Kobo Promises to Refund All Orders From the Kobo Mini Sale Fiasco

kobo miniKobo has proposed a very adequate solution to the mess resulting from last week’s bungled Kobo Mini sale.

As I reported yesterday, Kobo briefly ran a sale last week where they offered a new Kobo Mini with a Pearl screen and a gray knit sleepcover for $50.

Unfortunately for everyone, what Kobo had intended to sell (and all they ahd on hand) were old demo units with pink rubber shells. Since Kobo doesn’t have the units it listed on its website, it has instead decided to give everyone a refund.

Here is the official statement:

The Kobo Mini eReaders that were sold from November 3 to 7 in Canada and the US were devices produced for retail store demo environments. Although the eReaders were unused and in original, sealed packaging, the description onKobo.com should have explicitly stated that they were demo devices. This was an error and it was not Rakuten Kobo’s intention to mislead customers. As such, those who bought the Kobo Mini will automatically receive a full refund for the device and shipping costs, and are welcome to keep the device if they wish.  Rakuten Kobo apologizes for this unfortunate error and is working quickly to get booklovers back to reading.

If you bought a Kobo Mini in last week’s sale, contact customer service so you can get your refund. You might need to reference this post.

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. luvhilndr10 November, 2015

    I just got off the phone with customer service. He has been getting calls about this bundle, but said his department can’t do anything about it. He knew nothing about this official statement. Not surprised. Amazon customer service this isn’t. I was told that my case was escalated yesterday and to wait until I hear from them.

    1. Nate Hoffelder10 November, 2015

      It’s a mess, isn’t it?

  2. luvhilndr10 November, 2015

    Yeah, you could say that. He also said that their info shows that we mistakenly got the grey sleepcover when we should have gotten the red back plate. Oh how I wish. I really wanted that cover.

  3. […] Mittlerweile hat sich Kobo gegenüber The Digital Reader offiziell geäußert und will allen Käufern automatisch den Kaufpreis und die Versandkosten erstatten. Gleichzeitig […]

  4. DavidW10 November, 2015

    I have not received a refund yet. Well it said automatically.

    I haven’t heard back from the direct orders division yet, but they still have another day (I was given a 48 hour window). If I don’t hear back from them or receive a refund by tomorrow evening, I will call again to demand a refund.

  5. DavidW10 November, 2015

    And if that doesn’t work, I will be forced to dispute the charge.

    I was just coming back round to Kobo after buying the Glo HD. I really thought they have improved their UI, responsiveness, and ebook prices. But if they screw me over or give me the runaround I will be done with them for good.

    1. Nate Hoffelder10 November, 2015

      What went wrong with the Glo HD?

  6. Bill Bradford10 November, 2015

    Got an email today with my tracking number, and just now got the Paypal refund notification for the full amount!

  7. beth11 November, 2015

    I didn’t need to contact them–they refunded my account in full last night, and I get to keep the reader, which is holding a charge like a new one.

  8. DavidW11 November, 2015

    I guess I shouldn’t have said “really thought” it made it sound like I was having issues with the Glo HD. I’m not having any issues, it’s an awesome device. It’s just that if I receive bad customer service then I’m done. That is what happened with me and Nook.

    I’ve been issued a refund. It was bad of them (actually illegal right?) to falsely advertise a Kobo Mini model that didn’t exist and sent an old demo model complete with 2011 firmware and an old battery and no sleep cover.

    Thank you for digging into this and posting about it. I can’t help but think that made a difference in Kobo issuing those refunds.

  9. Anne11 November, 2015

    I’m still waiting for my refund. Getting a refund will alleviate my sudden animosity for Kobo. I hope they don’t delay too long. In the meantime, I’ve already updated my Mini to 3.18.0.

  10. Luvhilndr11 November, 2015

    I received a full refund also. I agree with DavidW in thinking that your posts about this issue most likely made a difference in how it was handled by Kobo. Thank you and keep up the good work!

    1. Nate Hoffelder11 November, 2015


  11. B&N to let NookGlowLight Plus display library books—but how about those from other bookstores? Kobo Mini sale runs into snags, too | TeleRead11 November, 2015

    […] the Kobo Mini, who thought they were buying new but actually were getting refurbished demo devices (refunds […]


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