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Mm. New Kobo arrived yesterday. Less than 24 hours later, I have several impressions of the device and the overall buying experience.

Borders customer service leaves something to be desired. I had initially cancelled my order (I’m in the process of moving and prefer to pay the movers than spend $160 dollars) and gotten a confirmation email. Two days later, I got an email saying they’d shipped it. *sigh* Oh well. Nothing I can do. It did arrive earlier than it was supposed to (July 2nd). My first thought was that the packaging was adorable. From the outside, it looks like a hardcover book. Inside, the first thing that greets you is the screen informing you of the easy set-up. Shortly after this is where everything takes a detour.

Yes, charging is easy. (It arrives already charged.) Programming the date and time into it is mega easy. Everything else seems to be a pain in the ass. I don’t know if it’s because I don’t usually buy all the fun tech stuff everyone else has been getting the past few years, but I swear this seems harder than it’s supposed to be. And there are no instructions.

For example, when I tried to figure out how to move all the books from my computer onto the ereader, I looked at both the user manual and help guide on the device. The instructions I got were to drag and drop files onto it. No instructions on where (like a folder) or if there’s a button I need to push or something I need to run from the borders app. Basically, nothing that tells me how to get it to show up on the device. The website and forum were likewise unhelpful. My particular issue: I dragged and dropped 77 ebooks – 2 showed up when I unplugged it from my laptop, 1 of the 2 was locked (thank you, Adobe Digital Editions), and the other wouldn’t even open to tell me the file was protected. *sigh*


Over the next four and a half hours, I synched my kobo with Adobe DE, deleted and re-added all of my ebooks (it still only shows those first two, but the amount of available disk space did go down both times), got turned around in that repetitive and uninformative user guide (which is a separate section from the help file – neither says a great deal more than the website) and was informed at the Kobo forum that there’d be a firmware update sometime soonish (I think it was promised before I even got mine) that would fix the major issues.

Like not being able to delete the 100 books that are preloaded. I assume I will also be able to do things the user guide says I can do now, like removing books from my “currently reading” list using the borders desktop app or read the books I have on my computer (legal downloads, most of them) on my kobo without having to sync it and update the library every ten minutes (not that it ever worked).

Pros:

I love the design. The size, color, button accessibility, font size and overall look are perfect for me. I may have to get a cover. I’m scared I’ll do something wicked to the screen (which pictures do not do justice).

It is fantastically easy to organize and sort books that are on it. Especially since it’ll let me pick up where I left off and browse through chapters easily. I may end up reliving my high school days, reading three to six books at a time.

Cons:

All of the options that should be available aren’t working just right yet: being able to upload (and read) epub and pdf files I already have, being able to sync the kobo with the borders app and have the library on the device reflect what is on it accurately and a help section that…helps.

But hey, there’s a hidden game. Thanks to ralphmercer for pointing out the video poker to me this morning. To find: Press Menu, Select Help, Press Menu again, Select Help again. At least this will keep me occupied until I get back to my to be read list.

My recommendation? Get it when they fix the issues. Great for the money, still a little buggy fresh off the shelf.