10 Best eBook Readers of 2021

Ever since the eBook market saw growth in the late 2000s, eBook readers have become a sought-after option for many people. With a variety of features, it’s easier to see why people, especially book lovers, are becoming more and more interested in buying eReaders.

10 Best eBook Readers

However, since e-readers come with a price, you need to gain all the information that you can before buying them. People who are involved in self-publishing eBooks should also have a good knowledge of the best e-readers so that they can make their books available on the desired platform.

Generally, Amazon’s Kindles have been dominating the entire eBook market in the US. However, there are a few alternatives that can also offer you the best deal on your investment. In this article, we have discussed all of them.

Here’s a quick overview of what you’ll learn.

What is an eBook reader?

An eBook reader, also known as an eReader, is a device that enables you to read electronic books. Over the years, there has been significant advancement of the eBook hardware, where high-end features were included like high-resolution screen, waterproofing, backlit, etc. With the growing popularity and use of eReaders, the prices have also fallen and are becoming more and more affordable to the public.

Advantages of using an eBook Reader

There are many benefits of owning an e-book reader. They are:

  • Offers less distraction

    Reading a book on the phone is distracting. You might receive calls from time to time, which will tempt you to leave your book and answer them. Aside from that, the messages or notifications popping up will also give you a hard time concentrating on the book.

  • Easier to read

    E-readers are easier to read for long hours at a stretch. However, reading on a tablet or phone for long hours will cause eye fatigue. Besides, eReaders also provide a good reading experience than paper as you can increase or decrease the size of the font as per your comfort. You can even adjust the lighting of the screen to read in low light.

  • Easier to carry around

    Neither a single heavy book nor a pile of books is convenient to carry around. However, with the small and compact e-readers, it is possible. E-readers have increased capacity and can enable you to store thousands of books. So, you can store your favorite pile and carry it around anywhere you like.

  • Cost-effective investment

    Buying your favorite ePUB reader will surely cost you a few dollars. However, it is a good investment and will certainly be cost-effective in the future. Besides, you will find several free eBooks on the Internet which you can download and use. So, you may not even have to buy some books.

  • Provides extra tools

    Annoyed that you lost the last page you were reading? No problem! The eBook reader will bookmark and keep it safe in the memory for you. Some eReaders also come with real-aloud features, organization shelves, built-in dictionary, translators, notes and highlights, etc., which will significantly improve your reading experience.

2021’s Top Best eBook readers

These are some of the best eReaders you can consider buying.

  1. Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2018)

    Best for: Amazon readers
    Price: $ 129.99
    Screen Size: 6
    Weight: 6.4
    Storage Capacity: 32
    Pros:

    • Waterproof
    • Long battery life
    • Allows playing audiobook over Bluetooth
    • Flat front enables easy cleaning

    Cons:

    • No support for immersion reading

    If you want to buy a waterproof e-reader, then this is the least expensive one in the market. It is available in three models, i.e., a default 8 GB one, the one with a lot of audiobooks, and another one with a cellular-enabled unit.

    Rating: 4.5

  2. Kobo Libra H2O

    Best for: Comic book lovers, Library book borrowers
    Price: $ 169.99
    Screen Size: 7
    Weight: 6.8
    Storage Capacity: 8
    Pros:

    • Light-weight
    • File format support
    • Water-resistant design
    • Front light that changes color
    • Buttons for page turn

    Cons:

    • No audiobook support
    • No option for library subscription
    • Doesn’t support Kindle eBook reading

    It is basically the perfect e-reader you could ever find. It is hand-sized and contains design elements that are quite similar to Kobo Forma. Unlike Kindle devices that read only Kindle or MOBI format eBooks, Kobo devices can read a variety of eBooks in different formats.

    Rating: 4.5

  3. Kobo Clara HD

    Best for: Library & Third-party eBook reading
    Price: $ 129.99
    Screen Size: 6
    Weight: 5.9
    Storage Capacity: 8
    Pros:

    • Small and light-weight
    • Offers support for the native file format
    • Access to the public library
    • Front light that changes color

    Cons:

    • Not waterproof

    The Clara HD e-reader enables the borrowing and reading of books from US-based libraries. However, the libraries must use the Overdrive software. You can read books and documents of various formats, mainly PDF, EPUB, CBZ, CBR, JPEG, RTF, text files, etc.

    Rating: 4.5

  4. Onyx Boox Note Air

    Best for: Academic eBook reading
    Price: $ 479.99
    Screen Size: 10.3
    Weight: 14.81
    Storage Capacity: 32
    Pros:

    • Beautiful with a premium build
    • Broad format
    • Pen with a magnetic attachment
    • Application support

    Cons:

    • Pens work only in the first-party application
    • Cannot work as an external monitor
    • Not waterproof

    This is an extremely well-built and reasonably-priced E Ink tablet. It is an excellent choice for anyone who works with dense reading assignments, professional literature, or letter-sized documents. The restful and eye-friendly screen also makes it comfortable to use for the readers.

    Rating: 4.5

  5. Apple iPad 32 GB (8th Generation)

    Best for: Budget-friendly iPad buyers, students, casual users
    Price: $ 329.00
    Screen Size: 10.2
    Weight: 1.08
    Storage Capacity: 32
    Pros:

    • Fast
    • Access to the app library
    • Affordable
    • A great alternative to Chrome book

    Cons:

    • Single user operating system
    • Outdated design
    • Dull front-facing camera

    This eighth-generation iPad has the lowest cost as compared to other iPad models. It features a retina display and comes with built-in support for learning, hearing, vision, mobility, etc. It is an excellent alternative for Chromebooks.

