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PocketBook Pro 602 review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £145
inc VAT

The Pro 602 is a feature-packed and powerful device, but it's heavy, its user interface is unintuitive to use, its bookshop is limited and it's far too expensive

The PocketBook Pro 602 has support for multiple file formats, multiple languages (with dictionaries and text-to-speech to match) and built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. With a powerful Linux-based operating system, it includes a web browser, music player, image viewer and applications, including games and an RSS feed reader.

As with most non-Amazon devices, the Pro 602 uses Adobe’s technology to handle purchased eBooks, but it also has direct access to a dedicated website at, accessible from the Pro 602’s Library. The home page also has a dedicated box marked “eBook store”, but this opens a browser window to a German online book shop.

PocketBook Pro 602

When we first switched on the Pro 602 and saw a home page with a list of recent books, a calendar and a dedicated eBook shop, we thought it would be more intuitive to use. However, once you dig deeper into the interface you’re soon bogged down by poor controls and a badly-designed interface.

There’s no touch interface or stylus, just a four-way control with a back button, plus four other buttons for page navigation, Home and Contents. This limited set of controls might be OK for a simpler device, but trying to use them to control an on-screen mouse pointer in the web browser is incredibly frustrating.

The Library is split into three tabs: the Files tab simply lists the directory structure of the device, while the Library view shows thumbnails with each book’s cover, author and title, and you can sort books by genre or format and add favourites. If you’re browsing books and want to switch tabs, you have to move the selection box to the left-hand pane and then upwards to choose a tab.

Meanwhile, choosing the BookLand tab unexpectedly opens a browser window. Pressing the Home button while in the browser doesn’t take you back to the home page – you have to use the Back button for that. Bookland was disappointing, too; a search for “Banks” resulted in books about financial institutions and trashy romance novels, but none by award-winning novelist Iain M Banks.

PocketBook Pro 602 Back

You can connect to your PC via USB to transfer eBooks using Adobe’s Digital Editions software, but we found that the Pro 602 caused Digital Editions to freeze up each time, no matter how many eBooks were on the device.

At least the on-screen keyboard was interesting – it’s split into three sections, with the QWERTY layout split into three equal boxes. Pressing the middle button selects the middle letter in the middle box, but pressing left or right moves the selection to the middle letter of the corresponding box, from where it’s only one or two clicks to another letter. Once you’ve got the hang of it, it saves a lot of clicks.

Reading books is far less of a chore than managing them. Page turns are quick, and pressing the middle button brings up a quick menu, with options for searching taking notes, looking up words, rotating the page and activating the text-to-speech function, which is reasonably clear. Our only problem was with the zoom function, which cycles in one direction only.

It’s a shame that the Pro 602 has a wealth of features but fails to package them in an easy-to-use interface. If you need support for an odd file format or another language, we’d recommend the much cheaper BeBook Club S (review soon) over the Pro 602. Everyone else who’s keen to avoid the Kindle monopoly should go for the Kobo Wireless eReader


Price £145
Rating **


Viewable size 6.0in
Native resolution 600×800
Touchscreen y/n no
Capacity 2,048MB
Memory card support microSDHC
Size 132×11x182mmmm
Weight 255g
Battery and charge options Lithium Polymer, USB
eReader Battery life 14,000
Wireless networking support 802.11g
3G? no
Ports USB, 3.5mm headphone

Format Support

eReader TXT support yes
eReader HTML support yes
eReader RTF support yes
eReader PDF support yes
eReader ePub support yes
eReader MOBI support yes
eReader Amazon AZW support no
eReader Microsoft Word support yes
Audio MP3 playback Yes
Audio WMA playback No
Audio WMA-DRM playback No
Audio AAC playback No
Audio Protected AAC playback No
Audio OGG playback No
Audio WAV playback No
Audio Audible playback No
Image BMP support Yes
Image JPEG support Yes
Image TIFF support Yes

Buying Information

Price £145
Warranty two years collect and return

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