Know Your E-Reader: Classic Vs. Internet-Based



Classic Nook

Now that you’ve got a new tablet or e-reader I know you are excited to get reading, but maybe you don’t know what to do after you’ve taken it out of the box. 


First, you need to figure out if you have a classic or Internet-based reader. If you are using a tablet, smartphone, or other device that uses apps, you will want to read the Internet-based e-reader section. Otherwise, take a look at the classic e-reader area. Both have their advantages and disadvantages. I, personally, have one of each and tend to rotate between them depending on the situation.


A classic reader, such as a Kindle, is very lightweight and portable, easy on the eyes, can be read in sunlight without a glare, and stores around 1,000 books. For bonus points, its battery tends to last weeks on medium to light reading which is great for vacations and longer trips. It’s a fantastic choice for novels and short stories; however, if I’m trying to read a comic book or something with pictures or colors, I always reach for my Internet-based reader. The battery doesn’t last as long and the glare off the screen hurts my eyes after a while, but the images come out clearer and in better formatting. It’s also significantly faster to download new books to it - you simply tap ‘download’ and have instant access. Choose the one that best suits your reading preferences.


Classic E-Readers


A classic E-Reader can be a Kindle, Nook, or Kobo. It typically has what’s called e-ink which mimics the look of a traditional book page.


What You Will Need to Access E-books from the Library:

USB Cord - You will need to connect your e-reader to your computer if it does not have wi-fi.

Account Verifications - Kindles will need an Amazon account, while Nooks and Kobos must have Adobe IDs to load books on them.

Software - Kobo and Nook both require Adobe Digital Editions to load e-books onto them.

Book Sources - Think beyond Amazon and Barnes & Noble! The library has thousands of free e-books for you to download via OverDrive and OneClickDigital.


Always make sure you check the file type before you download a new book. Each e-reader can only read certain types of files. Get comfortable recognizing the main file types your reader supports.

Kindles - Kindle, PDF, and Mobi are the most popular file formats. Classic Kindles cannot read EPUB files, so be careful to double check the format before you buy or borrow!

Kobo & Nook - EPUB, PDF, and Mobi are the most popular file formats. Only Kindles can read Kindle files (books from Amazon or in the Kindle format on OverDrive).


For a step-by-step getting started guide, check out OverDrive’s Getting Started With E-Readers Help Page or Getting Started With Amazon Kindle.


Internet (App) Based E-Reader



An Internet-based e-reader utilizes apps and can be a Kindle Fire or any type of smartphone or tablet. It does not matter if you have an Apple product or Android; both have the ability to access the OverDrive application.


What You Will Need to Access E-books from the Library:

OverDrive Media Console App - Download for FREE in Google Play Store or App Store.

OverDrive Media Console Account - Simply sign up with your email address to get a FREE account with OverDrive that you can use on all of your devices with the OverDrive App.

Kindle App - Download for FREE in Google Play Store or App Store. Necessary to read Kindle files from OverDrive

Amazon Account - Sign up with your email address for a FREE account that you can use on all of your devices with the Kindle App


For detailed help on getting started, check out OverDrive’s Getting Started With OverDrive then select your type of device at the bottom of the page. 


Written by: Genevieve H. at HPL Central Branch


Check out previous posts in our Holiday Blog Series:
To E-Read or Not: An Introduction
Choosing an E-Reader: What's Right for You?
Beyond the Library: Best Free E-Book Sites

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