    Rating: 4.0

  6. Amazon Kindle Kids Edition

    Best for: Kids or budget-friendly buyers
    Price: $ 109.99
    Screen Size: 6
    Weight: 10.2
    Storage Capacity: 8
    Pros:

    • Good value on investment
    • Parental dashboard

    Cons:

    • Picture ebooks don’t look good
    • Not waterproof

    Even though a kid’s edition, it offers excellent value to anyone who loves reading digital books. It comes without ads and employs existing hardware. It has four cute case options, i.e., a pink one, a blue one, the one with birds on a wire, and another one with tiny creatures.

    Rating: 4.0

  7. Amazon Kindle Oasis (2019)

    Best for: People preferring stylish Amazon eBook readers
    Price: $ 249.99
    Screen Size: 7
    Weight: 6.8
    Storage Capacity: 32
    Pros:

    • Waterproof
    • Beautiful and slim design
    • Crisp and bright screen
    • Backlight adjustment

    Cons:

    • Pricey
    • Heavy and old-fashioned overdrive

    This is an advanced and one of the most expensive e-readers sold by Amazon. It has a unique design and has an asymmetrical body. It weighs the same as Paperwhite but is a little wider than that. Due to its large size, it is easier to hold and carry around.

    Rating: 4.0

  8. Onyx Boox Note2

    Best for: Large format e-book reading
    Price: $ 549.99
    Screen Size: 10.3
    Weight: 13.3
    Storage Capacity: 64
    Pros:

    • Long battery life
    • Pen available for taking notes
    • Supports Google Play
    • Can work as a secondary monitor

    Cons:

    • Third-party apps don’t display correctly
    • Wi-Fi turns off during sleep

    This device can act both as an Android device as well as a second monitor. It is widely popular as a large-format e-ink reader, where you can read documents of any size. Aside from that, you can also use it for taking notes and e-ink browsing.

    Rating: 4.0

  9. Amazon Kindle (2019)

    Best for: Budget-friendly buyers
    Price: $ 89.99
    Screen Size: 6
    Weight: 6.1
    Storage Capacity: 4
    Pros:

    • Front light that changes color
    • Similar features like other Kindles

    Cons:

    • Outdated design
    • Not waterproof
    • Low-resolution screen

    Amazon Kindle is one of the popular eBook readers for Windows, Android, and Mac. It is a bit expensive than Paperwhite but does offer more value. The device comes in black or white, includes advertisements on its lock-screen, and has more contrast than earlier Kindle models.

    Rating: 3.5

  10. Barnes & Noble Nook GlowLight 3

    Best for: Barnes & Noble eBook reading
    Price: $ 119.99
    Screen Size: 6
    Weight: 6.7
    Storage Capacity: 8
    Pros:

    • Buttons for page turn
    • ePUB format support
    • Sharp screen
    • Front light that changes color

    Cons:

    • Limited selection for store
    • Unappealing UI

    Its interface is not as polished as the Kobo or Kindle eBook readers. It has a wide, plastic body and the store only contains a few books. The most impressive feature of this eReader is GlowLight, which automatically changes from cool blue to warm yellow as per the internal clock of the device.

    Rating: 3.5

An alternative to eBook readers

Let’s say you really loved learning the advantages of e-book readers and want to buy it. You may also have picked up a few favorites from the above list of best e-readers. But, what if you’re just a student and can’t afford it? Is there a way where you can read a digital book on your phone or tablet?

Yes, there is! You can read a book without having a dedicated book reader by using free eBook reader apps. You just need to download them on your mobile or tablet, and voila! You can read all the books you want digitally! There are also options for open-source eBook readers, where you can publicly access various e-books.

Is it worth investing in an e-book reader?

Now you may be thinking, why not use the eBook reader freeware instead of buying the e-readers? Why pay when you can get it for free?

Well, in that case, we would say that you can decide depending on how much of a reader you are. If you’re an avid reader, it is best to use eReaders. However, if you don’t read books regularly, you can use the free e-reading apps.

Besides, these apps don’t provide a backlight option like the eReading devices. Of course, you can read a document without it using the night mode on your phone, but it will be pretty harsh on your eyes.

Aside from that, e-readers are usually lightweight, have long battery life, and have non-reflective electronic ink displays that can offer a paper-like visual experience. This will strain the eyes less than the LCD screen and provide an enjoyable reading experience both outdoors and indoors.

If you love reading eBooks, then eBook readers are worth the investment. Besides, the future of eBooks also seems promising. The future eBooks are more likely to have a lot of advanced upgrades with respect to e-discovery, navigation, indexing, etc. So, e-book readers are a pretty good investment.

Final Words

Now that you have got a brief comparison of eBook readers, the selection process will become a lot easier. However, while choosing an eBook reader, remember that you’ll make a decision based on the support of a particular ecosystem. For example, Amazon, Kobo, Barnes & Nobles, etc. use DRM protection for their books. So, if you’re buying an eReader, you can only access the books of the particular brand.

Luckily, it is possible to remove DRM protection from the books. You can take help from companies that offer relevant services or do it yourself. However, we recommend taking professional aid since it may result in removing other necessary features like character summaries or formatting.

Another alternative is to convert the formats of the eBooks, which is also better to carry out with the help of eBook conversion companies. We, at MAP Systems, are experts in providing eBook conversion services and can offer conversion support for different types of e-books like fixed layout eBooks, interactive eBooks, reflowable eBooks, etc. Besides, we also help with designing eBooks. However, if you are interested in designing yourself, here’s how to create an eBook from scratch. So, you can reach us for any help that you want to receive.