Reading List

I have been sick. So that means activities are limited and the best you could do is read. Now reading has never been simpler than on my iPad and since getting the Note, I was wondering if the same experience could be had on Android. Apple’s iBook reader is spiffy. Load up your PDFs and ePub formatted books and you’re given a choice of two shelves, one for PDFs while the other for ePubs.

ePubs are the de facto standard for ebooks these days and Apple supports and extended ePub format meant for pictorial books that has yet to be adopted by other eReaders as yet. For the rest of us, PDFs are probably the best way forward for reading pictorial magazines.

Readers Hub

On the GN, we are given the Reader’s Hub. But it is not a iBook competitor nor was it designed to be one. Samsung’s Reader’s Hub is actually two apps made into one, namely, Zinio and Kobo. There is a also a newspaper section which allows you to download and subscribe to the dailies for a fee but in all, none of them actually allows you to load up a book on your own to read on the go.

Reader’s Hub comes stock standard on the S2 as well. This is probably the saddest app on the GN. iBooks on the iPhone and iPad could easily do this, making sure you don’t go out looking so if you do have to look, what’s there anyway?

 

Go Books

Go is the name of a slew of apps from a Taiwan based company. Found on the Android Market, you can download this for free onto your GN. What I like about this app is that it is fully compatible with the GN in terms of screen size. There is no problems running it and has since become a favorite of mine.

The idea and execution is similar to that of iBooks. You upload the PDF and ePubs of your choice and have the app recognize them by autoscanning or importing it from a directory within your SD card. Once it is up, you are presented with a book shelf of all your reading material.

Because it operates very similarly to iBooks, it becomes a joy to use. The book mark function helps you to keep track where you left off even though you may be reading more than one book at a time while the Night Mode turns the background to black with the text in white, making it much easier for the eyes. The Night Mode function only works with ePub files.

Limitations

In PDF magazine mode, you can only display one page at a time even if you were to read it in landscape mode. This means double page spreads are never seen as such so much of the impact of a photo that shares the gutter space can never be revealed in its full glory. Furthermore, the pages of the mag is scrolled from top to bottom and not flipped from right to left like a real magazine.

I am sure there are other apps that do this quite well but I am looking at free apps for the time being. That said, GO does pretty well for free and I won’t be changing my mind about this app until I tire of it.

Any book I upload is stored in the SD card. That said, I can manage my space quite well without having to worry about it occupying valuable RAM storage or USB storage on the Phone. A larger screen does make it easier to read a book. Trust me. I still use my iPad to read books but never on a iPhone screen.

The GN comes a close second and this is what I am interested in. The Note is a tool and not a toy. If you want a toy, go buy an iPhone. There are loads of games for it. There is far more entertainment value for the iOS. If you are looking for serious work, the iPhone is a bad choice. Too many distractions and too small a screen to justify the price.

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