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  • snarfbot - Friday, November 20, 2009 - link

    popular science reported how these new devices were on the verge of replacing paper.

    now 15 years later, theyre more expensive and bulkier.

    more screen, less nonscreen please.

    and when the actual ebooks cost 10 bucks anyway, why not just get the paperback?

    its more comfortable to hold and read anyway.
    Reply
  • Googer - Tuesday, November 10, 2009 - link

    Amazon should add MP3, OGG, FLAC support, and a good DAC. I'd bet they would sell 2x as many that way. It would also pave the way for a spoken audio track incorporated in to Kindle Copies for the blind, dyslexic, and disabled. Reply
  • Googer - Tuesday, November 10, 2009 - link

    Amazon should add MP3, OGG, FLAC support, and a good DAC. I'd bet they would sell 2x as many that way. It would also pave the way for a spoken audio track incorporated in to Kindle Copies for the blind, dyslexic, and disabled. Reply
  • LtPage1 - Tuesday, November 10, 2009 - link

    I absolutely take issue with the idea that the Kindle won't be as successful as the iPod because reading is somehow less popular than listening to music. As deeply depressing as that idea is to contemplate, the real issue is that no one who likes to read has any interest whatsoever in an ebook reader. I don't care how good it is, I'm not holding a book in my hands. It's like trying to convince someone who really enjoys driving a proper manual transmission that modern automatic gearboxes are better: "But it's faster! It's more fuel efficient! You can drink coffee and drive at the same time!" We don't care; it's not the same, and it never will be. Reply
  • jblack22 - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link

    I bought my first e-book reader about 18 months ago, it was the Sony PSR505. Fantastic product and I certainly have used it over the last year and half. Recently however I have noticed a substantial degradation in the screen. It looks as though there is a film of dirt on the actual screen. I'm noticing this for the first time after not using it for about 3 months. The screen itself is losing it's quality. Unlike LCDs there is no such thing as dead pixels but instead it looks as though whatever material is used to to display the image is coming through the screen. It certainly makes text harder to read. I wonder if anyone else with a kindle or any other ebook reading device is facing the same situation. My preliminary though however is that these items have certainly not been made to last, and their economic feasibility may be degraded thanks to the DRM imposed on their libraries. Reply
  • Penti - Friday, November 06, 2009 - link

    Actually the book market is way larger then the music industry ever has been. It's still a market which grows too. So there definitively gonna be a revolution with ebook readers, sadly they aren't even sold in Sweden, you'd have have to order a Kindle 2 Int from US or a Sony reader from like UK. The publishing companies needs to get on with it, they haven't in large parts of the world. Ebooks is still something exotic which don't have any significant turnover here. The question is just how it will look. When the revolution hits. Amazon for example will never have a operation up here in the Nordic. Our own giants aren't jumping on the ship yet, ebooks for just reading on the PC is pretty useless. But I'm sure this billion dollar industry will join the revolution soon. You might not read books when your jogging, but when your commuting or traveling it's pretty standard plus it can be used for news too. It's more money in it. Would be pretty easy to come and dominate the market here. Mind you swedes haven't discovered online music sales yet, but thats maybe because they are so used to pirate it. iTunes isn't the largest music retailer here. There's no equivalent to Amazon either. However the market is full of e-tailers. Any way we need both a good selling platform for ebooks and retailers and publishingcompanies pushing ebook-readers. You can't really have one without the other, so sales suck. But then again we're in the country where Spotify probably has a larger turnover then iTunes Music Store sales. Reply
  • JonnyDough - Thursday, November 05, 2009 - link

    A static TOUCH SCREEN would rock! My friend really loves crossword puzzles. Combine that with reading, tic tac toe, etc...and you'll never be bored again. :) Reply
  • Repr - Thursday, November 05, 2009 - link

    what annoys me the most is that ebooks are nearly as expensive as real books. you could say you pay for writers effort, but it still feels like a rip-off

    what im mostly interested in though, and something i either skipped reading or wasnt mentioned, can you just load a PDF file on it? for study i have to read a lot of research articles, mostly found/bought in pdf format on the internet. it would be great if i could carry those around
    Reply
  • Reznick - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link

    Love the Kindle, a gift from Xmas 2008. Found myself reading more frequently, trying new books more than I would have before. More authors are providing Kindle books free, giving you the chance to try them out first before buying more of their books. Worked for me, discovered some great authors this way.

