Kobo Aura H2O Gadget

What is a Kobo Aura H2O (2017)?

Like tablets, e-readers have seen minimal creation in a past few years. Amazon seems to have staid on a Kindle lineup and there isn’t most in a approach of competition. Aside from Kobo, that is, that has been churning out some rather decent e-readers of late.

I was a outrageous fan of a Kobo Aura One and a comparison Aura H2O, and a new Kobo Aura H2O (2017) adopts many of a facilities that done those prior models so good.

It’s a shame, then, that a new Aura H2O falls a small short, particularly with a bizarre battery life and indolent performance. But if you’re after a water-resistant indication afterwards a Aura H2O offers a decent choice to a altogether higher Kindle Paperwhite.

Kobo Aura H2O (2017) – Design

Kobo’s industrial pattern edges on being some-more durable than stylish – which, for a device that’s expected to spend most of a time being thrown into a bag alongside other items, isn’t a misfortune thing.

The black cosmetic physique is clever and good built, while a dimpled behind is grippy if a small basic. Kobo’s trademark is stencilled into a behind of a device, while there’s a blue energy symbol in a tip corner. we like a fact that we indeed have to press a symbol utterly tough for it to respond, definition it won’t incidentally detonate into life in your rucksack.

Related: Best e-readers

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At 6.8 inches, a Kobo Aura H2O has a incomparable shade than any Kindle indication now on a market, and a inexhaustible shade distance does make for a device that’s bigger, thicker and wider overall. we can absolutely reason a Kindle Paperwhite in one hand, yet a breadth of a Aura H2O creates this difficult.

It also isn’t of a distance that will trip into your behind container – something we do indeed find myself doing with a Kindle Voyage. Still, it’s light adequate (210g) to not supplement most weight to a bag and comfy adequate to reason for extended periods.

As a name suggests, a Aura H2O is water-resistant. This is a underline I’ve been pursuit for Amazon to supplement to a Kindles for some time now, and one that seems an apparent choice for a device that’s expected to be used in a bath or around a pool on a holiday.

Kobo says a Aura H2O will happily tarry a asperse in 2m of H2O for adult to 30 minutes, and carrying forsaken it in a bath on a few occasions, I’m gratified to contend that it hasn’t suffered any unpropitious effects. Its water-resistance is a biggest reason to buy this e-reader.

Kobo Aura H2O (2017) – Screen

The Aura H2O’s 6.8-inch Carta E Ink arrangement is scarcely an in. bigger than any Kindle, and it does make for a most roomier reading experience. It’s sharp, too, with a 256ppi fortitude for frail calm in books and minute cinema in comics. That ppi figure is reduce than a Kindle Paperwhite and Voyage, both of that have a 300ppi arrangement – yet unless noticed side-by-side, you’re doubtful to notice any difference.

I do most cite a Kindle Voyage’s shade in that it sits flush with a bezel; a drop on a Aura H2O is a ideal place for dirt to turn caught. But a Voyage is somewhat some-more expensive.

In addition, we still don’t trust a light – that is a frontlight, rather than a backlight – is as splendid or as uniformly widespread as it is on a Kindle Voyage, with a corners of a Aura H2O noticeably brighter than a middle. Nevertheless, it does a good pursuit for those night reading sessions where we don’t wish to disquiet your partner.

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Kobo has combined a neat pretence to a display: a ComfortLight Pro mode that dims a backlight according to a vicinity and boundary a blue hues issued during night. It’s identical to Night Shift on an iPhone, and something that done a important disproportion to eye comfort when we was regulating a Kobo Aura One, so it’s good to see it here too.

There’s no auto-brightness mode, yet – again, something a Kindle Voyage has – so you’ll have to manually change it depending on your surroundings.

Kobo Aura H2O (2017) – Battery Life

This is where a Kobo Aura H2O falls down. Initially, Kobo claimed a H2O would final a week – an peculiar explain for an e-reader – yet a brand’s site now claims “weeks of usage”, that is most some-more in line with a competition.

Still, we haven’t been overly tender by a stamina on uncover here. I’ve been regulating a Aura H2O on a infancy of days over a past week or so, and it’s already down to 30%. Considering I’d routinely pattern a month or so of use from an e-reader, I’m not assured a Kobo Aura H2O will make it.

Kobo Aura H2O (2017) – Software, Performance and Bookstore

My other unchanging emanate with a Kobo Aura H2O is a performance, that is unsuitable and mostly frustrating. Even yet there’s a 1GHz CPU tucked inside a cosmetic body, a program mostly hangs. The keyboard will hang and exclude to switch letters, and I’ve gifted delayed page-turns on countless occasions. I’ve even had to restart a device twice as a outcome of it crashing – something I’ve never before had to do with an e-reader.

Overall, a Aura H2O only feels sluggish; we pattern some-more for £149.99.

There’s 8GB of inner storage, that is adequate space for thousands of books. The prior era of a H2O had a microSD slot, yet that’s left here.

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The program itself is decent, and in a few ways we cite it to Amazon’s UI. First, there’s formation with both Pocket – a illusory read-it-later use that syncs saved web pages opposite inclination – and Adobe Digital Editions.

In addition, you’re not limited to books downloaded from one store, as we can bucket your possess EPUB files here and even use some library lending services. Coming from a excellent, yet heavily limited Amazon ecosystem, this is refreshing.

Kobo’s tangible bookshop lacks a neat self-published calm you’ll find on Amazon, yet it still has a outrageous preference of titles on offer during identical prices.

Should we buy a Kobo Aura H2O (2017)?

If we simply contingency have a waterproof e-reader, and a incomparable Kobo Aura One is outward of your budget, afterwards go for a Kobo Aura H2O. Also, if we can’t presumably be stranded in a Amazon ecosystem, a Kobo is again a good option.

However, a cheaper Kindle Paperwhite (£109.99/$119.99) and a somewhat pricier Kindle Voyage (£169.99/$199.99) are expected to be improved picks for a infancy of people.

They offer some-more unchanging battery life, are faster and underline some-more arguable UIs – and, of course, a outrageous Amazon store behind them. we also most cite a slimmer and narrower pattern of a Kindles, to a incomparable and wider Kobo.

At £149.99, a Kobo Aura H2O isn’t a cheapest and it has one too many frustrating aspects to be suitable for all.


A decent e-reader in certain scenarios – yet disproportionate battery life and indolent opening take a gleam off.

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