Barnes & Noble Ebook Reader Details Leak

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Barnes & Noble has been relatively tight-lipped about its upcoming ebook reader, but details are starting to leak out now that tell us what we might expect from the hardware.

Barnes noble logo

Barnes & Noble, big as it is in the US, is a little late to the ebook reading game, meaning that its package (both hardware and books available) is going to have to be impressive enough to lure people away from Amazon’s practically ubiquitous Kindle, which certainly seems to have grabbed the mindshare of the ebook market, if nothing else.

According to Gizmodo though, the Barnes & Noble ebook reader certainly boasts some interesting design decisions. Earlier rumours that the device would boast a full colour e-ink screen have since been contradicted by news that the device will instead have two different screens.

One is to be a black and white e-ink screen (of the kind featured on Amazon’s Kindle and some models of Sony’s Reader) but directly below that black and white screen will be a “multitouch display like an iPhone” which, combined with the fact that it’s running Google Android really opens up some interesting UI possibilities.

Of coruse, it’ll all come down to the books in the end, and while Barnes & Noble is a publisher, it’s likely not going to do phenomenally with only its own books to recommend it. In that respect, it’s quite fortunate that it also has access (in a similar fashion to Sony’s Reader, again) to Google Books’ vast library of out of print material.

If you’re at all interested, you should check out the Gizmodo article, they’ve managed to get together a gallery of shots of the device, and it certainly looks attractive.

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2 Responses to “Barnes & Noble Ebook Reader Details Leak”

  1. Wizartar Says:

    These devices are oldthink. The web is the perfect place for books but because of DRM we don’t get friendly multi-function devices but these custom readers. I don’t want to be carrying around with me a Phone, MP3, camera, video camera, ebook reader and a websurfer. Why isn’t there just a book reader application for something I already have like my iTouch? I’m starting to sound like an Apple fanboy. But I guess it’s just my Swissarmy knife mentality.

    • komplettie Says:

      The Touch is superb for ebooks, especially with the kinds of libraries that applications like Stanza offer pretty much out of the box. The only issue is that if you run your battery down listening to music/browsing the web/watching a video, you then can’t turn around and dig into a good book.

      I’m all for convergence devices, but given the remarkably low battery use of e-ink based solutions and the fact that books tend to do better in a slightly larger form factor it makes a lot of sense to use a dedicated device for them… that or just stick to plain old paper hardware (if you can consider a book to be a piece of hardware).

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