Kobo Glo, Kobo Mini, and Kobo Arc Tablet Incoming

Kobo Glo, Kobo Mini, and Kobo Arc

Kobo just announced a compelling new line of ereaders coming out this October, two ebook readers with monochrome E Ink screens and a tablet that runs open Android 4.0.

First up is the Kobo Mini. It’s the lightest and smallest E Ink ebook reader and is designed to “fit in your pocket” thanks to its smaller 5-inch screen. Better yet, it comes with a wallet-friendly price of $79.

For specs, the Kobo Mini comes with 2GB of internal storage, with 1GB available for content. It has WiFi, a touchscreen, a Freescale 508 800 MHz processor, and a battery that lasts for 2-4 weeks. It comes in black or white with options for three interchangeable backs in Ruby Red, Teal, and Purple. The Kobo Mini weighs just 4.73 ounces (134 grams) and measures 4″ x 5.2″ x .41″ (101.6 x 133.1 x 10.3 mm).

One interesting detail, the specs say it uses a Vizplex V110 display. That’s an older design that doesn’t have quite as good contrast as newer Pearl displays. It will be interesting to see what it looks like in person.

Regardless, it’s good to see Kobo bring back 5-inch ebook readers; there haven’t been any for the past couple years since Sony stopped making their “Pocket” ereaders.

The Kobo Glo (no “w”) is Kobo’s answer to the GlowLight Nook Touch. The Kobo Glo has a 6″ E Ink screen with built-in “ComfortLight” technology to illuminate the display in the dark. Better yet, the Kobo Glow uses an HD screen with a resolution of 1024 x 768.

Other features for the Kobo Glo include a 1GHz processor, WiFi, touchscreen, and a microSD card slot for cards up to 32GB. The battery life is rated at over 1 month with the light off and up to 55 hours of continuous reading with the light turned on.

The Kobo Glo sells for $129 and comes in different color options: Black Night, Pink Sunset, Blue Moon, and Silver Star.

As for Kobo’s new tablet, the Kobo Arc, it looks pretty interesting too. It comes with a 7″ high resolution 1280 x 800 IPS screen and has a dual-core 1.5 GHz processor with 1 GB of RAM, dual front-facing speakers, a 2MP front-facing camera, headphone jack, and 10 hour battery life. The Kobo Arc can also connect to a TV with a WiFi Direct A/V adapter.

The Kobo Arc runs open Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich and comes with access to Google Play for apps and digital content.

The Kobo Arc comes in black or white and there are two different models, one with 8GB of storage space and one with 16GB of storage space. The former sells for $199 and the latter sells for $249.

Kobo sure picked an interesting time to announce their new line of ereaders, the dawn of the day in which Amazon is going to officially unveil new Kindles. Amazon gets a lot more press coverage than Kobo so it’s actually a pretty good strategy because now most sites posting about the new Kindles will inevitably compare them with Kobo’s new offerings.

More info about Kobo’s new ereaders can be found on Kobo’s website.

13 Responses to “Kobo Glo, Kobo Mini, and Kobo Arc Tablet Incoming”

  1. All very interesting, indeed.

    I agree about the curious time and date to announce … maybe they already have some data about Amazon, and their new screen (6″ HD should be one fo them, this time, yes!)

    Someone knows if Kobo has used or will use Android over some ereader for rooting? Would be interesting.

    What do you think about their technical specs in their website and notes like “non-glass screen”, “ultra-thin”, “durable” , “not even under brightest sunligh” .. being Pearl XGA one from E Ink?

    Amazon to follow. Regards.

    • At first I thought maybe they were using the new flexible plastic displays but then if you read closely it says non-glass touchscreen so I think it’s mostly just marketing jive.

  2. HD E INK SCREENS! You know me Nathan, I am super excited. I can’t wait till I hear what Bezos has to say as well.

  3. Andrew, Mr. Bezos has made your day and he didn’t even have to speak to an empty chair. The new Kindle e-reader has a HD screen with some sort of patented backlight that Nathan will get to the bottom of.

    • Amazon is trying to be coy but I’m pretty sure it’s just a regular HD E Ink screen with a front light. I guess it has 4 LEDs, one less than the Nook Glow.

    • Yes Jim, I am super excited. I was probably the first person to order the Paperwhite. I refreshed the amazon homepage until the order screen showed up 🙂

  4. Nathan, will your Top 5 list change soon? The two Kindles for Best Value and Best Basic, the Sony for Best Advanced, truly proper picks. Kobo Touch for Best Alternative, I can see why but I’d personally prefer instead any one of the cheap new LED tablets, one reason being Kobo lacks a landscaoe mode. Nook Touch and Nook Glow are up there, as one reader that comes in two flavors. Nook and Sony have been the most interesting since various rootings have tested their capabilities.

    After all the newest models come out, I’d like to know which one would be the best to use right away and expand upon later, and whether or not Android helps.

    • Yeah that top 5 list is going to need a major redo in about 1 month. I’m going make a new one for 7″ color ereaders (tablets) too.

  5. But if the Arc is running native IC does that mean that you can Nook and Kindle apps without rooting?

  6. I just wanted to point out that a couple of comments got deleted that were posted yesterday the 7th of September. I apologize and don’t want those who’s comments were deleted to think they are being censored or anything. I just moved this blog to better hosting so it would load faster and a few of the comments got lost during the transition.

  7. World’s Smallest eReader with 1.8″ screen, works good:

    Kobo isn’t the smallest.