With an 8" screen, the Pocketbook InkPad is the only mid-sized ereader on the market, so it doesn't quite have any direct competitors. But there are similarly priced ereaders like the T68 Lynx, so for the sake of the contrast I pulled out my T68 and set them side by side.
I reviewed the T68 Lynx extensively back in June, but I am still working on my review of the InkPad. In the long run this comparison review is intended to complement the main review.
There are eleven ways that these two ereaders differ, but the InkPad and T68 Lynx have a number of features in common, including the same storage options and similar audio support. Both devices have a headphone jack and can play MP3, and they also both support TTS in the ebooks you read. And both the T68 Lynx and the InkPad ship with 4GB internal storage, and they both have a microSD card slot, frontlight, touchscreen, and wifi.
- Design - The T68 Lynx has a cheap plastic case which feels and looks like it was slapped together around the electronics with little thought to how it would be to use. The InkPad, on the other hand, sports an intentionally unbalanced design which favors one handed operation (and since it is reversible, it's good for either hand). The plastic shell is slightly slick, but it also has a rubber pad on the back and a rubber strip on the front right under where you would expect to grip it while reading.
- Page Turn Buttons - Both devices have a single set of page turn buttons on one side of the screen, but the ones on the InkPad are easier to press when reading with one hand.
- Screen - The T68 Lynx has a 6.8" display with a screen resolution of 1,440 x 1,080, while the InkPad has an 8" display with a screen resolution of 1,600 x 1,200. The InkPad has a slightly larger and slightly less sharp screen (250 ppi vs 265 ppi), though I am not sure that anyone would really be able to tell the difference. But you will notice that the InkPad screen is IMO whiter than the screen on the T68 Lynx.
- Frontlight - The T68 Lynx has frontlight which is brighter than the one on the InkPad but also fuzzier. When both frontlights are turned on, the screen on the InkPad looks whiter and the text looks blacker.
- Software - The Lynx runs Android 4.0 on a 1GHz CPU, and comes with Google Play. The InkPad, on the other hand, runs Pocketbook's proprietary OS on a 1GHz CPU with 512MB RAM.
- Apps - While both devices do let you install apps, it's a lot easier to find apps in Google Play and install them than it is to install apps on the InkPad. With the latter device you are effectively limited to what it can do out of the box, but with the T68 you can also add support for Kindle, Comixology, Nook, Kobo, and Logos Bible software (just to name a handful).
- Apps Redux – And it’s not just ebooks. The T68 Lynx also offers the option if installing better web browsers as well as Audible, Pocket, Feedly, and other apps.
- Speed and Responsiveness - The T68 Lynx is somewhat faster at most activities, including turning the page, loading an ebook, and navigating the menus.
- eBook Formats - The InkPad lists more formats in its spec sheet, but that doesn't mean it offers broader support. For one thing, many of the listed ebook formats aren't well supported. But more importantly, the T68 Lynx can install apps, which means it can support just about any ebook app available in Google Play. For example, the InKPad offers better PDf support out of the box, but you can install RepliGo on the T68 Lynx. That is a much better app.
- Price and Availability - The T68 Lynx can be bought on Amazon for $199, while the InkPad costs over $240 and is difficult to acquire outside of Europe and Russia.
- Accessories - The T68 Lynx can work with external Bluetooth devices and it can accept USB mouses and keyboards. The InkPad is strictly an ereader.
When I last compared two ereaders (the Voyage vs the T68 Lynx) I thought it was pretty clear that one was significantly better than the other. I'm not so sure I can draw a similar conclusion with the T68 Lynx and the InkPad.
One has much better hardware, but the other has much better software as well as the potential of adding more features. While the better hardware on the InkPad contributes to a nicer reading experience, you can do more with the T68 Lynx.
So it is really a toss up which is better.
What do you think?