The "1-Minute" Review
- No backlight
- Limited capabilities
The reMarkable 2 is an e-Ink slate with the goal of replacing paper without losing any of the aesthetic that comes with writing. Besides being a more green option for this day and age, what else does the reMarkable 2 have to offer?
Reviewers all noted how surprisingly thin the reMarkable 2 is. However, it’s heavier than the first-generation reMarkable -- thanks to its more premium aluminum chassis over the previous plastic one. Still, it’s nearly bezel-less, which allows for more surface area to write and draw on and feels more like a folded magazine in terms of weight than your typical tablet or e-reader.
The 10.3-inch Canvas display is simple yet refined. It’s an e-ink display that does best in black and white. Pictures don’t load very well and are pixelated. But that’s to be expected with the technology.
However, if you’ve ever used virtually any other e-reader, you’re likely to be surprised by the lack of built-in lighting with the reMarkable 2. Most reviewers felt that trading a thin design for an integrated light was a poor decision. So be sure to have lamps, book lights, or plenty of natural lighting around if you plan to read, sketch, or take notes.
There is some latency involved in using the reMarkable 2, but reviewers stated that it wasn’t too much of an issue in the long run. Once you’ve spent a few minutes writing and tapping around the interface, it begins to feel quite natural.
It’s an e-reader, not a tablet, and it performs as such. But it never left reviewers wanting.
Software & Storage
ReMarkable 2 does not have the typical operating system you’re accustomed to when it comes to tablets. Instead, it runs on Linux-based Codex OS. It comes with 8GB of storage and doesn’t offer any further expansion, but when you consider that everything will be text and black and white, that’s likely plenty of room.
There’s a lot to look forward to as the software matures too. Already, reMarkable has promised a Google Chrome extension to send texts to your reMarkable for later reading much like Pocket or Evernote.
The reMarkable 2 does not have any cameras.
Its battery may be small when you compare it with today's tablets and smartphones, but it does a good job holding onto a charge. So good that some reviewers cited two weeks’ worth of battery time. It also charges by USB-C.
The reMarkable 2 does not support audio.
The reMarkable 2 supports a range of stylus options and an official case.
The tablet comes with the Marker Stylus in the box, which is the baseline edition. But there is also the Marker Stylus Plus, which has an eraser function on the top.
The folio case is a magnetic dust jacket of sorts and doesn’t have a ton of functionality beyond that point. But it is stylish enough and reviewers felt it was well made.
Specs at a Glance
- Thin aluminum design
- 10.3-inch E-Ink display
- ARM A9 Dual-core 1.2 GHz processor
- 1GB of RAM
- Linux-based Codex OS
- 8GB of storage
- No camera
- 3,000mAh battery
- No audio
- reMarkable Marker Stylus
The Bottom Line
The reMarkable 2 is an interesting device. It does one thing really well -- feeling like a real sheet of paper turned digital. But it costs more than a few of the ever-popular iPad models even if you add in the cost of the excellent Apple Pencil.
In a world of multitasking and all-in-one devices, the price asked for the reMarkable 2 left some reviewers conflicted. That being said, it’s certainly a unique experience and if you’re looking to eliminate distractions, the reMarkable 2 has its benefits over other more-capable options.
WIRED states, “If you're looking for the best note-taking experience you've had since pen and paper, look no further. However, if you're like me, and the thought of spending hundreds of dollars on an imperfect gadget makes your head spin, maybe it's best to wait for the next version. Maybe that one will be able to do more.”
The Verge says, “But the high price tag and limited features still don’t make a case for why a digital version of paper should exist in a world where tablets have already long since surpassed their analogue counterparts. The reMarkable 2 is a convincing digital evolution of paper. But why be paper when you could be a whole computer instead?”
Prices (Where to Buy)
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