so very glad I elected to get the iPad!
     
  10. NebulaClash macrumors 68000

    NebulaClash

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2010
    #10
    I have now read over 200 novels on my iPad using iBooks, and it's a great, great experience. I have given an iPad to both of my parents, and each say they love reading in iBooks too. That said, there are folks who say they prefer the look of the Kindle for reading, and there are other folks who feel the opposite. How will your parents react to the screen? It's hard to predict.

    But the 8-year-old will love, love, love the iPad beyond reason. So my suggestion is to get the iPad, let your parents read on it and see if their eyes like the process. If not, return it and try the Kindle. But do NOT let the 8-year-old see the iPad or else you're never going to return it :)
     
  11. Sanveann macrumors 6502

    Sanveann

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2009
    Location:
    Michigan
    #11
    I have both and honestly prefer to read books on the Kindle. I don't find the user interface awkward or annoying whatsoever. I can read books on the iPad, certainly, but I don't find it as easy on my eyes as the Kindle is, by a long shot.

    That said, it also depends on what kind of books your brother is reading. Is he going to want to read interactive stuff, or is he more into regular books, like, say "Harry Potter"?
     
  12. jonhcox macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2010
    #12
    This. My use mirrors this and my son loves to use the interactive books on it.
     
  13. jddar, Jun 15, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2011

    jddar macrumors regular

    jddar

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2009
    #13
    Sorry for the bad news, none of the "Harry Potter" novels are yet available on any legitimate/legal e-book store. I wish they were. Even though I own hardback versions of all seven, I'd still buy them again from the iBook Store.

    By any measument, I read a lot. I absolutely love reading on my iPad 2. I haven't read a printed on paper book since getting my iPad last March. I've used a friends Kindle and wasn't that impressed. With all those little buttons, it's just too fiddly for my taste. Plus, you can do so very much more with an iPad.

    Frankly, since getting the iPad, I've only started up my old Windows laptop twice and that was only to sync my iPad. The iPad has sort of been a life altering gadget for me. I've discovered that I no longer really need a traditional "computer" or paper books.
     
  14. AceCoolie macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2009
    #14
    For reading, both the kindle and nook are better...but not by much. Reading on the iPad is still great and what makes it even better is the variety. You can read kindle books, nook books, iBooks, library books via the Overdrive apps, plus all the fee formats like pdf, epub, etc.

    I evaluated kindle and nook when shopping for my wife. She only wanted to read. Most of the book prices I checked where cheaper with nook so that's what I got her. Since she likes to read in bed at night, the lack of a back light annoyed her. It seemed no matter how she positioned her book light, there was always glare so I sold the nook and got a nook color. It's very nice and much better than the original.

    Compared to my iPad2, however, it's crap. While the text is a little crisper (because the screen is smaller), the interface is choppy and it hangs often. The few apps in the nook store are overpriced.

    If you can afford the iPad, it's a much better value. Especially if you get an original iPad 1 instead of the newer model. There isn't a ton of difference between them.
     
  15. patrickdunn macrumors 6502a

    patrickdunn

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2009
    Location:
    St. Louis, MO
    #15
    If they will use it for only reading, I would get a dedicated e-reader such as the Kindle or nook. I feel this build quality is great on those.

    If they want to do anything else: internet, games, much. The iPad is a better choice.
     
  16. jonnymo5 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2008
    Location:
    Texas
    #16
    If you can only get one I would say get the iPad. It does so much more than the Kindle and the eye-strain argument only affects a few people. I have read over 10 books on the iPad and have had no issues.

    That said I would recommend the Kindle app over iBooks. Kindle has a better selection and can be used on many many devices so if you ever get a Kindle device or an Android tablet you don't lose access to your books.
     
  17. Phil A. Moderator

    Phil A.

    Staff Member

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    Apr 2, 2006
    Location:
    Shropshire, UK
    #17
    Personally I feel that if you want an eReader (and just an eReader) then the Kindle is the better choice. If you want a multi-purpose device that you might want to use for reading a book occasionally, then an iPad is fine.
    The perfect solution is to get both ;)
     
  18. asdfx3 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2010
    #18
    If you're only going to read books on it, a pure e-reader is preferable. E-ink, light weight, and generally smaller size make it a more enjoyable experience. Of course for anything but reading plain text an iPad is better, but a million features they don't want won't make it more attractive.

    One major factor is whether you have a stock of ebooks already and whether they are compatible with the Kindle. I have heard that the Kindle can read pdf's but the experience is not as good as on an LCD screen because you can't resize and reflow text like you would from other formats.
     
  19. TheWheelMan macrumors 6502a

    TheWheelMan

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    Mar 15, 2011
    #19
    The problem with reading PDFs on the Kindle has nothing to do with the type of screen. It's the size if the screen. An iPad screen is just better suited to the shape and size of most PDF documents. Even my Kindle DX wasn't as good for PDFs as the iPad.

    Also, if you're going to be reading books with a lot of images, you might find the iPad better. But those reviews of the Kindle were probably comparing the Kindle to an iPad. They really are entirely different things whose possible uses happen to cross paths. If you can determine your personal needs (and can't buy or don't need both), that will be the best way to decide.
     
  20. asdfx3 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2010
    #20
    Well, with an eink screen zooming in isn't a great solution because scrolling side to side as well as up and down is more painful because of the slow refresh rates. Plus depending on what you're reading the PDF might be split into columns making navigation even more annoying. If the refresh were as fast as LCD screens it wouldn't be any worse than reading on a phone.

    Also, isn't the DX screen as big as the iPads? Does the Kindle UI reserve some of the space for itself?
     
  21. itsmrjon macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2011
    Location:
    Chicago
    #21
    I specifically sold my kindle in lieu of an iPad for reading technical journals.

    The kindle could not handle a decent number of technical figures/graphs/equations in TeX PDFs (it just would not display them properly, or not display them at all). The iPad on the other hand does not have this problem what so ever.

    It's also nice to get my email and listen to music while I read in a very convenient way.
     
  22. tekker macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2011
    #22
    You want to get an iPad and your argument against the Kindle is better reading! LOL

    Kid, just tell your parents you want to spend your days playing games and going on the internet, because it's the truth. And if it's not... why make your parents spend ATLEAST $400 more?
     
  23. Sanveann macrumors 6502

    Sanveann

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2009
    Location:
    Michigan
    #23
    Ok, bad example. But my point was, is he reading kids' books with lots of illustrations and the like, or is the stuff he's reading mostly novels with primarily text? Because I could NOT read HP, LOTR or similar very long books on the iPad comfortably. But then, I am also not 8 :)
     
  24. donnaw macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2011
    Location:
    Austin TX
    #24
    I have both. For myself I prefer reading on the Kindle. Because it is so light and easy to hold. It's lighter than a paperback, I can take it on vacation without worrying about charging, glare is not an issue, and if I do get it wet something it was much cheaper. I do not find the menu, etc akward. After all, once you select a book all you have to do is turn the page.

    That being said, I read iBooks to my grandkids because the screen is bigger and color.

    Each has it's purpose and fits well for that purpose. If I were traveling on a plane with my grandkids though the iPad would win, hands down. Mostly because of the color, the ability too share concurrently, and the capability to do other things (such as games - there are many educational games they love).

    As a previous poster said, the first thing you should research the availability of content to you. If that is equal, then go from there.
     
  25. taipan61 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 18, 2011
    Location:
    corner starbucks
    #25
    buy both,
    have your parents buy the iPad for the family, then buy the kindle (or other e-reader) yourself that way both bases are covered and the family can share
     

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