Sony Reader Wi-Fi Touch (PRS-T1) eBook reader

Sony’s new eBook reader is a definite Kindle competitor

  • Review
  • Specs
  • Images
  • User Reviews
  • Buy Now
Sony Reader Wi-Fi Touch (PRS-T1)
  • Sony Reader Wi-Fi Touch (PRS-T1)
  • Sony Reader Wi-Fi Touch (PRS-T1)
  • Sony Reader Wi-Fi Touch (PRS-T1)
  • Expert Rating

    3.75 / 5

Pros

  • High quality screen
  • Long battery life

Cons

  • Complicated interface
  • No built-in Google Books store

Bottom Line

Sony's touch-sensitive, Wi-Fi enabled eBook reader is a solid product, although you'll need to want the extra features afforded by the touchscreen for it to be worth buying over the cheaper and more intuitive Amazon Kindle.

Would you buy this?

The Amazon Kindle revolutionised the electronic book-reading market, and spawned a wide range of upstart competitors. Alongside the Nook and the Kobo, Sony’s Reader is one of the most distinguished Kindle alternatives, and the Wi-Fi Touch is the latest model.

Sony Reader Wi-Fi Touch: Design

The Sony Reader Wi-Fi Touch (PRS-T1, to use its Sony-mandated official model number) has a thin bezel around its 6in e-Ink Pearl touchscreen display, finished in either black, white, or a pinkish red. All three colours have a brushed metal lower bezel in a slightly different secondary colour, with the Sony logo and notations for the Reader Wi-Fi Touch’s five front buttons printed on. The bezel is glossy, which might be distracting if you’re reading in sunlight or in an office.

The Reader Wi-Fi Touch’s five front buttons handle page turns and navigation through the Home, Return and contextual Menu keys. A recessed power button on the bottom of the Reader locks and unlocks it, sitting next to a headphone jack and microUSB port. There’s a microSD card slot hidden on the e-reader’s back panel.

Unlike the Kindle there are no shoulder buttons for changing pages, so if you’re holding the Sony e-reader in one hand you’ll have to reach with your thumb for the lower bezel buttons. Alternatively, you could use the touchscreen — one of the features is that a left or right swipe turns the page, as we quickly learned when trying to wipe some dust off the screen.

The touchscreen responds well to input, and while we wouldn’t use it for taking long notes or for writing a novel, it’s perfectly functional for searching Sony’s Reader Store or for entering a Wi-Fi network password. Being an infrared touchscreen, you don’t actually have to touch the Reader Wi-Fi Touch’s display at all — as long as your fingertip is within about a millimetre of the screen an input is registered; we appreciated not having to tap the touchscreen hard to get it to work. We did occasionally accidentally brush it while holding the Reader, accidentally turning a page, but this is something prospective users will quickly learn to avoid.

Sony Reader Wi-Fi Touch: Ease of use and interface

The Sony Reader Wi-Fi Touch’s menu is relatively easy to navigate, but its layout is often disjointed with an eclectic mix of pictures, text and icons. It lacks the interface fluidity that makes products like the iPad so innately usable. Strangely, only a single book is ever listed in the ‘Continue Reading’ section, so if you’re the kind of person who flicks between several at once you’ll probably prefer the Amazon Kindle’s default list of several recently read books. We also preferred the text-only main menu layout of the Kindle, although when both e-readers are in the middle of a good book (as they should be 99 per cent of the time) there is little difference. Skipping pages is easier on the Reader, with the touchscreen affording the ability to quickly drag the progress bar to move forward or back quickly.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?