First Impressions of the Boyue T62 Android eReader
After 3 weeks of impatient waiting, my newest ereader has finally arrived.
The Boyue T62 is the next gen follow on to the T61, aka the Icarus Illumina, aka my preferred ebook reader. According to the specs it has twice the storage and audio support with basically all the same buttons, ports, and card slots as the T61 (more details here).
Now that it is sitting on my desk, I can tell you that the T62 is a somewhat thicker and somewhat heavier sibling to the T61, and that the T62 has a sleeker and more curved design.
The T62 is on the left, aand on the right is the T61 which I reviewed last month.
Most importantly , I can also say that it has a somewhat improved frontlight. This last is not as good as on last year’s Kindle Paperwhite, but it is noticeably less splotchy and more evenly white than the frontlight on the T61.
In use, the T62 is more responsive than the T61. It seems to either have a better touchscreen or a better driver for the touchscreen, but either way it works better.
Speaking of which, I have also been playing around with the software. While the T62 and the T61 both run Android 4.2.2, they do not run the same firmware. I’ve already noticed that the newer model has a couple features that I don’t have on the T61, including the option to remove the taskbar from the bottom of the screen. (I think there is supposed to be a trick to make it pop up, but I can’t figure out how.)
And while we’re on the topic of software, does anyone want me to test any Android apps?
I was thinking of repeating the tests I ran for the T61. Or do you think it is safe to assume the T62 can run all the same apps as the T61?
The T61 was already my preferred ebook reader; I like the page turn buttons, case, and the ability to install Android apps. But after a day I think I may have found a replacement. It’s a shame I didn’t also order a case; I think the T62 could be a permanent addition to my gear bag.
A full review will be up the weekend after next. Until then, here is a demo video from Banggood, the Chinese retailer which sold me my T62. (You can also find the T62 on Amazon.)
Kate October 13, 2014 um 9:09 pm
Is all the internal memory available for apps? Can apps be run from the SD card?
Nate Hoffelder October 13, 2014 um 9:22 pm
I haven’t had a chance to test the T62 fully, but with the t61 I installed a couple dozen apps before I ran out of room.
I can see in the T62 that I have about a GB for apps, and another partition of about 5.7GB for storage.
aus October 14, 2014 um 8:41 am
Is this the same as the new Icarus Illumina HD (E653) available .
Nate Hoffelder October 14, 2014 um 9:00 am
The E653 is the older model.
aus October 14, 2014 um 9:31 am
Isn’t the old model the E652?
Nate Hoffelder October 14, 2014 um 9:35 am
Okay, let me clarify.
The E652 was released last year. The E653 was released earlier this year and reviewed by me. The Boyue T62 is the next one.
Feda October 14, 2014 um 1:21 pm
Might just be a Boyue model and not something that Icarus will come out with.
Andrew October 14, 2014 um 10:54 am
Can you provide a link to the site you bought yours from? I am a bit leary of searching for "Chinese bang good" while at work … 🙂
Nate Hoffelder October 14, 2014 um 11:23 am
Feda October 14, 2014 um 3:29 pm
It’s the best site name ever. Gave us so many laughs 🙂
purple lady October 14, 2014 um 11:34 am
I have a T62 and did the update for the E653. I am wondering if that is what caused a page size problem in Kobo and Overdrive. The problem is immediately noticeable in the Kobo app – the text runs over the right hand side and the controls on the right side can’t be accessed either. Can you install the Kobo app and see if a book has the proper page size?
Nate Hoffelder October 14, 2014 um 11:58 am
I am having trouble getting the Kobo app to activate; the T62 doesn’t like my Wifi network. I’m going to have to get back to you on this one.
purple lady October 14, 2014 um 12:16 pm
I had trouble with my wifi too. I set a static IP address and it’s fine at home and elsewhere.
Steve Retka October 14, 2014 um 11:38 am
How do the Evernote and Pocket apps perform? Thanks!
Juli Monroe October 14, 2014 um 1:06 pm
Every time you review one of these, I think, "Hmm…" However, they all seem to run pre-KitKat versions of Android, and I love immersive mode too much. So my question to you is, do you even notice the lack of immersive mode?
I’d love to have Instapaper and Pocket on my eInk reader.
Nate Hoffelder October 14, 2014 um 1:40 pm
TBH I don’t understand why some people like it so much, so i can’t say that I’ve missed it.
Why do you like it?
Juli Monroe October 14, 2014 um 2:46 pm
I like getting rid of the black band at the top and bottom of the screen and using the entire screen for reading. More words per page means a couple fewer page turns. Plus it just looks better.
Nate Hoffelder October 14, 2014 um 3:07 pm
The stock reading app on the T62/T61 has an immersive mode (as do most e-ink ereaders). I have been happy with it so I haven’t confirmed just how many of the 3rd-party reading apps also have this mode.
I know some don’t, but I’d have to check to make sure which ones.
