Kobo Glow HD Review

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It is probably fair to say that the Kindle Oasis and Kindle Voyage are the most popular of the Kindle products. However, the Kobo Glo HD offers many of the same perks with a smaller price. If you are after a crisp, easy-to-read screen without all the bells and whistles, at a great price, the Kobo Glo HD is probably the best eReader for you.

How Does the Kobo Glo HD Work?

The Kobo Glo HD works like most other e-book readers. You download a book to the reader and can instantly access and “flip” through it as if it were an actual book. One of the things most users love about the Kobo eReader is its user-friendly interface. Based around a tiled view, everything you use regularly is displayed on the eReader’s home page, with your current book displayed in its own column on the left, and the middle and right columns changing and adapting to what you actually use.

The home page of the Kobo Glo HD gives links to the latest three books you’ve downloaded or transferred from a computer, plus your entire library.

There are two shortcuts to the bookstore for recommended and new release titles. Make sure you already have your payment information set up in your Kobo account to buy books faster and easier.

You can read the Kobo Glo HD anywhere. Unlike a tablet or smartphone, it’s easy to read the screen in bright sunlight without creating a glare. Like almost all eReaders, the Kobo Glo HD has a built-in light, which can be adjusted using an on-screen slider.

What Can You Read on a Kobo Glo HD?

Kobo’s store isn’t much different from Amazon’s Kindle store. With four million books, newspapers and magazines, the Kobo Bookstore is well-stocked. Books are not the only things you can read on your Kobo Glo HD. Its read-later web app “Pocket” makes this an eReader that’s about far more than just books. If you enjoy reading reviews and long-form articles on the web, you can open a Pocket account, integrate it into a browser and everything saved will be visible on the Kobo Glo HD. Essentially, almost anything you can read on a smartphone, tablet or any computer, you can save to Pocket, and then access it on the Kobo Glo HD later.

Newspapers: You can’t get newspaper subscriptions, which aren’t built into Kobo in the same way as most Amazon products. Instead, there’s Pocket integration. If you use this it lets you save web content to read later, and it can be synced to this eReader.

Magazines: Kobo’s content options do have some limitations. While subscriptions for magazines like Time and Vanity Fair are available, services like sharing support and subscription options from major newspapers are unavailable. Again Pocket allows you to open your favorite magazines online and save them to read later.

Comic Books: Kobo also has a wide range of comic books that you can download and read on your Kobo Glo HD.

PDFs: You can upload your own PDFs to your Kobo to add to your library so you can access them when you need them. You can either use a USB port to transfer the files or use the Send-to-Kindle app. Since eReaders do better with black and white text, complex PDFs might not convert as well. However, many users found that the Kobo Glo HD did not handle PDFs as well as other eReaders.

Common Kobo Glo HD Reviews

Users of the Kobo Glo HD universally agree that the Glo is extremely easy, and on-screen text was sharp with virtually no pixelation.

With its midrange price tag and catalog limitations, the Kobo Glo HD has a modest performance ceiling. Still, a strong display and decent build quality make the Kobo Glo HD worth considering.

Is Kobo Glo HD Right For You?

Whether the Kobo Glo HD is right for you comes down to how you are going to use it and what you are looking for. Here are few questions to ask yourself.

Do I need a high-resolution eReader? If so, Kobo Glo HD is the perfect choice. Of all the high-res eReaders, it is among the least expensive, which makes it a good bargain. It has a 1448×1072 resolution and 300 ppi density, which makes it very easy to read. If you read more comic books or graphic novels, this is probably a better option for you.

Do you want to use your eReader on the go? Kobo Glo HD allows for 4G connectivity, so if you opt in for the data plan, you can take it anywhere you want and still be connected. You don’t need to be connected to the internet to read books you’ve already downloaded; the 4G is only needed to access books and publications from the cloud, buy new books or download books to your Kobo Glo HD.

Do you read at night? Night-time reading is easy with the front-lit Kobo models. It lights the screen with a smooth, even glow, with a slider control that allows you to adjust the brightness of the screen. If the light is the deciding factor between Kobo and another product, it is a safe bet to go with Kobo.

The Kobo Glo HD is easy to hold in one hand and small enough to slip into a coat pocket. It is also the most book-like e-ink page ever created. The battery is months-long, and the availability of books and media from various sources is appreciated. Allowing any web page to be saved and read later, the Pocket App makes the Kobo Glo HD into a eReader that’s about far more than just books.

About the Author

Jeff Hindenach

Jeff Hindenach is the co-founder of Versus Reviews. He graduated from Bowling Green State University with a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism. He has a long history of journalism, with a background writing for newspapers such as the San Jose Mercury News and San Francisco Examiner, as well as writing for The Huffington Post, New York Times, Business Insider, CNBC, Newsday and The Street. He believes in giving readers the tools they need to get out of debt.