Last week I posted about the size difference between the 7.8-inch Kobo Aura One and 6-inch Kindles.
Today I put together a video review for an in-depth look at how the Kobo Aura One compares to the Kindle, specifically the Kindle Paperwhite 3, the most popular Kindle.
I’m not going to be posting any comparisons between the Kindle Voyage and Kindle Oasis because it would just be repeating 95% the same thing as this comparison.
All three Kindles, the Paperwhite, Voyage, and Oasis have the exact same 300 ppi E Ink Carta screen, the same exact software, the same processor, RAM, and storage space.
The only real difference is the Voyage adds page sensor buttons and an auto-adjusting frontlight.
And the Kindle Oasis adds physical page buttons and a tapered design, with a specialized charging cover.
Both the Oasis and Voyage have a flush glass screen like the Kobo Aura One, but none of the Kindles are waterproof like the Kobo.
The Kindle Voyage has a slight edge in text clarity over all of them, probably something to do with the micro-etched glass, but it’s a very minor difference.
The Kindles all have 6-inch E Ink screens whereas the Kobo Aura One has a 7.8-inch E Ink screen.
All have high resolution Carta screens with 300 ppi, except the entry-level Kindle which uses older screen tech with only 167 ppi.
The larger screen adds about 1 and an 1/8-inch to the width of the screen and 1 and 3/8 to the height.
One of the main things that separates the Kobo Aura One from the Kindles is the fact that you can control the color temperature of the frontlight. It has a natural light mode to filter out blue light. This adds a orange color to the light, or you can have it more blue—it’s your choice.
The Aura One also has a light sensor to automatically adjust the frontlight, like the Kindle Voyage. It seems to be rather touchy, adjusting with every slight shadow that passes the screen, so I don’t really care for it much and keep it turned off.
As mentioned in just about every Kobo vs Kindle comparisons review that I’ve done, one of the biggest differences with Kobo’s software is they offer more font choices and font sizes, with a custom boldness slider, and they offer more layout tools and you can sideload TTF and OTF fonts.
Kindles have less font options but they have more software features than Kobo’s, including a vocabulary builder, X-Ray, word wise, multiple page scan, advanced bookmarks, highlights and notes can easily be exported, and there’s the audio adapter for VoiceView and text-to-speech. Plus things like PDFs work a lot smoother; Kobo’s PDF support is a weak link—even the larger screen can’t help with that.
The Kindles all have 4GB of internal storage space and the Aura One has 8GB. None have a memory card slot, and they all have the same 1GHz processor and the same amount of RAM.
Overall speed and performance is similar at times but Kindles are better optimized and perform a little faster and more reliably. Page turns are faster, menus open quicker, books load faster, scrolling is smoother, and general reaction time is quicker.
As shown in the video, I have some problems with the Kobo Aura One’s capacitive touchscreen not responding well at times. And things like scrolling, highlighting, and pinch-zooming are really laggy and hard to use, whereas the Kindles don’t have problems like that.
The Paperwhite weighs 205 grams and the Aura One weighs 230 grams. The Paperwhite measures 169 x 117 x 9.1 mm and the Aura One measures 195.1 x 138.5 x 6.9 mm.
Other Kobo and Kindle Comparisons
Kobo Aura One – $229 from Kobo
Kindle Paperwhite – $119 and up from Amazon
Kindle Voyage – $199 and up from Amazon
Kindle Oasis – $289 and up from Amazon