e-reading,  First Pocket Reader,  read an e-book week

My First Pocket E-Reader

My first portable e-reader was this Toshiba Pocket PC. It’s a bit heavy and fat to fit in a pocket but it fit in my purse and held it’s battery power for longer than I could tolerate reading a back-lit screen. It’s great for reading in the dark.

I had Microsoft Reader, Adobe Reader, and Mobipocket Reader installed. I kept libraries on compact flash cards that fit in a slot at the top. It worked well because I could pop my card in the card reader on my desktop PC or on my laptop and pick up where I’d left off in any book as I moved between devices. It wasn’t my first PDA, but it was the first one that read e-books and after I had that feature I rarely used my PDA for anything else.

If I had one complaint about this one, it’s the backlighting. It’s hard on the eyes to read on a bright screen. That’s the key to newer e-readers like Kindle and Nook. When your eyes first settle into the beauty of an e-ink display, they say ahhh. It’s something I had to experience for myself before I truly understood why everyone raved about it. I still use the Toshiba but less often now that I have better reading devices.

My favorite thing about the PDA is that when people see me with it in my hand — concentrating, tapping the screen — they think I’m working. No one interrupts. When they see me with a book in my hand, they think it’s an invitation to interrupt.

Tell me about Your first e-reader.

Toshiba Pocket PC


  • Beth C.

    My first ereader was a gift a couple years ago but the gift giver didn't do enough research. It's not rechargeable, have to change a AAA battery whenever it dies. And for some reason whenever I did, the darn thing would reset itself and I'd have to reload everything from scratch, even the base programming. So I continue to read on the computer(desk or lap) til I can afford to buy myself a newer one. Maybe later this year. And I'll make sure it can read multiple formats, be rechargeable and have a warranty.

  • Allen

    My first attempts at e-reading were on older Palm devices, like the Zire 31 and Z22 — and it was awful. Small screen, back lit, terrible fonts. . . I spent far, far more time converting and transfering books to it than I ever spent reading on it.

    I gave up on e-reading until I got my first proper, dedicated e-reader: A Kindle. Now I find it difficult when I must read a physical book. Where's the dictionary? Page turning is cumbersome. Shadows in the inner margin are unnecessary . . .

  • Tami

    My first ereader was my iPhone! It was a bit hard on the eyes sometimes, but was great for reading at night while we were driving for long trips. (I have a super short attention span!)

    I now have a Kindle and I'm so happy that it syncs with my phone, and with the Kindle for Mac (when it finally comes out!)

    Love love love my books and being able to read all the time!


  • Karen in TN

    My first ereader was a palm pilot, as far as portable devices and discounting any computers/laptops. As for a dedicated reader, I tried out a few, but didn't buy until the Kindle came out (and I still use it daily).

    As for that original palm – no backlight (unlike some later models), so it worked outside and didn't kill your eyes. Those first books bought for it still sit in my library at ereader.com (where they ended up, along with an account I didn't know I had, as the original vendor was bought up and merged and bought up again). I recently downloaded them to my iphone, just for fun.

  • CynthiaW

    My first e-reader was my laptop – which also has the bonus of making people think that you're working, but shares the backlighting problem. I've also read quite a bit on the desktop – with the same benefits and problems and on my iPhone, which adds to the backlighting issue by interrupting the flow of my reading by having such a small screen. Of course, the iPhone has the added advantage of being with me all the time, so it's great for quick reads like newspaper and magazine articles.

    Now I have a nook and it's fantastic – I love reading on an e-ink screen. The only issue I have with it is that some books are only available for download from Amazon and the format isn't compatible with my nook – although that's really more the publisher's fault than the fault of my nook.

  • Dana

    My first ereader is a Sony Pocket Reader. It doesn't have a backlight, but I bought a case and booklight from M-Edge and I don't have a problem reading in the dark.

  • Cathy M

    First started reading ebooks on my PC, then picked up an Ebookwise Reader that I loved. It has a built in light, with a very easy to use bookshelf feature. Only drawback was that I had a hard time converting pdf files.

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