Jetbook Color Updated – iPad Still a Better Value

Ectaco rolled out another in their series of monthly updates on Monday (download it here). While the update does add a few minor improvements, the Jetbook Color is still not worth buying.

It's been just over a month and a half since I last covered the Jetbook Color, which means I missed an update. It was still on loan at the time, and I just got it back a few days ago.

So, the update adds a faster page turns, several new workbook templates, and optional delayed refresh on page turns (3rd or 5th turns). Text to speech is finally working, and it sounds nice. Of course, this is one of Ectaco's expertise, so I'm not surprised. The Jetbook Color is also supposed to gain speech recognition in this update, but I don't see a way to enable it. And just to confirm, the page turns are faster, this is true. But they're still slower than on the Kindle DX.

Those are some nice features, but they don't amount much when you consider what this device cannot do. For a quick summary you can look at the front of the box. This device cannot do anything pictured there, not the highlighting, attached notes, underlining - nothing. Oh, and the screen image is a lie. The actual screen is far grayer than pictured.

Wifi was enabled a couple months back, but it doesn't like my network. Also, Ectaco still hasn't enabled the web browser so even if the Wifi worked I still wouldn't be able to do anything with it.  There's still no sleep mode, so I consider myself lucky that Ectaco boasts about the battery life.

All in all, the Jetbook Color is not worth getting on 3 May 2012. This may change as more updates are released, but my opinion right now is that the iPad is the better buy.

Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader: He's here to chew bubble gum and fix broken websites, and he is all out of bubble gum. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills at the drop of a hat. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.

7 Comments

  1. […] On commence par la Jetbook Color qui est une liseuse couleur dont nous vous avions déjà parler il y a quelques mois. La société Ectaco qui commercialise ce eReader vient de mettre à jour le logiciel. La Jetbook Color tourne les pages plus vites, peut lire vos livres à haute voix (fonctionnalité « Text to speech ») et il semble qu’un embryon de reconnaissance vocale ai été aussi ajoutée. (source) […]

    Reply
  2. Pete-a-nator.4 May, 2012

    Value, you keep using that word. It does not mean what you think it means. As a college student I value my freedom to download books from where I want. I value the fact that Ectaco isn’t forcing me to buy books and apps from them. I value the apps already on the jetbook. I value my wallet (yay for ectaco student discount). I value my privacy. And finally I value my eyesight. {Nate do you wear glasses}?

    This is what I value.

    I’m an American, I’m not a sheep. This is why I chose a jetbook color.

    Reply
    1. Nate Hoffelder4 May, 2012

      Yes, I wear glasses. I have needed them since I was a freshman in high school. My prescription hasn’t changed in 10 years so I know that staring at LCD screens hasn’t harmed my eyes any.

      This ability to download ebooks from where you want, does that include the Kindle Store? How about B&N? I guess the Jetbook Color isn’t as open as you claim. Perhaps you should get an Android tablet. Like the iPad they too do far more than the Jetbook Color, and there are several premium models that actually cost less than the Jetbook Color.

      P.S. My recommendation above is intended for schools who are thinking of buying this POS and distributing it to their students. The iPad does more for the same cost, which is why I say it is a better value.

      Reply
  3. SteveR4 May, 2012

    I’m sorry, but Nate’s out of the loop. He sold out a long time ago writing about the iPad over things people actually need or might look for.

    Ad revenue or reality?

    The B&N glowlight looks phenominal (i have the original) and even other sites say its great…not Nate. And the jetBook Color (also have it) – absolutely stunning for my daughter in high school. Her school purchased them last month and Im thankful shes actually using it to study and not play games (iPad).

    You really need to re-evaluate devices based on their market Nate…or you might just be getting old.

    Reply
    1. Nate Hoffelder4 May, 2012

      So you think my opinion is worth enough for someone to want to buy? Thanks for the compliment!

      Reply
    2. KW5 May, 2012

      Steve, how do you think the Jetbook Color would look with the Glow Light. Do you think it would help with the grey-green background?

      I have an iPad and wouldn’t have a problem spending $500 on a large color eInk reader if it had the speed and options I want.

      Reply
  4. […] you like but I’m not sure you need to; it basically says what I wrote 3 months ago and again last week.There is almost nothing to recommend about the $499 Ectaco JetBook Color. We are happy someone is […]

    Reply

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