Illustration for article titled Opposite Book: e-reader needs with a picky grump

Well, folks, we are indoors and on couches a lot more. I still travel a lot even in this weird world, but time in hotel rooms is sedentary as going out is verboten, or just useless. My eyes are bugging out with led/OLED screens from my fire/iPad/phone/notebook, and I badly need an e-Ink reader. (I just don’t have the room for book bulk with my airline gear) But that’s where picking a new device gets complicated for this Luddite.

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I need books from multiple sources. Kindle? Of course, it’s easy. But the Overdrive/Libby app will let me borrow from my local library too! (its what they support) and Kindles don’t do that app in favor of its way, but some kindle library files don’t work with all kindles either, believe it or not. This is limiting my choices of readers. I want something not locked up and bound to one diety’s permissions.

In 2018, Google changed how they run the play store, tied it to security systems, and that locked out many android powered readers that run anything other than 8.0 and up. This means you could no longer just DL the kindle app and run it on your Icarus, Boyue, Energy readers like before. Icarus just went out of business due to that. So far, that leaves me with android e-ink readers running such software to $200+ devices. Likebook Mars, for example, is where I’m at. Or, root a Nook Gloworm 3? It’s a crummy reader, to begin with, for lots of money. Why bother with that? Now I’m hacking pre-broken stuff.

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This leaves the only other option of sideloading files, removing DRM from kindle files, etc. which is not exactly how I want to live. Also, some readers include Overdrive’s app; however, I got burned with that a few times with other included software that died early. I still have a button on my Roku remote fora dead ‘rdio’ service. Therefore I need an ability to put a new reader app on the device when the old one dies off. I don’t trust digital app lifespans. Besides, those including overdrive, can’t install the Kindle app.

Rigging my world systems just to get by? Is that what we need to do? Hack everything and get your USB cables out and a laptop and . . . what’s the point?

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Turn it on. open the software, borrow a library book, buy other books.
I’m frankly surprised that today, we have a problem. Not a single device is neutral flexible.

Perhaps I should kickstart the basic e-ink reader on high-end android so all apps can be installed. Running them is a question with that screen but if you’re trying to play PUBG on an e-reader, you a damn idiot. Leave it up to the user to have common sense.

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Which is something I could try to be an idiot about on the Likebook (droid 8.0). So I suppose I’m spending $200. Or $280 on the Boox (droid 9.0).

Unless yall know of other e-ink screen products that will work across the reader recovers? I’m open to suggestions but don’t step on my lawn! I’m getting old.

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eh...I may just get a Kobo and ignore Kindle apps, get overdrive, and give others my ebook bidness.

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