Reader Rocket Review Our evaluation of Arc vs Paperwhite

Display

How do the screens stack up?

Resolution, pixel density, Screen size and anti-glare

Bookstore

How good is the supporting ecosystem?

e-bookstore size, average NYT best sellers price, NYT's top selling titles and 4 more

Performance

How responsive and how long does the e-reader last?

Battery life, SunSpider and Recharge time

Reviews

How do our trusted review sites rank these products?

Reviews from reviews.cnet.com and pcmag.com

No winner declared

Too close to call

Differences What are the advantages of each

Front view of Kobo Arc

Reasons to consider the
Kobo Arc

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Can display full color Yes (LCD) vs No (E-Ink) Somewhat common; view images, read comics, and web-browse in full color
Can run Android apps Yes vs No About half of E-Readers support
Directly download library e-books to device Yes vs No Somewhat common; offers quick access to browsing public library titles available for e-readers
Supports the ePub open format Yes vs No About half of E-Readers support the ePub open format
No black flash when turning pages No (LCD) vs Yes (E-Ink) Somewhat common; provides less obtrusive page turns
Much faster processor 1,500 MHz vs 800 MHz Around 90% faster processor; a faster processor improves responsiveness
Much faster web browser 1,470ms vs 4,500ms 3.1x faster web browser
Uses an open platform Yes vs No Somewhat common; can download ebooks from any source offering formats supported by device
Bigger screen 7" vs 6" More than 15% bigger screen
Automatically adjusts screen orientation Yes vs No Somewhat common; auto-adjusts between portrait & landscape based on orientation
Supports text to speech Yes vs No About half of E-Readers support text to speech
Quicker recharging 3 hours vs 4 hours 25% quicker recharging; requires less time to re-charge
Slightly higher resolution screen 1280 x 800 vs 1024 x 768 More than 30% higher resolution screen
Front view of Amazon Kindle Paperwhite

Reasons to consider the
Amazon Kindle Paperwhite

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Has cellular connectivity 3G vs None Very few E-Readers have cellular data ; download content anywhere with a cellular connection
Customer loyalty program Yes (Kindle Store) vs No (Kobo Books) About half of E-Readers support customer loyalty program
Significantly thinner 9 mm vs 11.5 mm More than 20% thinner ; easily slides into bags
Has reader-to-reader lending Yes (Kindle Store) vs No (Kobo Books) Somewhat common; e-books can be loaned to a friend for a 14 day period; each e-book can only be loaned once
Significantly longer battery life 28 hour vs 10 hour More than 2.8x longer battery life; read more between charges
Is readable in direct sunlight Yes (E-Ink) vs No (LCD) Somewhat common; text doesn't look washed out in direct daylight
Lighter weight 221 g vs 364 g Around 40% lighter weight
Bigger bookstore 4 M book (Kindle Store) vs 3.2 M book (Kobo Books) Around 25% larger e-bookstore size; totalling paid & free books, this reader's bookstore offers a larger selection of reading material

Reviews Word on the street

Specifications Full list of technical specs

screen

Kobo Arc  vs
Kindle Paperwhite 
Screen resolution 1280 x 800 1024 x 768
Screen size 7" 6"
Pixel density 215 ppi 213 ppi
Built-in light LED backlight Paperwhite
Screen type LCD E-Ink
Touchscreen Capacitive Capacitive
Multitouch Yes Yes
Flashes screen black during page turns No Yes

features

Sync across multiple devices Yes Yes
Text to speech Yes No
Directly download library e-books to device Yes No
Web browser Yes Yes
Stereo speakers Yes No
Evernote integration Yes No
Landscape mode Yes Yes
Accelerometer Yes No
Parental controls No Yes

storage

Expansion slot None None
Memory 64 GB 2 GB

form factor

Size 189 x 120 x 11.5 mm 116 x 170 x 9 mm
Weight 364 g 221 g
Interface touchscreen touchscreen
Headphone jack Yes No

connectivity

Kobo Arc  vs
Kindle Paperwhite 
Input/Output port micro-USB micro-USB
Cellular data None 3G
Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n 802.11b/g/n

technical specs

RAM 1,024 MB 256 MB
Processor 1,500 MHz 800 MHz

bookstore

Uses an open platform Yes No
Bookstore Kobo Books Kindle Store
EBookstore size 3.2 M book 4 M book
Free content free content 1.89 M books 2.5 M books
Customer loyalty program No Yes
Average NYT best sellers price $9.95 $9.24
Number of NYT top-selling titles offered+ 38 38
Reader-to-reader lending No Yes
Cloud storage Yes Yes
Reading apps iOS, Android, BlackBerry, PC and Mac iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone, PC and Mac
Additional electronic offerings newspapers, magazines and comics/graphic novels newspapers, magazines, comics/graphic novels, textbooks, audio-books and blogs
Has retail store locations No No
Kobo Arc
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Amazon Kindle Paperwhite
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