    So then I get the iPhone over the summer. Kindle on the iPhone app is free. And, despite the smaller format, I'm now using the iPhone almost exclusively for reading. More portable, with a backlit screen. Can read anywhere anytime, while the Kindle is too large for the pocket. It is better suited for travel and long term reading sessions, as compared with the iPhone format. My wife, who gave me the Kindle, is now using it for her reading. I'm reading so many more books now than even with the Kindle. So, I love the Kindle, but I love the iPhone even more.

    Of course, the Kindle or iPhone are really the best for fiction books, no pics, always reading straight through. Forget about going back to a particular section or finding a certain word. Sucks for reference books (Textbooks on a Kindle? They have to be kidding). But for catching up on Dan Brown, or the latest Sookie Stackhouse novel, the format is perfect for me.
    Reply
  • Zingam - Thursday, November 05, 2009 - link

    The screen is too small. The device is too expensive. It's not good for reading ebooks in PDF format.

    The best ereader would have a screen big enough to display properly all these thousands of books in PDF format \and not only an incompatible, proprietary format\. Will last at least 2-3 days without recharging, will be rigid and will be affordable even for poor people. And then we actually might start saving the planet and the trees.

    Reply
  • edzieba - Wednesday, November 04, 2009 - link

    I'll be waiting until the resolution is bumped up. 800x600? Pfff, useless. The Kindle DX is a step in the right direction, but far too expensive. Reply
  • medi01 - Thursday, November 05, 2009 - link

    Sense make you not. 800x600 is more than enough for a 6" device. Reply
  • MonicaS - Wednesday, November 04, 2009 - link

    I still think that the Kindle is pretty useless. It does what its supposed to do, but seems very limited for the price. I think if it cost only $50, then it would make sense, but for the price you can get devices that are for more capable. Its sort of like when the iPhone first came out and cost $600. There was no way it was worth that much, and clearly Apple didn't think so either as they dropped the price after a short while.

    Monica S
    Los Angeles Computer Repair
    http://www.sebecomputercare.com">http://www.sebecomputercare.com
    Reply
  • rrinker - Wednesday, November 04, 2009 - link

    Sure there's the paper-white display. But I've been reading e-books for YEARS now, going back to when a Palm III was a hot commodity. I stuck with the Palm platform through several versions, including two Palm-OS smartphones because I HATE to carry around multiple devices. I was tempted by the iPhone but needed to know one thing - was there an ebook reader app that could use all my existing Palm format files (I have hundreds if not thousands of free LEGAL ebooks). I found the Bookshelf app could do that, so I switched from my Treo 680 to an iPhone. Bookshelf allows the iPhone to do all that the Kindle does, download directly to the phone, or download to my PC and then wirelessly to the phone. If I felt like opening up the proper port on my firewall, I could remotely access the books on my computer at home.
    The screen size is a complete non-issue for me. I have far from perfect eyes, yet reading on the iPhone or any of my previous PDA devices has never caused eyestrain. Since the screen is illuminated, I can read in otherwise total darkness, no reading lights to disturb others.
    Glad to see the rest of the world is catching up to where I was over 10 years ago.
    Reply
  • Wolfpup - Wednesday, November 04, 2009 - link

    I like the hardware pretty well. The form factor is pretty good, buttons pretty good, and in fact in some ways it's easier to use than a book (since you can actually use it one handed pretty easily, compared to a book where turning pages is harder). It's not flawless, and the resolution and contrast are TERRIBLE compared to a paperback, though still useable.

    But...Amazon'd DRM situation is hideous. Even worse than Apple's. On top of that, no replaceable battery?

    I hope at some point we get an eBook store with no activation, the way most music has switched to that. I'll be a lot more excited about the whole category if that happens.
    Reply
  • medi01 - Thursday, November 05, 2009 - link

    Contrast is bad indeed, but resolution is more than enough. Reply
  • cjs150 - Wednesday, November 04, 2009 - link

    All this is irrelevant until ebooks do the following:

    1. No DRM.
    2. Massive selection of books which I can store on pc and download when I want
    3. Screen refresh has to be instant
    4. Very light but durable
    5. If, as they allow, I can download my newspaper then I must also be able to do the crossword, sudoko and killer sudoko on it as well

    Now we are close to getting there but Kindle fails on no 1 and 5 most of the others fail on all 5!

