Some people would rather spend their money on a truckload of books than drop a lot of cash on a Kindle or a Nook. In response, a number of companies have begun producing budget models that streamline the eReader dynamic. You don’t get a lot of frills, but you do get to read e-books with ease. Slick eReader is among the cheapest of these budget devices, but depending on what you’re looking for, it can also be among the most worthwhile.
The Slick is built much like other eReaders on the market: a thin tablet with much of its face devoted to an LCD screen. It bears a greater similarity to the Barnes and Noble Nook eReader than the Amazon Kindle, in that it doesn’t devote much space to controls. The reader’s 7 inch color screen is complemented by only a few basic controls to activate the device, adjust settings and turn pages.
Unlike the Nook, it doesn’t offer much in the way of design versatility. It comes in one color with very few options for customization, but keep it in mind that it is a budget model devoted more to operational needs than cosmetic ones.
[easyazon-image-link asin="B004IAIL9A" alt="Slick ER-700 e-Reader Black" src="http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41rBmgDyMoL.jpg" align="left" width="200" height="200"]The Slick supports e-books in both ePub and PDF formats, and carries a 2 GB internal memory with an SD card slot built in for optional additional memory. The color screen is backlit, making it very easy to read in low light situations, but not so easy to read in bright light, so depending on your normal reading environment it might not be the most fitting device for your lifestyle.
It’s surprisingly versatile in terms of the kinds of files it can support; it plays video and music and allows for photo viewing, but the versatility may be overshadowed for some users by its lack of customizable viewing. The Slick automatically switches between portrait and landscape (vertical and horizontal) orientation, but it doesn’t offer much in the way of margin control.
When you load a file to read, what you see is what you get; there’s no ability to adjust the number of words on each line of text. Its battery life is reasonable, approximately seven hours according to most users, but heavy duty reading will require heavy duty charging.
Some users might also find the Slick’s file management system slightly inconvenient. Because it offers no 3G or WiFi, users must connect the reader to a computer in order to add or remove files. It also has a somewhat limited compatibility. It can’t, for example, read Amazon Kindle files, but many users might tolerate this in favor of the low price and relatively hassle free reading experience.
Though it’s not the most high tech or most aesthetically pleasing eReader on the market, the Slick opens up the option of an eReader for many book lovers who may not have had access to one before. Its low price also means that it could prove an ideal tool for libraries hoping to provide more reading options to customers, schools hoping to save money on textbooks by loading them all onto a single reader for students to borrow, corporations in need of a faster way to distribute documents without using reams of paper, and even everyday readers looking for a low cost way to make their books more portable.
Some reviewers have decried it as simply a cheap knock off, and some users will be unhappy with its limitations, but for people wishing to simply read a book on a digital device, the Slick offers a low cost alternative to the giants of the eReader world.