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The Best E-Reader

Last updated on April 9, 2019

We looked at the top 10 E-Readers and dug through the reviews from 182 of the most popular review sites including New York Times Wirecutter, Tech Radar, TechHive, Trusted Reviews, Digital Trends, Tech Spot and more. The result is a ranking of the best E-Readers.

Best E Reader

Why Trust The DWYM Score?

DWYM is your trusted product review source. Along with our in-house experts, our team analyzes thousands of product reviews from the most trusted websites. We then create one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in a category.

Our experts reviewed the top 10 E-Readers and also dug through the reviews from 182 of the most popular review sites including New York Times Wirecutter, Tech Radar, TechHive, Trusted Reviews, Digital Trends, Tech Spot and more. The result is a ranking of the best of the best E-Readers.

Our Picks For The Top E-Readers

Our Take
Experts Included
Pros
Cons
  The Best Overall

Amazon

Waterproof Kindle Paperwhite E-Reader

Overall Take

Our top choice for e-readers has a crisp screen and easy touchscreen controls. Reviewers said it was softer on the eyes than other e-readers, and they loved the slimmer profile. Its waterproof casing and Audible compatibility are well worth the money.

Experts Included
DWYM Electronics Experts plus BestReviews, New York Times Wirecutter, Trusted Reviews, Tech Radar, Wired, CNET and 7 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon and Best Buy.
Pros
" Excellent screen qualit and easy to use."
Cons
"More annoying is the lack of any page-turning buttons. The Paperwhite has always been a purely touchscreen device, and if you want that physical response to moving from page to page then you’ll have to pay more for the Kindle..."
  The Best Value

Amazon

Kindle Paperwhite E-Reader (7th Gen)

Overall Take

Our Best Value selection is an earlier edition of Amazon's Kindle Paperwhite. The high-resolution display and side-mounted LEDs make this e-reader particularly accessible. Amazon's special Bookerly font makes onscreen reading even easier. Lightning-fast page turns will help you devour your favorite books quickly. Read More

Experts Included
DWYM Electronics Experts plus Aging in Place, PC World, Tech Radar, Engadget, Good E-Reader. Along with user reviews from Amazon and Best Buy.
Pros
" You can read a book without turning a page. As you are reading one, you can learn about other books in the series, author background, and similar information with “About This Book.” This tool helps to ensure that the books..."
Cons
"Still missing some features"

Amazon

Kindle Oasis E-Reader

Overall Take

The Oasis has a larger screen than other Kindles and a sturdier aluminum casing. An ambient light sensor automatically adjusts brightness for easy reading in different lighting conditions. The model boasts a higher price tag, and some users missed the headphone jack. But overall, this reader garnered rave reviews. Read More

Experts Included
DWYM Electronics Experts plus BestReviews, CNET, Trusted Reviews, Tech Radar, The Guardian, Android Central and 6 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon and Best Buy.
Pros
" Combines amazing 300 ppi high resolution display,sleek design, effortless page turn feature and adjustable built in light."
Cons
"The big caveat is that the new Kindle Oasis doesn't come with a case."

Kobo

Waterproof Aura ONE E-Reader

Overall Take

This high-end reader holds up to its Kindle competition with a large screen and impressive memory capacity. It's also waterproof, and it comes with an array of LED lights around the screen for nighttime reading. Though the added size and weight may make this reader less travel-friendly, it's an overall... Read More

Experts Included
DWYM Electronics Experts plus New York Times Wirecutter, Tech Spot, Trusted Reviews, Digital Trends, Engadget, CNET and 6 more. Along with user reviews from .
Pros
" And Kobo’s high-end reader, the Aura One, has a 7.8-inch display. The value of these Kobo models’ larger screens is debatable. Some people will benefit from being able to use larger text and to see more on the screen"
Cons
"Touch screen occasionally didn't respond well"
Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, DWYM analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.
17

Products Considered

We identified the majority of the e-readers available to purchase.
10

Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products to review and score.

