24 March 2014

The eMerging eReader #4: Apps and Sources

The eMerging eReader © www.BethFishReads.comOnce I bought my devices and loaded the needed software on my PC, it was time to figure out which tablet and phone apps I wanted to use and learn how to make the most of my dedicated eReader. Because apps and sources for reading material overlap considerably, this post covers both topics.

Proprietary apps. The first app to download is the one for your dedicated eReader. I like the Kobo app because it syncs phone, tablet, and reader so I can catch up on my current book wherever I am. [Although I don't use the Nook, Kindle, and iBook apps, you might be interested in setting up accounts so you can take advantage of sales and freebies.]

Readmill (with Dropbox). If you're looking for only one app to use on your tablet or phone, it's Readmill. I consider it to be a PDF miracle and the key to my eMerging eReading success. I love so many of the features: I can change font sizes and light level and I can search and highlight. Best of all, PDFs are formatted perfectly and don't go all wonky. Because I use Calibre as my master eBook file, I add books to Readmill via Dropbox, which is fast and easy. Readmill syncs between phone and tablet, making it a snap to read whenever I have a minute. Besides PDFs, I use Readmill for ePUBs that are graphic heavy, such as graphic novels and cookbooks. An added bonus: the hyperlinks in ePUBs work beautifully. [See the settings for other ways to add books and to explore the social media options.]

Zinio. My second favorite app on the tablet is Zinio, an eMagazine app. A few months ago, Zinio teamed up with libraries around the United States, giving patrons free online access to a variety of magazines. I love being able to read my favorite magazines without the clutter and expense. Even better, most of the magazines allow me print what I want, so I can take a recipe to the kitchen or a pattern to my craft room. This app works in tandem with a website, so if your library doesn't have Zinio, you can use it as a magazine service and pay for individual issues or eSubscriptions.

Magazine extras. Talking about magazines, have you ever explored their online extras? Several of my print subscriptions offer fantastic bonus material that is accessed (on iDevices) through the Newsstand app. Depending on the type of magazine, you'll find videos, extra articles, or additional recipes and photos. Don't miss out on the free-with-subscription bonuses. [Some newsletters also offer online extras or discounted digital-only subscriptions.]

Overdrive. If you download eBooks from your library, you might want the Overdrive app. This is simple to use and integrates with your library's eCollection. [I don't use it for eBooks, but have used it for audiobooks.]

Oyster. Finally, a post about eBooks wouldn't be complete without mentioning Oyster, which is available only for mobile iDevices. For a monthly fee ($10), you have access to an unlimited number of eBooks, which you can download and read via a proprietary app. If you're curious, sign up for a free trial. [I tried this service and decided it wasn't for me.]

Next up: Dealing with issues relating to reviewing, note taking, and remembering to read my eBooks, as my journey to becoming an eMerging eReader continues.

Acknowledgments: Besides those I've already thanked, I'd like to give a shout-out to @ReadersRespite, @StillUnfinished, @Vasilly, @BookishNerd, and @Dsaarien for directly or indirectly guiding me to the mentioned apps or to apps I tried and rejected.


(Diane) bookchickdi 3/24/14, 7:38 AM  

Your Ereader posts are so full of useful information. I am learning so much and realize how I am underutilizing my tablet apps. Great job!

SuziQoregon 3/24/14, 8:12 AM  

Gotta check out Readmill.

Marg 3/24/14, 8:35 AM  

I am not really using any apps on either my laptop or tablet other than Kindle app. The only other thing I do use is Calibre but I don't think that is an app as such.

Jenn's Bookshelves 3/24/14, 8:56 AM  

I think I've so happy with the apps I'm already using that I didn't even think of looking at others! I need to check out Readmill!

rhapsodyinbooks 3/24/14, 9:29 AM  

I looked at Readmill but I couldn't figure out what it does! ...I'm very technologically impaired....

Beth Hoffman 3/24/14, 10:01 AM  

You are now my eReader guru! I've got to check out Redmill.

Daryl 3/24/14, 11:29 AM  

i am sticking to my iPad/Nook app ... but this was fascinating ... thanks!

Heidi’sbooks 3/24/14, 12:17 PM  

My hubby uses Zinio to look at Consumer Reports from the library, while I tend to like my magazines in paper format. I love using Overdrive for audiobooks from the library on my Kindle Fire. My favorite reading apps on my phone are my Kindle and Nook apps.

Nise' 3/24/14, 3:19 PM  

I use Overdrive and like it. I want to check out Readmill.

Unknown 3/24/14, 3:51 PM  

I admit I kind of just went with what was easy and didn't question it. I will have to check out Readmill. I'm so not tech savvy and so I've just been using Blue Fire Reader on my iPad, I don't even use it on my phone, but I rarely read books on my phone. It would be a rare moment for me to leave the house without a book or device...ha ha.
Thanks so much, continuing to learn!!

Kim@Time2Read 3/25/14, 2:22 PM  

Great list! I have most of these, but I'm going to check out the ones I don't have yet!

Melissa (Avid Reader) 3/27/14, 9:04 AM  

Such a helpful list! The only one I use regularly is OverDrive for library audiobooks. I need to check out a few of those others.

Kailana 3/27/14, 11:49 AM  

hm. I really like my current app for review copies and such, but I should look into Readmill... It might be better. I have to admit I was so happy when I found a way to read pdf's I never browsed any further!

TP 3/30/14, 10:27 AM  

This is such an informative series of posts - love em! I haven't yet gotten around to Zinio since I'm not a big magazine reader, but I plan on checking it out.

Tanya Patrice

nishitak 4/1/14, 7:13 AM  

Gosh, all this is like Greek and Latin to me. I don't use e-readers but when I do, I must remember to visit your e-reader posts again.

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