    Let me know when we have something that passes all 5 and is not white
    Reply
  • bobvodka - Wednesday, November 04, 2009 - link

    My biggest issue with the Kindle etc is the screen size. I have ALOT of technical books based around programming and the like, however these books are often larger than the form factor the Kindle comes in which would require the text to be reflowed which, when combined with annotations etc doesn't work that well at the best of times.

    Now, the KindleDX is close to solving this problem as it has a nice large screen... now, if only you could get it outside the US.. *sigh*
    Reply
  • dgz - Wednesday, November 04, 2009 - link

    It's all cool but what happened to the promised Hydra review? MSI's Bing Bang motherboard? Reply
  • medi01 - Wednesday, November 04, 2009 - link

    As there are very solid products from other companies, like Sony or IREX. Reply
  • djc208 - Wednesday, November 04, 2009 - link

    I think these readers are just step one. Like MP3 players, they were fancy stand-alone devices. Now just about everything has a built in MP3 player.

    The e-book reader is a niche product right now because of it's price and manufacturer created limitations. Let the price move down and a more universal type format for easier storage and interaction and I think these will quickly move into the commercial space in a huge way, and then eventually to the general public.

    I could see huge savings at my job for a device like these. All the paperwork that we generate and process, moved onto one of these devices, used at the worksite and returned and uploaded back into the network when complete. No torn pages, garbled signatures, or printing errors. Not to mention the savings in paper, toners, copiers, faxing, etc.
    Reply
  • medi01 - Wednesday, November 04, 2009 - link

    You are missing the point here: not everything can be integrated into something. Important features of ebooks as of now are:

    a) bigger than on usual pocket devices, e-ink (= slow) screen
    b) battery lasts for weeks

    AFAIK amazon alone has sold more than 4 millions of kindles, and number of ebook reader is still growing. That's quite a big number for a niche product.
    Reply
  • Egowhip69 - Saturday, November 07, 2009 - link

    I think you miss a very big and important point...

    "Let the price move down and a more universal type format for easier storage and interaction..."

    IF the producers of these systems were really thinking long term, they'd sit down and specify ONE open format that works with ALL e-readers...

    While, yes, the Amazon has sold 4+ mil devices... they are still engaged (albeit on a MUCH smaller scale compared to other markets) in a format war... Reality says, pick an open standard with your opponents, and then you only have one theater of war (and as a result can focus your resources!)... the hardware...

    "But the profits!!!" I hear the cry already... think... there is a HUGE untapped market because of this format BS.

    Example:

    I love reading, and love the idea of a digital format for my books... but I'm not going to shell out the cash for one reader just to find my favorite author / books / series is only avail on a format supported on another piece of hardware... That's what kept me from being an initial adopter of the writable DVD format, the HD format (Blu-Ray vs HD-DVD), any sort of music with DRM format (past mp3... but no DRM there) and will continue into the future...

    Simply, paper is universal... once these retarded companies get past their ego, realize that cooperation on a format will MAKE them money, and pick a format that can be universal... they'll see their profits shoot through the roof! Especially Amazon, as they are THE top recognized brand of e-reader at the moment. Meaning, people who are just looking to try it out, will buy their product first simply cause they have heard of it!

    But first, there needs to be an accepted standard... otherwise, like me, many will wait till their is one... or until there are devices that do ALL the standards...

    Reply
  • mrubermonkey - Tuesday, November 03, 2009 - link

    So now you are referring to yourself in the third person. Reply
  • T2k - Tuesday, November 03, 2009 - link

    Seriously: can you tell us HOW ON EARTH did you manage to COMPLETELY IGNORE B&N's NOOK, the obvious Kindle 2 beater, which includes EVEYRTHING this NEVER-HEARD Marvell design promises including, multiplatform Qualcomm Gobi cell module (GSM/CDMA/WCDMA), WiFi, touch interface, second color screen etc...?

    This is the most pathetic effort to (not-so) implicitly support or rather pump-up Amazon in the face of the first serious contender, the Nook.
    Reply
  • StormyParis - Tuesday, November 03, 2009 - link

    I'll try to find some kind of MID phone that can double (triple ? quadruple ?) as an e-book reader. The upcoming 5" android phones look like good candidates.

