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Kobo Clara HD Review

I've fallen in love with the Kobo Clara HD. When I was deciding on what e-reader to get I was torn between the Clara and the Forma, both made by Rakuten Kobo. Each device has stark contrasts from the other. I went with the Clara since I am new to e-readers and didn't want to drop a bunch of money on something I may not be into. I'm so happy with my decision.

Why didn't you get a Kindle?

Amazon's Kindle is front and center as THE e-reader. I decided against a Kindle though. I felt that the Kobo e-readers were superior. Amazon seems to be slow to innovate and improve their Kindle devices. Only just recently did they give the Kindle a backlight. The Kindle and Kindle Paperwhite both lack any type of automatic adjustment to light. And the Kindle Oasis looks like it could potentially snap in half if it shifted the wrong way in your bag.

Kobo on the other hand has a nice range of devices which provides you more options based on your use case. Kobo is really the only real competitor to Amazon. There is the Nook by Barnes & Noble but it's so sad that Barnes & Noble stores don't even seem to push it very hard.

Here's what makes the Kobo a great e-reader...

Design

The physical design is better than Kindles, with more thought put into it. The Clara's back features a sublet texture that adds grip. The screen is recessed and not flush with the bezels. Which doesn't take anything away from the user experience. The screen is also high resolution and just the right size at 6 inches.

Automatic Light Change

One of the biggest factors for me though was the automatic light change feature of the Kobo. Only the Kindle Oasis has this feature. The Clara doesn't have an ambient light sensor like some of the higher end Kobo's but it changes the warmth of the screen based on the time of day. Similar to Apple's night shift.

Book Selection

While Amazon has roughly 1 million more books, I haven't noticed a real difference in selection. In my opinion, those extra 1 million books are probably independent writers self publishing to Amazon. Which might be a pro for some, I however don't plan to read any self published books.

Pocket Integration

It may sound silly but one of the features that sold me was the fact that you can read articles saved to Pocket on the Kobo. I use Pocket on a daily basis and this feature is very convenient.

Case

Amazons cases don't have any ability to stand. Maybe that's not a big deal to some. To me I want something that stands freely. I've become accustomed to it with the iPad. Kobo sadly doesn't have cases for all it's e-readers but the many do. Yes of course you can find 3rd party cases but like cases for iPhones and iPads, they just aren't the same as ones from the device maker.

TL;DR

If you're looking to read more and don't want to pack around physical books, I highly recommend the Clara HD. You won't regret it. You can also see Kobo's book selection for yourself using their mobile apps, and you can even save $5 on your first book by using the link below.

ReviewAndrew Clifton