Australian book lovers will have to hold out until February 2015 before they can buy the world’s first waterproof eReader from Kobo.
The latest eReader from the content company ships IP67 certified, which means it is resistant to water and dust. However, the late on-sale date will preclude most Australians from using the eReader at the beach this summer.
Kobo Australia’s director, Malcolm Neil, said demand for a waterproof eReader led to the H2O’s development.
“We found that some of our customers avoided taking eReaders to the beach or reading in the bath because they were worried about water damage.
“We wanted to break down that barrier.”
The 6.8-inch eReader can be submerged in freshwater a metre deep for 30 minutes, although the charging port must be closed.
Water can falsify screen selections. The H2O gets around this by pausing the session and asking readers to wipe the screen clean.
No concessions have been made in waterproofing the Kobo eReader. Compared to its predecessor, the Kobo Aura HD, the H2O retains a similar feature set.
Its 6.8-inch, E-ink touchscreen has a high 1430x1080 resolution display. The screen has a 265dpi and is evenly backlit.
The eReader is powered by a 1GHz CPU and can hold 3000 eBooks with its 4GB of internal storage. Adding a 32GB microSD can increase the number of eBooks to 30,000.
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Kobo claims the Aura H2O’s battery can last two months, although this figure is based on daily reading sessions just 30 minutes long.
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The Kobo Aura H2O will go on sale online and at JB Hi-Fi in February of 2015 for $229. Other retailers will follow, including Myer, Harvey Norman, Angus & Robertson and Bookworld.