Posts tagged e-reader
First, they ported Ubuntu to the Nook Color, and now the intrepid hackers at the XDA Developers Forum have overclocked its stock 800MHz processor to run at speeds up to 1GHz. The mod allows users to have their cake and eat it too, as the custom kernel ups the speed of the CPU while running it at a lower voltage, which means longer battery life — though we don’t know exactly how much longer. Apparently, the developer who wrote the code found that the system became unstable at the 1GHz level, but there were no such problems at 950MHz and below. Hit the source link to download the kernel and see for yourself what a supercharged Nook Color can do.
A rose by any other name would smell as sweet, and the same usually goes for tablets. But in the Great Venn Diagram of slate form factors, the ViewSonic MB-P702 seems to hover around the intersection of tablets and e-readers. It’s got a 7-inch 800 x 480 resolution touchscreen LCD display and functions as both an e-reader and a movie player — but not, as far as we can tell, an internet-based experience. Looking to the former function, the MB-P702 reads PDF, TXT, EPUB and others with handwritten notation capabilities. For video, we’re looking at MKV, AVI, WMV, MPG, MP4, and RMVB, with 1080p support and HDMI out. Unfortunately, all we’ve got is rough machine translation and some renders of the product. A sea of 7-inch slates on the horizon — ViewSonic’s own ViewPad 7 included. With any luck, it’s an “optimized experience” (and a competitive price point, knowing the company’s MO) that’d keep it in check.
It’s been a while since we’ve heard anything from iriver on the e-reader front, so this one isn’t a huge surprise. It looks like the Story is getting a nice, compact Touch edition, and while we don’t have full specs yet, we do have plenty of photos, and we also know it’s going to boast a 6-inch, touchscreen display (which appears to be some type of e-ink), 2GB of internal storage, with SDHC expansion up to 32GB. This one’s going to be for the Korean market only, so we don’t expect to get our hands on one anytime soon, but we can always dream. Another photo is below, hit the source link for more.
Looks like this one’s been sitting around in the shadows for awhile now, and in fact, we can’t even find the bona fide manufacturer of this here device. Boasting a 7-inch LCD (since when were those deemed fit for reading on?), built-in rechargeable battery, multimedia player, image viewer, optional FM radio, USB 2.0 connector and a user interface that almost looks a wee bit like Android at a glance. Regrettably, there’s no pricing or availability details to be found (nor any indication of an inbuilt wireless module), but we’re guessing the mystery owners here wouldn’t try moving this one for too much.
81diggsdigg Late to the touchscreen MID party, Chinese manufacturer SmartQ was determined not to miss another opportunity. That’s why it spent the month of April touting its new R7 e-reader as — you guessed it — the iPad killer. With the same ol’ 600MHz ARM11 and 256MB of RAM inside as its ho-hum MIDs, that claim’s quite a stretch, but our cohorts at Engadget Chinese actually found the Ubuntu-powered 7-inch SVGA touchscreen device moderately capable in a recent hands-on. Like fellow PMP / e-Reader the Onda VX560, the device supports 1080p in most every video format under the sun, reads e-books (PDF, EPUB and CHM), and has a built-in 3G modem for on-the-go capability. Ubuntu standbys Midori and Pidgin handle web browsing and IM, respectively, and it can even stream live video and purchase Chinese magazines through SmartQ’s services. Sluggish as it might be, for $1,680 RMB (about $250) we’d say that’s a pretty respectable featureset. Video after the break, specs and hands-on pics at our source links.
It’s debatable whether the act of reading on a Kindle or the like is actually preferable to perusing something bound and printed on paper, but regardless 1Cross Tech’s MIDhybrid helps to bring the two experiences closer together. It’s an e-reader with an E-Ink screen on the left and a small LCD plus keypad on the right, with a hinge in the middle that allows it to fold in half either way. It’s Marvell-powered and running Android 1.6 that, much like the tardy Alex, allows you to render content from the LCD over to the E-Ink screen. This could mean browsing PDFs, looking at spreadsheets, or maybe even playing Robo Defense at 1fps (probably not). The device also packs 3G, Bluetooth, and a front-facing webcam, making it sound like a very usable little thing, and while we do have a 15 minute video exploring the thing embedded below, we sadly don’t have a price or release date for you just yet.
We’ve spent all our time hearing about a DR-950, but today at CeBIT ASUS has trotted out a DR-900 as its first 9-inch ebook reader. It doesn’t appear manifestly different from what we’ve heard and seen already, with WiFi connectivity augmented with a 3G option, and a battery life rated to last a pretty radical 10,000 pages on a single charge. The interface on show clearly invites touch interaction, and we can fill in a few gaps with what we know of the DR-950, namely a 1024 x 768 resolution on a Sipix panel, 4GB of integrated storage, 3.5mm headphone jack, and support for PDF, TXT, MP3 and ePUB files. We’ll be tracking down an official price and release date shortly, as well as smudging a few fingerprints on these before the day is through.
After weeks of hearing about the DR-900 (or DR-950) e-reader, you had to know that we’d sprint (okay, walk at a brisk pace) over to ASUS’ booth to finally handle the touchscreen device in person. The 9-inch ebook reader was quite light in hand, and though we didn’t have Amazon’s Kindle DX with us, it appeared very comparable in size. As far as the reading experience goes, the preloaded text-based PDFs looked crisp on the 1024 x 768 display and as per usual the e-ink display took about a second or two to refresh. Unfortunately, here’s where we tell you that the former touch experience was less than stellar — we had to press quite hard to select the homescreen icons and light finger taps didn’t register when we tried to type “engadget” into the address bar. We got the hang of having to press firmly, but we’re happy there are the up and down arrows on the right edge for alternate navigation. Perhaps it will all be fixed up once it heads into production, though we don’t have details on when that will be. What we do know is that there’s a just lovely hands-on video for you after the break.