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The 5″ eReader Isn’t Dead

redfox-wizlib-e-book-reader-1163-6966752-1-zoomSmaller ereaders like the Kobo Mini may have been relegated by many as collectibles or hacking projects, but they haven’t completely vanished from the retail market.

A post on MobileRead brought a "new" 5″ ereader to my attention.

The Wizlib 5 is the smallest of three ereaders offered by the Philippines-based Redfox.

Even though this company has been selling ereaders since 2010, it’s still hard to find info on Redfox hardware online but according to a deals site the Wizlib 5 has a keyboard, 2GB internal storage, a g-sensor, and a radio of some kind (FM, to be exact).

Its 5″ E-ink screen has a screen resolution of 600 x 800, and it does not have a touchscreen. But it does have that keyboard, although since we know nothing about the software we don’t know what it’s good for.

All in all this is a cheap ereader, and the deals site listed it for a cheap price: 1,500 PHP, or about $32. (The site also claimed that the regular retail was around $257, but these sites usually lie about that detail.)

So if you want a 5″ ereader, an option does still exist. But it’s going to be rather hard to buy outside of the Philippines; I can’t even find a local retailer who carries it, much less one which will ship internationally.

If you do find a way to get a WizLib 5 shipped, or if you have one yourself, please let me know. I’d like to know more about it.

Edit: A reader has told me that when this ereader was released five years ago, it really did cost that much. He also said that it supported mp3s, but had a non-standard headphone jack. And as you might suspect, it is a rebranded Chinese ereader, the Sibrary.

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Name (Required) August 15, 2016 um 10:57 am

The most important question is: Does it have a lit screen?

DavidW August 15, 2016 um 11:05 am

Your most important question is irrelevant. The most important question is availability. It doesn’t matter if it has a front light if you can’t even buy it.

I never understand the obsession that some have with the front light. I know that you own lamps. There is no way that you simply did not read before the invention of the ereader.

Nate Hoffelder August 15, 2016 um 11:20 am

I don’t think it’s actually available, no. I heard back from the original source on MobileRead and he said it was discontinued. (So this post was a goof.)

DavidW August 15, 2016 um 5:47 pm

That’s too bad. I can fit a six inch ereader in my pocket but I can fit a five inch one even better. Perfect for traveling, especially when I want long battery life which my phone can’t provide.

Anne August 16, 2016 um 6:47 am

Have you looked at the 5″ Kobo Mini?

DavidW August 16, 2016 um 7:17 am

@Anne: it has not been in production in years. I have one and battery is bad due to age and it’s just clunky and slow. I love the Kobo Glo HD and Aura H2O but the Kobo Mini is terrible.

Frank August 15, 2016 um 1:37 pm

I only got into e-reading once they had a built-in light, which was the first Paperwhite in 2012. It is very important to me that the device has its own light, rather than having to use a outside source.

Name (Required) August 15, 2016 um 3:32 pm

It is not an obsession. I have read paper books before e-books. *Lots* of them. Then I started using various old notebooks and obsolete PDAs(*), later I started to use the first generation of e-ink readers. Each of those were highly usable. Yet each new generation was an improvement. I only use front-light on my e-ink reader at the lowest levels. But when I switch the light completely off when reading in less than ideal conditions I see a significant difference.

(*) Old LCD screens shining light into my eyes were definitely not an improvement in terms of readability or reading comfort, but with e-books I suddenly had an over-abundance of high quality reading material in English. I live in a non-English speaking country and prefer to read in English.

Nate Hoffelder August 15, 2016 um 11:25 am

I don’t think E-ink ever made a 5″ screen with a frontlight.

Name (Required) August 15, 2016 um 3:42 pm

4.3″ Onyx Boox Inkphone does have a frontlight. Very lousy one, but it has.
So I can hope that somebody, someday will produce a front-lit 5″ e-ink reader with a small bezel that fits into the pocket like PB360 did.

Nate Hoffelder August 15, 2016 um 5:01 pm

Yes. I think the 4.7″ E-ink screens used for smartphones also has a frontlight.

Roberto August 16, 2016 um 9:55 am

The Onyx iself is lousy 😉 (in terms of speed and useability of its Android system) but the frontlight is actually quite great in my opinion. Sometimes they are still being offered on ebay…

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