    I just don't feel like carrying a phone, an ebook reader, a MID, an MP3 player... and I'm willing to sacrifice quite a bit to bring down the plugcount.
    Reply
  • T2k - Tuesday, November 03, 2009 - link

    But but but...

    ...the Nook IS Android.

    OTOH I don't really think there's any alternative to eInk displays - any active display is way to stressing for long reading sessions, at least according to my year-long experience w/ my first-gen Kindle.


    If your'e fine with active LCDs then you might want to look into Sony Ericsson's upcoming X10: it's 1GHz Snapdragon, 4" 854x400 and Android (1.6 now, 2.0 when ships) w/ SE's crazy good looking new UI (see today's launch videos.)
    Current 5" tablets are still too big and heavy IMHO.
    Reply
  • Vinas - Tuesday, November 03, 2009 - link

    I think the Sony Reader is awesome and look much better than the kindle. A comparison of all ereaders would be a great review! Reply
  • SilthDraeth - Tuesday, November 03, 2009 - link

    we sell a sony ereader at Staples where I work, and the thing is trash. The screen refreshes really slowly, and is painful to look at. Reply
  • klau1 - Thursday, November 05, 2009 - link

    it's the first time I heard someone say an e-ink screen is painful to look at.
    Unless by painful you mean it doesn't look as animated and colorful as LCD screens.
    For reading LCD / CRT screens are known to cause more eye strain and decrease reading speed compared to paper and presumably paper like e-ink screens.
    Reply
  • strikeback03 - Wednesday, November 04, 2009 - link

    Thats one thing I was wondering about the kindle - one of the grad students I work with has an ebook reader (don't know the brand) and it takes around 10 seconds to flip a page - waaayyy too slow. Is the Kindle a lot faster than that? Reply
  • piasabird - Tuesday, November 03, 2009 - link

    I like the concept of Kindle or a reader program. However, this seems like the kind of thing that would be ideal for a Laptop or a Nettop device or even just a more portable Flash (Thumb) Drive. I work at a Community College and would love to see some legislations requiring all textbooks be available in a format that is accessable by a reader program that anyone can download. Students have a hell of a time buying paper textbooks and then trying to lug around 50-60 lbs of them with their associated notebooks and folders and homework to 4 or 5 classes.

    Why I would prefer a small laptop or nettop for something like this is that you could also be doing your homework or taking notes.
    Reply
  • Zoomer - Friday, November 06, 2009 - link

    For a lot of people, the solution to that is to not buy the text. Reply
  • DrApop - Tuesday, November 03, 2009 - link

    Kindle is also coming out with a PC version. They already have an iphone version.

    Someone complained about having the large keyboard area. I like that area...that I what I tend to hold the device. You don't hold it on the side edges as that is where the buttons are for turning the page...you hold it at the bottom.

    I've owned my Kindle 1 for almost 2 years and really enjoy it. I find it more efficient than a book.

    And to the individual who said they don't want/need wireless, wifi, connectivity, a keyboard, etc. I said the same about the dvr/tivo until I tried it. Very convenient reading anywhere you like and purchasing reviewing books any location you are at.

    The protability is great too. I don't want to have to read off a laptop while leaning back on the coach or while in bed.

    And they are coming down in price. You pay extra for the convenience. Just like the ipod, zune, mp3 player, pda, smartphone, etc....you are gonna pay extra.
    Reply
  • Spivonious - Tuesday, November 03, 2009 - link

    The Kindle looks very neat, and I have no doubt that I would use it for reading books and periodicals, but the cost is very prohibitive. It would have to be under $100 before I'd even seriously consider getting one.

    What would make it more attractive to me is some sort of book subscription similar to Microsoft's Zune Pass. I'd definitely pay $5-$10 a month for unlimited books.
    Reply
  • epobirs - Tuesday, November 03, 2009 - link

    Agreed. I have far more need for a continuous source of new reading material than I do new music. A library subscription service that gives authors royalties is needed to keep writing a viable career for those with the talent.