Juli Monroe October 14, 2014 um 3:11 pm
Kindle, Scribd, Play Books, Moon+ and FBReader are the ones I know support it. I just checked, and it looks like Mantano, BlueFire and Aldiko don’t yet. I also don’t think Nook or Kobo support it.
Guillaume October 14, 2014 um 5:47 pm
Are you saying the backlight is as good as the Paperwhite first gen ?
I’m curious about the autonomy, the Pocket and Kindle applications.
Nate Hoffelder October 14, 2014 um 5:56 pm
Better than the 2012 KPW, I think. (That frontlight had so many issues that Amazon offered a no questions asked replacement policy.)
NJA October 15, 2014 um 11:10 am
Does the google play store come preloaded on the device or do you have to root it somehow to gain access?
Nate Hoffelder October 15, 2014 um 11:36 am
There’s no Google Play. But I did get Amazon Appstore installed. Also, I was able to sideload most of the apps I wanted.
Purple Lady October 15, 2014 um 3:10 pm
There’s a great guide to rooting and installing Google Play at MobileRead – http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=245888
Nate Hoffelder October 23, 2014 um 7:04 pm
That is a good guide, but it’s just too much work for me.
For those who are following this thread, sorry about the slacking off. I’m planning to install Android apps tonight and run through all (most?) of the ones I installed on the Illumina.
Unfortunately, my T62 doesn’t like my library’s Wifi any more than it liked my home Wifi. That’s going to hamper my ability to set up some of the reading apps and test the web browsers.
Paul October 22, 2014 um 5:03 am
Hey. I’m interested in one because of all those reading apps, but also I would like to do some typing on one, like on Noon Simple Touch. You did ask about apps to test. Could you give Jota and Jota+ a shot; maybe also dtype and Writer (simple notepad app). Maybe Jotterpad and WPS Office (Kingston) from more advanced. And how about Random House dictionary, free Merriam-Webster or some other one? Simple RSS Reader? Sorry to inundate you with requests, but maybe you could test a few. All those are free and can be downloaded from outside Play.
Would the touchscreen be responsive and well-calibrated enough to do some prolonged typing? I know that Onyx T68 has a lousy touchscreen.
And one more thing: is there a cell standby process running by any chance, eating battery life? Some Onyxes had that. Maybe there could be some processes tuning/killing/renaming done to improve battery life (whatever it is).
Peadar October 30, 2014 um 9:00 pm
You kindly offered to test an app?
If the offer is still open, could you try TuneIn Radio?
If it works then that would be a dream combo for me, reading multiple ebook formats by day, listening to radio from around the world by night (and all on the same device?)
Nate Hoffelder November 1, 2014 um 2:06 pm
It works fine, and it even plays in the background while I’m using another app. Turning it off was also easy, although I had to load the app again to do that.
Peadar November 4, 2014 um 8:24 pm
Thanks for doing this test.
Delighted to hear that TuneIn radio works.
I think ill order one up…
Ramil November 2, 2014 um 11:10 pm
Thanks for thorough answers, great job. Would you be so kind as to try running Bookmate app on t62, haven’t found anybody in Russia to test it. Good reads!
Nate Hoffelder November 3, 2014 um 5:29 am
(Strange, my comment was eaten.)
Bookmate installs and loads. I don’t have an account so I can’t test further.
anon January 1, 2015 um 3:42 pm
I am curious to know if the PageTurner app works well?
anon January 1, 2015 um 4:52 pm
Also am curious to know what the weight is for this. I’m comparing it to the Onyx C67 which weights ~225g (similar to my old Nook simple touch at 212g) and am curious if the T62 would feel substantially heavier or not.
Nate Hoffelder January 1, 2015 um 6:34 pm
One source says that the T62 costs 173 grams. I think that figure is inaccurate; my unit feels heavier than a Kindle Paperwhite.
And I haven’t had a chance to test that app yest, but I will try to get to it.
a January 1, 2015 um 6:58 pm
Hi, thank you I appreciate your help!
Another question – can apps be installed to the microSD card? Or is that only for files? Some of my apps store the files they work with within the app data itself, and so can become quite large. I do not think it would all work on the internal storage very well, but if the app can be installed to the SD card all is good.
Is this possible?
Nate Hoffelder January 1, 2015 um 10:10 pm
I haven’t tested whether I can move apps to a microSD card, but I can move apps from the internal 1GB partition to the internal 5.74GB partition.
Clark January 6, 2015 um 3:00 am
Hi Nate, could you please test the app "AnkiDroid"? I would like to learn new languages 🙂
Thanks in advance!
Kelvin o February 14, 2015 um 5:47 am
t62 absolutly is not good product for reader,compared with kindle,its touchscreen accuracy is disaster for end user. even turn a page,after reading a while, it is not responsive, you press one or twice to get page turned ,perhaps you must use the button to turn it. it is touchscreen, i do think their technology is still left behind by kindle.
greroige February 16, 2015 um 11:59 am
so is the t 62 review abandonded?
if not, any plans when are we going to be able to read it?
thanks in advance
Nate Hoffelder February 23, 2015 um 7:10 am
Yes, it is. Sorry.