View All Product Rankings

182

Expert Reviews Included

Reviews from our DWYM category experts and analysis of some of the most respected sources including: New York Times Wirecutter, Tech Radar, TechHive, Trusted Reviews, Digital Trends.

587,304

User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including Amazon, Best Buy, Target.

DWYM is your trusted roduct review source. Our team reviews thousands of product reviews from the trusted top experts and combines them into one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in their category.

The Best Overall

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite E-Reader (10th Gen)

Expert Summarized Score
9.2
13 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
8.5
4,117 user reviews
The DWYM Expert Take

Our top choice for e-readers has a crisp screen and easy touchscreen controls. Reviewers said it was softer on the eyes than other e-readers, and they loved the slimmer profile. Its waterproof casing and Audible compatibility are well worth the money.

What other experts liked
Excellent screen qualit and easy to use.
- BestReviews
When you’re reading, you can easily turn a page with a tap or a swipe. The screen is evenly lit across its entire surface, and the text is incredibly crisp.
- New York Times Wirecutter
November 19, 2018 | Full review
The screen itself packs the same 300 pixels per inch resolution as the previous Paperwhite, and it remains fantastically sharp and readable. Text is crisp at any size, and since its an E Ink display – as opposed to LCD...
- Trusted Reviews
November 16, 2018 | Full review
A big upgrade over the original Paperwhite, and one of a few features inherited from the top-end Oasis, is the fact the Kindle Paperwhite (2018) now comes with a waterproof design.
- Tech Radar
November 7, 2018 | Full review
This new Paperwhite is waterproof, up to two meters for 60 minutes.Now that Kindles are waterproofed, there’s no turning back. Pool lovers and bathtub readers will greatly appreciate this addition to the Paperwhite.
- Wired
November 7, 2018 | Full review
10 percent slimmer, lighter and more durable with full waterproofing.
- CNET
The biggest new feature of the 2018 Kindle Paperwhite is its waterproof design, which earned an IPX8 rating. That's up to 60 minutes of submergence in 2 meters of water. You don't need to worry about it falling into your...
- Tom's Guide
December 10, 2018 | Full review
New this year is water resistance to 2 metres for up to 60 minutes, which means trips to the beach or poolside are less fraught with danger.
- The Guardian
December 6, 2018 | Full review
A major addition to this year’s Paperwhite is an iPX8 rating, allowing you to use it in the tub or at the pool. It should protect the ebook reader in up to two meters of water for 60 minutes. It’s...
- Digital Trends
Amazon says that the new Paperwhite is IPX8 rated against “accidental immersion in up to two meters of fresh water for up to 60 minutes.”
- The Verge
November 7, 2018 | Full review
The new, slimmer design, less than a third of an inch thick, and the lightness, really stand out.
- Forbes
November 7, 2018 | Full review
Obviously, it means you can listen to audiobooks from Audible, even if I'd argue the Audible app for your phone is easier for most situations.
- Engadget
November 13, 2018 | Full review
The screen is now made of glass and flush with the body, which feels more premium.
- The Next Web
What other experts didn't like
Some type of files may need to be converted.
- BestReviews
More annoying is the lack of any page-turning buttons. The Paperwhite has always been a purely touchscreen device, and if you want that physical response to moving from page to page then you’ll have to pay more for the Kindle...
- Trusted Reviews
November 16, 2018 | Full review
It doesn't feel as premium as the Oasis - mostly as it has a plastic rear
- Tech Radar
November 7, 2018 | Full review
Despite updated processor, Paperwhite feels sluggish when it comes to doing anything other than page turning.
- Wired
November 7, 2018 | Full review
A little more expensive than the previous model. The ad-free version costs $20 more.
- CNET
Annoyingly, Amazon doesn't include a USB power adapter.
- Tom's Guide
December 10, 2018 | Full review
The swiping gestures are slightly easier now that there’s no lip to the display, but page turn buttons are better for one-handed reading – you’ll need to spend another £110 for the Kindle Oasis for those on an Amazon e-reader.
- The Guardian
December 6, 2018 | Full review
We’re more disappointed at the lack of a blue-light filter, or any kind of option to adjust color temperature on the Paperwhite.
- Digital Trends
And while it’s not really a surprise given the rest of Amazon’s lineup, the new Paperwhite charges by Micro USB instead of USB-C — particularly disappointing considering that it’ll likely be another three years before Amazon updates the Paperwhite again....
- The Verge
November 7, 2018 | Full review
The power button is on the bottom edge of the tablet, which I sometimes worry that I might inadvertently press on it while reading.
- Forbes
November 7, 2018 | Full review
The base Kindle now comes in at 167 PPI, but unless what you're reading has lots of images and graphics, slightly blockier text isn't an egregious experience, at least in my opinion.
- Engadget
November 13, 2018 | Full review
This isn’t new to the 2018 Paperwhite, but I really wish you could disable turning pages with a tap. You can disable the touchscreen and turn pages with a swipe, but this blocks all other features.
- The Next Web

