If you want any more info on the devices file support we'd suggest a shufti at the manufacturers' own websites as getting too deeply into this can seriously sap the will to live.
Text on the iLiad...
Once loaded with media, the Sony proves the most straightforward and intuitive to navigate around. Let's compare how you bookmark a page. With the Sony you press the bookmark button. Simple. With the CyBook and BeBook, you have to open menus and click about hither and thither. With the iLiad you don't do anything, because it doesn't support any type of bookmarking. Only the Sony lets you access all your bookmarks, no matter what book they are in, from a single, central menu.
The same is true of navigation to a specific page. On the Sony, you simply type the page number using the number keys – a feature we flat overlooked in our original review. Both the CyBook and BeBook require you again to open various menus, and while the touchscreen iLiad should make navigation easier you still have to pluck the stylus out of the back and remember which icon does what.
The iIiad's page-turn bar is an interesting bit of design, though: a long rocker strip that runs up the left side of the device that you nudge to the left and right. Its was set to turn pages forward with a right nudge and back with a left when we go it, which seemed a little counter-intuitive. But luckily, if you rummage about in the menus, you can swap the directions around.
The iLiad also has a “Wacom Penabled technology” touchscreen which only works with the supplied plastic stylus. Loose it and you can't access a fair chunk of the UI. A replacement will set you back £14!
...and the PRS-505
Apart from having the most obvious navigation system, the Sony also has the fastest moving UI and menu system. While it certainly doesn't react as instantly as would the UI on an MP3 player, it does go about its business noticeably more briskly than the iLiad, CyBook or BeBook.
I'm sure I recognise that manga from somewhere. Oh yes:
http://www.ukanime.com/images/dailymail.jpg (Don't actually buy it if you want the stuff from the headline, The Mail is being as accurate as usual)
Also, Ichigo Marshmellow is sure to be banned soon, we can't allow depiction of underage smoking now can we?
Is that some Manga on your e-book!?! Best be careful as far as NuGov is concerned all Manga is depraved and pornographic. Now excuse me where was my ichigo marshmellow.
I think the BeBook definitely should have gotten a better rating. The developers are constantly updating the firmware and seem quite responsive to what customers want. Of all the devices it surely has the most future potential, which is most important in a constantly evolving market.
Buy it from www.mybebook.com and enter "email@example.com" as your coupon code upon buying.... you'll save 35 bucks on it. Here's a little vid of the BeBook in action:
It's all very well having these bespoke readers for eBooks but it's not going to work unless you can get virtually any book on the medium. I had a look at the last 10 books I bought and only one was available as an eBook.
If there was a truely wide selection I wouldn't hesitate at getting one as I love the concept.
e-book v. tablet
I'm trying to decide between an iLiad (for the note-taking) and a Tablet (probably a 12' one). If it weren't for the price difference, would anyone recommend the tablet for some particular paper-reading advantage? Or is there a particular disadvantage that I should be aware of?