Some News About the New Kobo Reader Firmware Update

Kobo announced on their blog this morning that the first phase of upgrades for Canadian Kobo Reader owners has gone well so far, and that the update will automatically be rolling out this week for everyone else in the US, Australia, and New Zealand.

If you own a Kobo eReader, at some point during the week you’ll be notified of a new version of the Kobo desktop application when you plug the reader into your computer. After installing the new desktop software, a wizard will pop up announcing the firmware v1.4 upgrade and will guide you through the process.

Some things to note about updating the Kobo’s firmware: you’ll need a paperclip to reset the Kobo Reader during the update; for Adobe Digital Editions users, you’ll have to re-authorize the Kobo Reader after the update is finished; and Windows users will be prompted to install new drivers that are required for the upgrade. More details can be found on Kobo’s blog.

Additionally, the Product Manager of Kobo posted an explanation of the new firmware features for the Kobo Reader over at Mobileread if you are interested in knowing why Kobo chose to add the new new sleep and power off functions that are rankling some Kobo eReader owners.

Here’s a snippet:

One of the things that’s very important to us is that your Kobo lasts as long as it possibly can. In discussions with our hardware team, we’ve discovered that anything longer than the options we’ve set would impact the lifetime of your battery. If we had longer settings, we would have to replace the battery well before the normal lifespan of your Kobo is up. That’s the last thing we want to do – we want you to enjoy using your Kobo as long as possible.

The one thing I will commit to doing is trying to speed up the ‘Boot from Off’ time. Our development team thinks are opportunities for big improvements there, and I think that’s the real concern here, and less about the sleep time.