The Best Bang For Your Buck

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite E-Reader (7th Gen)

Expert Summarized Score
8.8
5 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
8.9
51,402 user reviews
The DWYM Expert Take

Our Best Value selection is an earlier edition of Amazon's Kindle Paperwhite. The high-resolution display and side-mounted LEDs make this e-reader particularly accessible. Amazon's special Bookerly font makes onscreen reading even easier. Lightning-fast page turns will help you devour your favorite books quickly.

What other experts liked
You can read a book without turning a page. As you are reading one, you can learn about other books in the series, author background, and similar information with “About This Book.” This tool helps to ensure that the books you choose to read are within niches that you prefer...
- Aging in Place
You’ll be able to read on a high-resolution (300ppi) six-inch screen, with clear visibility in any lighting condition thanks to side-mounted LEDs.
- PC World
November 30, 2018 | Full review
The 2015 edition was the first to offer an improved 300ppi display, a tweaked Bookerly font and a whole new typesetting engine – designed to improve character spacing, typography and page layouts for a more pleasant reading experience.
- Tech Radar
November 7, 2018 | Full review
Page flips (even fast and frenzied ones) never choked up the Paperwhite, nor did sifting through Amazon's menus and book listings.
- Engadget
July 3, 2015 | Full review
Page turns are lightning quick
- Good E-Reader
October 15, 2014 | Full review
What other experts didn't like
No audio capabilities
- Aging in Place
Still missing some features
- Tech Radar
November 7, 2018 | Full review
Amazon's ecosystem isn't for everyone.
- Engadget
July 3, 2015 | Full review
Internet Browser prone to crashing
- Good E-Reader
October 15, 2014 | Full review

Overall Product Rankings

1. Amazon Kindle Paperwhite E-Reader (10th Gen)
Overall Score: 9.0
Reviews Included: 15

2. Amazon Kindle Paperwhite E-Reader (7th Gen)
Overall Score: 8.5
Reviews Included: 7

3. Amazon Kindle Oasis E-Reader
Overall Score: 8.5
Reviews Included: 14

4. Kobo Aura ONE E-Reader
Overall Score: 8.4
Reviews Included: 12

5. Amazon Kindle Voyage E-Reader
Overall Score: 8.2
Reviews Included: 11

6. Kobo Aura H2o E-Reader
Overall Score: 8.1
Reviews Included: 11

7. Amazon Kindle 6-Inch E-reader
Overall Score: 7.7
Reviews Included: 9

8. Amazon Fire HD8 E-Reader
Overall Score: 7.5
Reviews Included: 6

9. Barnes & Noble Nook GlowLight Plus E-Reader
Overall Score: 7.5
Reviews Included: 9

10. Amazon Fire 7 Tablet
Overall Score: 6.9
Reviews Included: 12

An Overview On E-Readers

E-readers have changed the way people consume books, magazines and articles. Instead of choosing between one or two physical books to bring with you on vacation, you can bring hundreds of options along in one sleek device. E-books tend to be cheaper than paperbacks, so it’s less expensive to expand your mind and check out new authors and titles. They’re also environmentally friendly; downloading e-books instead of buying hardcover books saves plenty of paper and cardboard.

