In the past, when there were only a few devices that could read ebooks, they were called Ebook Readers. This was fine and life was uncomplicated. Nowadays, however, software applications like Acrobat Reader and devices like the Palm Doc are often both referred to as Readers.
For our purposes and to clarify this ambiguity, devices like the Palm are called Ebook devices and are discussed separately in the relevant section of this site. Now, let's take a look at some of the available Ebook Readers.
Adobe Reader - This is part of the Acrobat family of products and can be freely downloaded from the Adobe Website.
The format used is known as Portable Document Format (PDF) and was developed by Adobe Systems Incorporated. It is the de facto standard for reading ebooks.
Acrobat Standard - Software used to create Adobe PDF files
Acrobat Professional - As above but with more advanced options.
Acrobat Reader for Pocket PC - Allows you to view PDF files on Pocket PC devices.
Adobe Reader for Palm OS - Allows you to view PDF files on hand held devices that use the Palm OS.
Acrobat Reader for Symbian OS - Allows you to view PDF files on the Nokia Communicator 9210 or 9290.
If you want a low cost solution for creating PDFs, then check out pdfsecrets.
Embiid CSpotRun - This is an Ebook Reader for Palm OS devices. It allows documents to be read in the Pilot DOC format. To read encrypted Embiid books, you will also need the DRM module.
FlipViewer - This is a free viewer that allows you to create, upload and share flipbooks on the Internet. More information and a free download is available on the FlipBooks Page . Flipviewer is also available for digital cameras.
Microsoft Reader for Desktop and Laptop PC - An Ebook Reader that allows you to read Microsoft Reader eBooks.
Microsoft Reader for Tablet PC - This is designed specifically for computers running Microsoft Windows XP Tablet PC Edition. It is not designed for any other operating system or device.
Microsoft Reader for Pocket PC - This comes pre-installed on most Pocket PC 2002 and Pocket PC 2003 devices. If you already have an older version of Microsoft Reader installed, you'll need to uninstall Microsoft Reader then install the new version.
Microsoft Text to Speech Package - This enables Microsoft Reader to take advantage of existing speech technologies. It can be used with the Microsoft Reader for Tablet PC and Microsoft Reader for Windows-based PCs and laptops.
Note that the Microsoft Reader software must be installed on your computer in order to read Microsoft ebooks.
If you enjoy eBooks but much prefer reading from a printed book, take a look at the Amazon Kindle
Mobipocket Reader - This Ebook Reader supports .prc cross-platform ebook file format and standard DOC type of .pdb files. With the Web Companion quick Publish function PalmOS platforms can be converted to the Mobi .prc file format. With the Mobipocket Office Companion, Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint and other Office documents can be converted to the Mobi .prc format. The Mobipocket Reader can also be used with the Tungsten T3 if the two patch files AppSlipRotate.prc and StatusBarLib.prc are installed.
Nokia 9210/9290 Communicator eBook Reader - This has a viewer, an organiser and an ebook maker. It can download and read ebooks from web based stores and provides a personal library to store them. It is also compatible with the Palm DOC (Aportis).
Palm eBook Reader - This is used for reading ebooks in the Peanut Markup Language (PML) format and is compatible with devices running the Palm OS.
TK3 Reader - This is a Reader for Windows and Macintosh computers that allows you to read multimedia documents created with TK3 Author. It also allows you to annotate and personalize your TK3 books.
Weasel Reader - A free Reader for Palm Pilot organizers. Weasel uses zTXT files as its primary format unlike other document viewers for the Palm.The free software is released under the GNU General Public License v2 and is available for download at the Weasel Reader website