As you may already know, Shelf Control is a column that revolves around e-reading on iOS. As such, it often focuses on iOS e-reading apps, as in this week’s edition.
For this week’s edition of Shelf Control, we’re going to take a look at Reader – eBooks from Sony on the occasion of its having just been updated to version 2.0.
Competing against the likes of Apple’s iBooks, Amazon’s Kindle, and Barnes & Noble’s Nook, Reader is the official iOS e-reading app of Sony’s e-bookstore of the same. After two years in development limbo, it was finally released in the App Store in November last year. Since then, it has received only three updates.
Reader’s first update brought nothing more than performance and stability improvements. Its second update also brought minor improvements plus bug fixes, but with the noteworthy addition of reading position syncing. It’s third and latest update, though, is decidedly more significant in that it introduces a totally new interface.
Of course, Reader’s brand new interface is designed to match the look and feel of iOS 7, which was officially released three months ago. It’s simpler, flatter, and, like it or not, whiter. But then again, you can always turn on night mode if you prefer to read in a darker setting.
In addition to night mode, Reader provides settings for text size, margin width, page animation, and brightness. If the configuration of these settings, as well as the overall appearance of the app’s reading screen, looks familiar, it’s because Reader’s reader, as it were, is powered by Bluefire Reader.
Reader’s reader also offers quick access to the table of contents, bookmarks, and book info. It’s also equipped with in-book search functionality.
Outside the reading screen is, of course, the library, which houses all of the books you’ve downloaded onto the app. These include “Claws,” an exclusive Detective Cooper short story by Stephen Booth, which is Reader’s new free preloaded title. Previously, the app’s free preloaded title was a short story by urban fantasy author Kim Harrison.
If you want to add more books to the library, you can go to the Purchased tab and sign in to your Reader Store account to download your purchased e-books. You can also go to the settings section to sign in with your Adobe ID to be able to put Adobe DRM-protected e-books into Reader. In addition, you can load DRM-free ePub and PDF files onto the app.
Reader- eBooks from Sony 2.0 is available now in the App Store for free. The app is compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad running iOS 6.0 or later.