I honestly didn't think there was much more innovation coming from the ebook reader market as we have fantastic displays with months-long battery life and integrated backlighting. Kobo just showed me I wasn't thinking far enough out of the box with their new Kobo Aura H2O.
The Kobo Aura H2O is the first ebook reader that you can safely take to the beach, use by the pool, or even use in the tub. I am honestly not much of a bath guy, but when I do take the occasional bath you can find me relaxing with a good book on my Kindle Paperwhite.
Kobo conducted a customer survey and found that 60 percent of people said they would love to be able to read near the water without worry. I can tell you that I definitely worry with the Kindle in my hand and make sure a towel is near by and that I don't fall asleep.
The Kobo Auro H20 will be available starting 1 October for $179.99 with pre-orders starting on 1 September. This model is thinner and lighter than the award-winning Aura HD. In addition to an anti-glare display and front light technology, you get full IP67 waterproof (30 minutes in 1 meter of water) and dustproof performance.
Key specifications include a 6.8 inch touchscreen Carta E Ink display with 1430 x 1080 pixel resolution and 265 dpi, 1 GHz processor, 4GB of onboard storage, microSD card that supports up to 32GB, battery life of up to two months, and weight of 233 grams. It will be available in black.