Pandigital’s handling of the Novel ereader-cum-tablet continues to provoke controversy, with the latest rumor being that the company plans to replace the existing white models with an alternative black version. According to The Digital Reader, multiple sources have suggested that a black 2GB version of the Novel is in the pipeline as the existing white version is recalled; the new Novel may not be solely a cosmetic change, either, since a unit with improved internal hardware has previously been spotted crossing the FCC.
The Kohl’s stores The Digital Reader checked with reported that the white Novel units they’d had on hand had been recalled and would be “replaced with new stock”. That differs from previous reports that suggested a third party had been contracted to install a new version of the firmware in-situ.
We’ve also heard that the widely reported “new” firmware for the Novel available to download from Pandigital’s support site is not, in fact, new, and doesn’t address the connectivity, touchscreen responsiveness or other issues the ereader has been demonstrating. There’s certainly a hunger out there for a low-cost ereader with tablet style functionality, so we’re hoping Pandigital can iron out the bugs and get the Android-based Novel back on shelves in a functional state.