    Actually, I wouldn't mind if my local community library system worked on a rental basis if there were tracking to reward the specific writers whose works are most popular. The difference with e-books is that there is no competition for a limited number of physical copies.
    Reply
  • medi01 - Wednesday, November 04, 2009 - link

    Like Tolkeen, right. He'll sure benefit from you buying his books, so that he could continue his career and write new ones. Oh, wait, he's dead? Well, maybe his kids or whoever receives the money will be motivated to write more books...[/sarcasm] Reply
  • druine - Friday, November 06, 2009 - link

    I know your being sarcastic, but its rather ironic you use this example. His son DID use his notes to write another Middle Earth book, it just wasn't received with open arms. Got a lot of mixed reviews because it was from his own interpretation of his father's notes. Reply
  • gwolfman - Tuesday, November 03, 2009 - link

    I agree. I was looking to get one for my wife, but the initial buy-in is too great.

    When are they going to come out with one that has the Timex Indiglo backlighting (for example)? That would be awesome for reading at night if you could adjust the brightness to suit your needs.
    Reply
  • klau1 - Tuesday, November 03, 2009 - link

    Sony already has one, it's called the Sony PRS700 Reply
  • medi01 - Thursday, November 05, 2009 - link

    Which is EOLed now. Replaced by:
    5" PRS 505 (no expansion slot) MSP 200$
    6" PRS 600 MSP 300$
    8" PRS 900 don't remember the price, about 500$ afaik
    Reply
  • klau1 - Thursday, November 05, 2009 - link

    the PRS 505 has no expansion slot? Unless there's a 'lite' version I'm not aware of, my PRS 505 has both SDHC and Sony Memory Card expansion slots. Reply
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    first Reply
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  • Ananke - Tuesday, November 03, 2009 - link

    Why it is so painfully white? Wouldn't it be better having black or some dark colored frame? And I don't like the pad beneath the display, makes it bulky, but that's me. I would ideally prefer novel book size display (like 8*6 inches) touch screen, plain frame around (like quarter inch), maybe just few quick buttons. Keep it cheap, no fancy color display or movie capabilities for the basic models. MUST have SD slot and PC connectivity, Wi-Fi also. It should give its customers control over their book library, i.e. NOT DRM restriction software embeded and similar crap.

    I don't think Amazon, Sony, Barns & Noble, etc will ever provide device to my needs. Just anybody even remotely related to book producers will not allow full control over digital content. So, I am waiting to see what the computer makers like Asus, Acer, MSI will come up with later. They DEFINITELY will flood the e-book market with good devices, it is just a matter of several more months waiting.
    Reply
  • tajmahal - Tuesday, November 03, 2009 - link

    I've also been waiting for a more affordable E-book reader. I don't want anything fancy, no phone, no Wi-Fi, no alarms or calendars, i don't want it to dance around my table and sing songs. I just want a simple E-book reader with a SD slot and PC connectivity. After Kindles fiasco with Orwells books i wouldn't buy from Amazon for any reason. Simple and cheap is what i'm looking for. Reply
  • lyeoh - Wednesday, November 04, 2009 - link

    Do you really own your Kindle when you buy it?

    If customers really owned their Kindles then Amazon deleting 1984 from those Kindles without permission was a serious breach of Computer Misuse Laws in many countries. If you don't own it, then why the high price?

    When you buy a book, if it turns out to be an illegal copy, Amazon is not supposed to break into your house to remove it. Amazon could report the problem to the police and the police can do the breaking and entering if they want to (and normally after permission from the Courts).

    Corporations should not be allowed to bypass a Government's monopoly on force and violence.
    Reply
  • klau1 - Tuesday, November 03, 2009 - link

    Sony is one of the few with a DRM free, distributor unlimited device.
    Their PRS505 has SD and Memory stick slot.
    Reads PDF, Txt, DOC, etc for non-DRM media. Even plays mp3 for music or audio books.
    The rom is modifiable and runs Linux
    Reply
  • tajmahal - Tuesday, November 03, 2009 - link

    The PRS 505 is also $260 and i don't need music or audio books, i just want a reader, nothing more. Reply
  • buckao - Monday, November 09, 2009 - link

    $260? I purchased my PRS505 about 6 months ago for $180 at at a major retail bookstore. The audio features are nothing special; the main focus is on reading. There's no bluetooth or wifi; no big brother looking over your shoulder while your reading, and deleting your books when you aren't looking, like with the Kindle. Reply
  • Zoomer - Friday, November 06, 2009 - link

    How is that more expensive than the Kindle? Reply

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