Capturing The Essence Of Book With The Sony Reader

by : Jason Cox

The Sony Reader is an innovative way to experience books and reading in general. The Sony Reader uses elink technology to power the Readers impressive display. Unlike previous displays that used CRT or LCD technology elink creates a display that is as clear as words on tangible paper.

The technology uses microcapsules that appear as black and white, unlike previous displays, which used glowing cells. The Reader boasts four levels of grey scale. Elink technology is high resolution at 170 pixels per inch and allows the screen to be 100 percent visible in direct sunlight. The display can also be viewed at a 180-degree angle due to its high contrast qualities. The display is a remarkable six inches.

Another benefit is that the Sony Reader has no backlight making it easier on the eyes for reading at length. Furthermore each page is displayed as a static image with no flicker to add strain to the eye.

The Sony Reader can be taken just about anywhere because it is lightweight and compact. It weighs a mere nine ounces and measures 6.9 inches by 5.8 inches and is a tiny 1/2 inch thick. The Reader has a rechargeable battery that can be fully charged in four hours and will hold a charge for the equivalent of 7,500 page turns.

Sony uses state of the art technology to allow consumers to download electronic books to their personal computers and then transfer them to their Sony Readers. The Sony Reader will give customers access to over a thousand book titles using Connect Ebookstore database. Connect will also allow readers to browse titles and manage downloads.

Any book purchased using Connect can be read up to six devices, one of which being the personal computer. Sony says that once purchased the books will be available at anytime, they do not expire. In addition, Sony allows consumers to register five additional people to their account to share the reading experience. However, data cannot be transferred from one personal computer to another.

This electronic book reading experience is getting huge support from major publishers. Publishers including Random House, HarperCollins Publishers, Penguin-Putnam, Simon & Schuster and Time Warner Book Group are excited about the Sony Reader.

The Sony Reader has an internal memory of 64 megabytes, but also has the option for an external memory card. This feature allows readers to have access to many documents at the same time.

In addition, the Sony Reader displays more than just traditional books. It can also be used to display JPEGS, personal documents, Adobe PDFs and news feeds. The reader also plays audio files such as MP3s. And besides text comics and graphic novels will be available.

However, currently the Sony Reader does not have a keypad or any other means to make notes on the text that is being read. At present there are no plans in the works at Sony to add this feature.

The Sony Reader retails for $349 and includes an AC charger, USB cable, a user guide, CD-ROM, and a trendy soft black case. Additional accessories are available to purchase to compliment the Sony Reader. A cradle for the Reader is also available for purchase for $49.95. Portable Reader covers can be bought for $39.95.

Currently Borders bookstore has exclusive right to sell the Sony Reader, and as of September 2006 the device was available to order. Borders bookstore will maintain its rights to sell the Reader for an undisclosed amount of time. Orders can also be placed online at the Sony website.

Sony has announced plans to continue research and development to enhance the Reader in the near future.