Toronto, Ontario − Consumers will be able to read e-books in the bathtub or at the beach without worry when Kobo ships what it calls the world’s first premium waterproof E Ink e-reader.
The Kobo Aura H2O will be available in black at a suggested $179 on the company’s web site and in stores starting Oct. 1 in Canada and the U.S. It will also be available that day in select European countries.
Beginning Aug. 28, select retailers will offer pre-ordering, and on Sept. 1, pre-orders will also be available at Kobo.com.
The Kobo Aura H2O features 6.8-inch HD touchscreen with upgraded Carta E Ink technology. It’s IP67-certified, making it waterproof if immersed in up to 1 meter of water for up to 30 minutes with its port cover closed. The e-reader is also dust-proof for beach reading, and its anti-glare display is suitable for outdoor reading in the sun.
It’s thinner and lighter than the company’s Aura HD e-reader and features upgraded HD display.
“When we asked our customers what held them back from reading more ebooks, many told us they love to read in the bath, by the pool, or on the beach but believed that devices and water didn’t mix,” said Kobo president/chief content officer Michael Tamblyn. ““As we dug deeper, we found that more than 60 percent of customers surveyed said they would love to be able read near water without worry.”
Display resolution is 1,430 by 1,080 with 265 ppi. Other key features include 1GHz processor, 4GB storage, 32GB microSD Card slot, web browser, picture viewing, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, chess and Sudoku games, and display of e-books in multiple formats.
The new model joins four other Kobo E Ink e-readers priced up to $149 and four color-screen Android tables with Google Play access.