Reviewed in Canada on December 11, 2019
I've had every version of the Oasis, and several previous Kindles, along with two Kobos. I dabbled with the Kobo Forma because I needed warm light -- and the last version of Oasis (before current one), sadly didn't have it. It's that important to a good reading experience. Fortunately, I came back because the Forma has uneven lighting, and the eco system just is weak. My library is hundreds of Kindle books, so I'm "stuck." It's a good stuck, as I love the new Oasis 7" with warm light. It's handy to carry, really lovely to hold with the notch and the taper (you either love it or hate it. I love it.) If I'm picky, I'd say I prefer the 7.8" screen size of Forma, but with uneven lighting (also some noticeable flicker), it comes back to the 7" Oasis. In real life, once you sit down with a book, 7" is just as good, and smaller in the hand (which is great!) It's snappier too, although only a little bit, as compared to both Forma and my previous Oasis. Mainly, I love the even lighting, the auto dimming (although it's not always right on) and the must have for me -- warm lighting. I could never read with cold light for a long period of time, too fatiguing. What's the big dissapointment? Battery, if you leave Bluetooth or LTE on. Turn it off, it's days long (I read at least 3 hours a night). Turn it on, it's down in a day or two. For a real book-reader, you simply don't need it on, so turn it off, you'll be happier.
You'll also be happier if you remember it's not a tablet. I have my older gen ipad for that, don't want this to be a tablet. Tablets should be tablets, readers should be readers. Tablets don't last long on batteries, and they are great with PDF documents, and so on — but book e-readers let you shut down the email, social media and other distractions and sink into a good book. I love that 32GB has enough room for thousands of books, audio books and some PDFs. It's all I need.
Wish list? Next gen, make it 8", longer battery life, even snappier on page turns if possible (each gen of e-ink seems snappier). Keep those buttons, they're lovely, but you could drop the "click." I don't like the sponge-like buttons on Forma, but I like their silence when reading. Nits aside, it's a spectacular device, great to haul with you anywhere, small enough for your bag, hand, to carry all day, waterproof. Don't need speakers, bluetooth or colour. Is it worth it? Yes, if you're a big reader — say 1.5 hours a day or longer, where eye fatigue and distractions are factors. No, if you're a light bathroom reader (i.e. short sessions), stick with the tablet, or the cheapest kindle.