The popularity of e-readers has spawned a large industry of digital reading devices, and finding the right one for your needs requires some research. Understanding the technology behind e-readers can help you make your decision.

E-readers take e-book files and make them accessible to readers by storing them on a small computer. Their optimized portability, readability and battery life make them great literary companions. Many models today are designed for easy reading in sunlight. Amazon’s Kindle Paperwhite has a glare-free display for kicking back with a new novel at the beach.

Staring at a computer screen to catch up on your reading list might sound like a headache, but e-reader technology reduces eye strain. The Kobo Aura ONE E-Reader has an impressive 7.8-inch screen with a built-in ComfortLight that protects your eyes while lighting up your screen for late night reading. The 7th Generation Kindle Paperwhite has an adjustable built-in light, and the new Kindle Paperwhite lets you adjust the size and boldness of your book’s text.

Almost all physical books come in e-book form today. Amazon’s Kindle readers offer access to over a thousand books, magazines and more to Prime members, and The Kobo Aura ONE connects directly to your local library for free access to their entire e-book catalog.

Older e-readers needed to be charged regularly, but newer models have extended battery lives for more reading freedom. The Kindle Oasis can go weeks without a charge, so you won’t have to go hunting for power outlets at stops on your next road trip.

If audiobooks are more your speed, you can still listen to them on some e-readers. The Kindle Oasis and Kindle Paperwhite are compatible with Audible, a massive library of audiobooks and original content.

Comic book fans can keep up with their favorite series on an e-reader, too. The Kobo Aura ONE has HD resolution and 32 GB of onboard memory to hold up to 700 graphic novels. It also supports 14 different file formats, making visual books just as accessible as a standard e-book.

You don’t need to worry about squinting to make out the words on your e-reader’s screen, either. The Pixels Per Inch (or PPI) of modern e-readers eclipses their predecessors. All four of our top picks have impressive 300 ppi screens, so every sentence will be crystal clear.

Good e-readers can get a little pricey, so you’ll want to think about a few more things before you commit to one. 

DWYM Fun Fact

E-readers didn’t reach the masses until the mid-2000s, but someone saw the new technology coming. Author Bob Brown predicted the death of printed books in his 1930 book “The Readies.” Brown suggested building a machine that had ribbons of miniaturized text scrolling behind a magnifying glass. It would shorten reading time by creating hyper-abbreviated words, with em dashes replacing certain words. He called these shortened words “readies.” Brown also said that the machine would allow users to adjust type size for easier reading, and he said that the machine would reduce paper waste and save trees.

Only 150 copies of Brown’s futuristic text were published when he was alive., But the book is now available in paperback, hardcover and of course, as an e-book.

The E-Reader Buying Guide

  • Will you be traveling a lot with your e-reader? If you regularly jet set for work or play, you’ll want an ultra-portable e-reader. At just 6.6” x 4.6”, the Kindle Paperwhite fits easily in your purse or carry-on bag.
  • How frequently do you plan on using your e-reader? All four of our top picks have improved battery life over their predecessors. They can go for “weeks” without a charge, but that’s dependent on how frequently you use them. Give your e-reader’s battery life a test run at home before you take it on any long trips.
  • E-readers can download books via WiFi or over your cellular network. Downloading over your home WiFi network will save you some cash, but you’ll be out of luck if you want to check out a new title on the go. Using a cellular network is convenient, but the data charges might drive up your cellular bill. Talk to your network provider before you dive into this option, and make sure you budget accordingly for your bookworm habit.
  • How many e-books, audiobooks and graphic novels do you plan on reading? You’ll need more memory if you want an extensive collection. The Kindle Oasis comes in 8 GB or 32 GB versions, while the Kobo Aura ONE comes with 32 GB of built-in memory.
  • What type of controls are you most comfortable with? Our three Amazon Kindle selections and the Kobo Aura ONE all come with effortless touchscreen controls. However, some older e-readers still use buttons to help you scroll through pages.