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Hands on tips and tricks for using your e-Reader including finding, purchasing and downloading digital books.
You've taken the plunge and joined the new world of e-readers, or maybe you're just about to buy your first. This video explains how to get e-books onto your e-reader, and then goes through the most important functions of the reader so you're ready to go. When you buy an e-reader, it arrives blank, or it might have some brief instructions loaded on it. The first thing you need to do then is buy some books. There are two ways to do this, depending on the type of e-reader you've bought. Basically models need a home internet connection with a wireless router. Connect your e-reader to your home network by following the instructions that came with it. You might need to enter your router's password, if there is one.
Once connected, your e-reader has a link to the internet, and you're ready to start buying books. Remember, you'll need to be at home to buy books or download a new book to your e-reader. You can read wherever you take the e-reader, though if your e-reader is a 3G model, it can use the mobile phone network to download books, so you don't even need a home internet connection, and you don't need to be at home to download books. Depending on your model of e-reader, there'll be a screen that lets you log into an online store. We'll use Amazon's Kindle store as an example, but there are dedicated e-book stores from Google, Apple, and book retailers like Angus and Robinson, too. The quality of the e-book is the same at different online stores, but you might find some stores have books that others don't, and the prices might be slightly different. It still pays to shop around, even in the digital age.
Depending on which e-reader you buy, you may not be able to access all the stores. The Kindle, for instance, use only the Amazon Kindle store online. If you use an Android tablet as your e-reader, you can use Kindle, Google Book Store, and some other online stores. If you use an iPad as your e-reader, you can use Apple's iBook store, as well as Kindle and the Angus and Robinson e-book store. Finding and buying e-books is like using a library's computer catalogue. You can search by author's name, book title, or browse titles by genre or topic. Using a dedicated e-book store keeps it simple. You find a book you want, select it, confirm you want to buy it, and the book will start to download to your e-reader automatically.
You can buy books from independent sites, but you'll need to use a computer to buy the book, then load it onto your e-reader later. That can get a little bit tricky, so using one of the major stores is the easiest way to get started. Since it's an online store, you'll need to set up an account and use a credit card to make your purchases. Once a book is purchased from one of the major online stores, it's authorised with your account, and that's permanent. You can delete the book from your e-reader, lose the whole e-reader, or even destroy it, but you won't lose your copy of the book. Just buy a new e-reader, log onto the store using your account, and all your books will be there for you to retrieve.
You have a book on your e-reader. It's time to get reading. We're using a newer e-reader with a touch screen, but some older models have physical buttons. The basic functionality is the same, though. To read a book, tap it in your library. The book's table of contents opens up. Note that you can navigate straight to whatever chapter you want by simply tapping the chapter title. Read the pages normal, and when you're finished, tap the right hand edge of the screen to turn the page. On older e-readers, you may need to press the next page button. Finished reading for now? No need to set a bookmark or really do anything at all. Just switch the e-reader off. It remembers what page you're up to and will open the book back at that page. Even if you change books you can still keep your place.
Now for some really clever stuff. Most e-readers let you change the print size whenever you like using the type controls. On e-readers that use e-ink, you can adjust the contrast to suit lighting conditions. On a tablet, you can make the screen brighter or dimmer. Select words to see a definition. Yes, your e-reader even has a built-in dictionary. Now that's handy, isn't it? Don't forget search. You can search your entire collection, or just the book you're currently reading. Type in a few words, and see what comes up. You now know enough about e-readers to get started and enjoy your fave books in new digital form. Enjoy it.