Plastic Logic have announced that their Que ProReader device will no longer be making it’s way out of the development stages, after previously having wowed the crowds at this year’s CES 2010 conference.
An unusually large e-reader at 10.7 inches in size, it had been developed with newspapers in mind, as well as business-orientated features such as PDF and Office document editing.
“We recognize the market has dramatically changed, and with the product delays we have experienced, it no longer make sense for us to move forward with our first generation electronic reading product. This was a hard decision, but is the best one for our company, our investors and our customers,” said Plastic Logic CEO Richard Archuleta.
He continued: “We plan to take the necessary time needed to re-enter the market as we refocus, redesign and retool for our next generation ProReader product. We continue to perfect our core plastic electronic technology and manufacturing processes that are central to our product’s unique value proposition.
“We remain the industry’s leader in the development of plastic electronics technology for commercial purposes and are continuing to actively advance this technology in our labs and in our manufacturing facility.”
It seems then that the runaway success of the iPad has claimed its first victim in the e-reader market. At a pencilled-in price of $799, the Que ProReader never really stood a chance against the iPad with its multiple possible apps and uses.
The Que ProReader did have a few neat ideas though which will be sorely missed. The strong focus on newspaper subscriptions may cause a few tears to be shed in publishing houses, while the Que ProReader’s many work-orientated features gave it the unique position of being the only enterprise-focussed e-reader set to hit the market.
Is this the first instance of what could be a slow, painful death for the e-reader? Amazon certainly seem to be hedging their bets, with news this morning that the Kindle developers may also be looking into developing multimedia devices tied directly to their online store.
Much like dedicated music devices such as MP3 players versus multi functioning mobile phones, e-readers have a difficult fight ahead of them if they are to keep afloat against the incoming wave of tablet devices. It makes you wonder whether or not Plastic Logic should just scrap the whole notion of developing a second-gen Que ProReader altogether.