Onyx Boox i86ML vs Pocketbook InkPad (video)

onyxboox i86ml pocketbook inkpad comparisonOnyx’s new 8″ ereader proved to be very disappointing when I reviewed a beta unit in late March, but the following video suggests that the production unit will be a lot better.

A new video showed up on Youtube yesterday which compares the the Boox i86 with the Pocketbook InkPad, only it doesn’t show the i86  model I reviewed earlier this year.

Instead, the video shows the i86ML, a model equipped with a frontlight. Onyx doesn’t currently offer this model, but the video was uploaded by  eReader Store and that suggests that it is going to be launched in the near future.

Let’s hope Onyx improved the software, because the hardware looks pretty good. The frontlight on the i86 looked evenly lit in the video, and had a natural tone.

The Pocketbook InkPad has been available in Europe since last year, but the Onyx Boox i86 has yet to be officially released. Onyx has released a limited number in China, and a handful of units have shown up on Amazon and Ebay, but it is technically not available yet.

Both models have the same 8″ E-ink display (1,600 x 1,200 screen resolution) but it is not clear that they have the same frontlight or touchscreen. My InkPad has a capacitive touchscreen, while the Boox i86 sitting on my shelf has an IR touchscreen from Neonode. The two devices also run different OSes; the InkPad runs Pocketbook’s version of Linux, while the Boox i86 runs Android 4.0.

Aside from the screen, these are two very different ereaders, and they are a couple of your very limited options for mid-sized ereaders.

Aside from the Kobo Aura H2O and the unusable Cybook Ocean, there is not much in the way of ereaders with screen sizes between the more common 6″ models and the rare 9.7″ ereader like the Onyx Boox M96 Universe.

The i86ML is not yet available anywhere (at least, not officially) but I’ll keep you posted when it turns up.

Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills weekly. 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.


  1. Manmeet Singh6 May, 2015

    Absolutely Awesome! Thanks for posting this video.

    I have waited this eReader for nearly 1 and a half years and i think it looks brilliant.
    I just wish that front-light isn’t too bright at the lowest level.

  2. Feda6 May, 2015

    And you can already order it from Alibaba. If you are willing to buy 2,000 or more units, that is.

    1. Nate Hoffelder6 May, 2015

      I’m not sure those listings are real.

  3. Joel8 May, 2015

    You can find the reader Onyx Boox i86ML here soon:

    1. Nate Hoffelder8 May, 2015


  4. Tomas10 May, 2015

    It’s not running Linus (even Linus Trovalds is created the linux kernel), it’s running linux 😉

    1. Nate Hoffelder10 May, 2015

      Do you suppose they could run Snoopy, instead of Linus? 🙂


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Scroll to top