Sony to introduce e-book reader and online store

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Sony will launch its Portable Reader System PRS-50 e-book reader in the US during October, alongside an online digital book store with some 10,000 DRM-protected titles for purchase and use on the machine.

Whilst specs are sketchy at present, it will use technology from E-Ink that allows an individual page to be displayed without consuming any battery power. Power is only required to display new pages, and a single charge of the internal battery should provide up to 7500 page turns.

It will display Sony’s own DRM-infested books, but not books with any other protection system. It will, however, show documents and books that aren’t protected, including PDFs, RTF and image files.

Sony has special software, that’s will initially only be available on a Windows XP PC, that must be used to upload books to the gadget. Oh goodie. And yes, that means that Mac owners get left out in the cold.

Mind you, we could all be left out in the cold in Europe, as Sony don’t have plans to release it here until at least the second quarter of 2007. It will retail in the US for around $350.

Are you interested in a dedicated e-book reader or would you invest in something like a tablet PC which can do a whole host of other things?

Andy Merrett

One thought on “Sony to introduce e-book reader and online store

  • DRM is fine as long as I can read what I want and not be limited by someone elses library – interoperability is essential. If they’re going to charge USD350 for a reader then the books had better be less than $10. I’d love to be able to read the morning newspaper on one of these and if it’s as easy on the eyes as conventional newspapers then this may be a winner. Who’s got space for all those real books in an ever shrinking world.

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