Gone are the days of fame for mobile readers because Android tablets with their multifunctional and comprehensive OS have replaced the portable devices that aimed at reading eBooks only. The number of eBook reader apps for Android devices is overwhelming, so let us focus on the top choices and editor’s picks on Google Play, and see what the best of the best have to offer.
My personal choice falls on Moon+ Reader Pro, but it is not the leading software, with Kindle and Nook, Google Play Books and Aldiko competing for the bigger share of users. Today, we shall focus on the free applications anyone can get on Google Play in terms of their support of different eBook formats and customization options for better reading experience.
Google Play obviously puts Google Play Books atop all the other eBook readers for Android, but let us see if it definitely is the best eBook reader. Google Play Books has a wide range of both free and paid eBooks available in the app, over three million titles, to be specific, and that is an impressive figure. However, let us not forget that some three years ago every gardener and his dog thought they were able to earn a fortune on eBooks, and so the eBook boom began, flooding the market with cheap and fairly valuable eBooks. Hence, quantity does not equal quality, but can actually stand in your way when you are trying to find a good read.
In terms of features, Google’s native app has a wide range of features anyone would expect in a decent eBook reader. Depending on whether you need it or not, the sync feature may be a decisive point on your checklist. As everything in Google, your eBooks get synchronized across devices you use your Google account in. This may be cool to be able to start a book on a tablet, continue reading it on your smartphone or laptop. For offline reading, the app supports ePub and PDF which is far from ample, so this is a Con.
Kindle is a stiff competitor to GP Books, with a tablet of their own, Amazon Kindle Fire and its younger siblings. Readers love Kindle for a large library full of great choices and a comprehensive reader experience. As in Google Play Books, Kindle offers a variety of free eBooks you can download and read on your smartphone or tablet. It is also easy to shop for paid books, and since Amazon is one of the best marketplaces for cool stuff, you are sure to find the world’s bestsellers appearing on Amazon as soon as they hit the market.
Kindle app for Android devices supports HTML5, CSS3, scalable vector graphics, fixed layouts, drop caps, as well as Pane Views that enable amazing experience reading fixed layout books, such as comics and graphic novels.
You can also sync your books and bookmarks across your devices, customize font size, background color. Screen brightness and orientation, as well as read print replica textbooks, which is especially useful for students.
NOOK by Barnes and Noble
One of the greatest publishing houses, Barnes and Noble, reaches out to its loyal clientele on Android with their Nook app. Millions of titles in books and magazines, a wide range of subscription editions and a rich plethora of features grant this app a choice in our favorite eBook readers list. Of course, you can get lots of free eBooks, and free book samples, customize font sizes and styles, brightness, line spacing, and sync your books across your devices. You can also add bookmarks and notes as you read, as well as look up words in dictionaries you can download directly from the app.
Nook supports EPUB and CBZ files in English, Spanish, French, Italian and German. A special feature NOOK Comics sports a convenient zoom view for better reading experience.
Moon Reader deserves a rightful place on the list because it is extremely intuitive and comprehensive for a free app. It supports epub, mobi, chm, cbr, cbz, umd, fb2, txt, html, rar, zip and OPDS formats, as well as EPUB3, which makes it a perfect offline reader for books you download from places other than Google Play library, or Barnes and Noble. The greatest feature is txt support, which means you can literally convert any book to txt and read it with perfectly customizable styles ample for any time of the day or night.
Moon Reader supports online libraries so you can get lots of free eBooks, but high customizability makes it a top-notch choice available for free. You can also backup and restore your library to DropBox, which is nice for DropBox users unwilling to have multiple accounts to sync their files. I personally love the dual page mode you can turn on in landscape screen, a perfectly old-fashioned way of reading.
Moon Reader supports 40 languages, which significantly widens its audience.
Aldiko boast of over 16 million downloads on Google Play and supports epub, pdf and Adobe DRM encrypted eBooks. With Aldiko, you can customize font size, type and color, as well as background, brightness, alignment, margin and all those little things that make reading either pleasant, or tiresome, except for the contents of your book, of course. Global text search in a book, or dictionary, as well as in-app purchases give you access to an unlimited library of bestselling authors.
Aldiko is a nice alternative, especially if you consider the prices because it offers some of the lowest prices on eBooks.
Despite being a relative newcomer to the market, the app boasts of a decent 4.2 rating in user reviews, so we thought this app might be a worthwhile asset on our list.
Mantanto supports epub2 and pdf, Adobe DRM, and offers an in-built OPDS browser; you can sync your library to Mantanto cloud storage; you can customize your reading experience with a large variety of themes and modes, including the night mode. Annotating and highlighting, searching and pinning is also available alongside the highly customizable display of your personal library.
Let us know about your preferences and tricks you use to customize and make your eBook reader a perfect replacement for good old paper books.