Some Facts about the Kobo Vox e-reader/Android Tablet [Updated]

There are a few things you should know before you buy this device.

  1. It does not support the Google Android Market place. The marketing materials are deceptive in this regard, as I bought this device under the impression that I would have access to the Android Marketplace. It ships with a bookmark to http://kobo.getjar.com, which is, to put it mildly, a little bit less than helpful. A consequence of this fact is that you cannot easily install your favourite apps..
  2. You don’t even get the official Gmail app, and you cannot add your Google Account to the device for syncing. You again get a silly bookmark to the mobile web version of Gmail. The device does ship with an Email application, which seems to be the stock generic email app for android, and that should theoretically support Gmail, but I have not tested it.
  3. The device is chargeable via Micro-USB, but it refuses to work with the USB charger for my Samsung Galaxy S. Forcing me to keep two USB chargers on my desk. I don’t know who is violating the USB Standard here, Samsung or Kobo.
  4. The device is slightly heavier than one would expect in the hand.
  5. The loudspeaker is not nearly competitive with a decent smartphone. Get yourself a pair of headphones if you plan on using it for multimedia. A small amplifier may even be necessary, as the loudness leaves a lot to be desired, especially if you have to use it while commuting.
  6. Coming from a nice smartphone, the screen of the Kobo Vox is noticeably less crisp, but does not really constitute an inconvenience.
  7. Yes, you can play Angry Birds (it is available from the Getjar Store).
  8. The web browsing experience is considerably improved after you install the Dolphin web browser and make it the default.
  9. I like the rewards scheme, where you get “virtual” rewards for achievements and other reading related activities.
  10. Reading PDFs with the psychologically addictive (due to the rewards scheme, and the ease with which you can intimidate your friends on facebook) Kobo reader app is rather hit and miss. I side-loaded (grabbed off the Web) Aldiko, which handles PDFs just fine, and is even capable of downloading from Oreilly and other DRM-free ebook stores directly.
  11. You can play videos, but you will get a better experience if you install a file manager and browse your videos using it, rather than the default Gallery app. You can get a file manager from the GetJar Store.

You can find more information about the Kobo Vox here: http://www.kobobooks.com/kobovox .

  1. It bothers me that kobo does not seem to give a @#&* for their clients I have contacted them for help several times about setting up my email on my kobo vox ereader and all I get back is a repition of the same steps that I have tried over and over with the same failed result. Will someone at kobo even read this?

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