Sony have announced their third new ebook reader, the Sony Reader Daily Edition, and as has long been expected it includes wireless 3G connectivity. The new $399 device comes with a new version of their eBook Library software, 3.0, now Mac and PC compatible and which can also be used to organize notes made on touchscreen Sony ebook devices. Sony have also revealed Library Finder, an electronic “ebook borrowing” system.
Library Finder allows users to register for a digital “library card” and then check out a title for 29 days; after that point, it automatically deletes itself from the ebook reader. There are also new collaborations with ebook stores from Net Gallery, BooksOnBoard, Powell’s Books and American Booksellers.
As for the new hardware, the Daily Edition joins Sony’s other two recent models – Touch and Pocket – but has a larger, 7-inch touchscreen and can be used in portrait or landscape orientation. It also includes integrated 3G connectivity, in the same way that Amazon’s Kindle does, so as to download titles while mobile. It will be available in December and use AT&T 3G, though there will be no monthly charges for the data connectivity. Files can also be loaded via USB, with the internal memory good for 1,000 titles and a memory card slot to augment it. The casing is aluminum, while the E Ink display shows 16 levels of grayscale and, in portrait mode, can display around 30-35 lines of text.
EXTRA, EXTRA: SONY’S DAILY EDITION ROUNDS OUT NEW LINE OF DIGITAL READERS
Wireless 3G Reader Extends Sony’s Commitment to Bring
Open Digital Reading to Mass Audience
NEW YORK, August 25, 2009 ¾ Delivering on its promise to give consumers a variety of choices, Sony today announced the third member of its new Reader family – the Reader Daily Edition™, a highly-anticipated wireless model with 3G connectivity. The Daily Edition caps its new line of Reader products, joining the Reader Pocket Edition™ and the Reader Touch Edition™ which were announced earlier this month.
The Reader Pocket Edition and the Reader Touch Edition are available immediately, and the Reader Daily Edition will be available this December in time for the holidays at SonyStyle stores and SonyStyle.com.
“We firmly believe consumers should have choice in every aspect of their digital reading experience,” said Steve Haber, president of Sony’s Digital Reading Business Division. “Today, we take another large stride to deliver on that promise. We now have the most affordable devices on the market, the greatest access to free and affordable eBooks through The eBook Store from Sony and our affiliated ecosystem, and now round out our Reader offering with a wireless device that lets consumer purchase and download content on the go.”
A Family of Three Readers
The Reader Pocket Edition sports a five-inch electronic paper display packaged in a stylish chassis and is available in a variety of colors, including navy blue, rose and silver. It is available for the ground-breaking price of $199, making it the most affordable dedicated reading device on the market.
The Reader Touch Edition features a responsive, menu-driven six-inch touch screen panel that enables quick, intuitive navigation, page turning, highlighting and note taking with the swipe of a finger or by using the included stylus pen. It comes in red, black or silver and retails for about $299.
The Reader Daily Edition gives consumers wireless access via AT&T’s 3G mobile broadband network to Sony’s eBook store from just about anywhere in the U.S. Book lovers will be able to browse, purchase and download books as well as select newspapers and magazines when and where they want. There are no monthly fees or transaction charges for the basic wireless connectivity and users still have the option to side load personal documents or content from other compatible sites via USB.
The seven-inch wide, touch screen display provides for intuitive navigation and comfortable layout of content, including newspapers and magazines, whether you’re reading in portrait or landscape orientation. In portrait mode, about 30-35 lines of text are visible, making the experience very similar to that of a printed paperback book. A high contrast ratio with 16 levels of grayscale ensures that text and images are crisp and easy to read. The Daily Edition also boasts an attractive aluminum body with an integrated cover for durability. It has enough internal memory to hold more than one thousand standard eBooks and expansion slots for memory cards to hold even more. It will sell for about $399.
All three models feature Sony’s award-winning industrial design and an E Ink® Vizplex™ electronic paper display that emulates the look of ink on paper. Sony’s eBook Library software 3.0, which now includes support for many Apple® Macintosh® computers as well as PCs, makes it easy to transfer and read any Adobe® PDF (with reflow capability), EPUB, Microsoft® Word®, BBeB® files, or other text file formats on the Reader.
Access to Even More Content at the eBook Store by Sony
In addition to announcing a new family of Readers, Sony has also made several changes and improvements to its eBook Store to provide better access to an even greater variety of ebooks. Earlier this summer Sony announced the availability of more than one million free public domain books from Google, and the company made new releases and New York Times bestseller titles available for $9.99.
Today also marks the launch of Sony’s Library Finder application. Sony, working with OverDrive (www.overdrive.com), the leading global digital distributor of eBooks and to libraries, will now offer visitors to the eBook Store by Sony easy access to their local library’s collection of eBooks. Thousands of libraries in the OverDrive network offer eBooks optimized for the Sony Reader, and visitors can now find these libraries by typing their zip code into the Library Finder. Through the selected library’s download website, visitors can check out eBooks with a valid library card, download them to a PC and transfer to their Reader. At the end of the library’s lending period, eBooks simply expire, so there are never any late fees.
The Reader Pocket and Touch Editions, as well as available accessories such as AC adaptors, cases and covers with reading lights, are available now at SonyStyle.com and SonyStyle stores. Book lovers interested in trying out a Reader in person will also be able to find them for sale at Best Buy, BJs, Borders, Sam’s Club, Staples, Target, Toys“R”Us, Wal-Mart and other authorized retailers nationwide.
DIGITAL READING ECOSYSTEM EXPANDS FOR SONY’S READER
NEW YORK, August 25, 2009 ¾ Further evidence of the broad support for its open approach to digital reading, Sony today announced relationships with a variety of traditional and digital publishers who provide content in industry standard formats to create a universe of reading material compatible with the Reader.
All of these sites will offer content in the EPUB format, the International Digital Publishing Forum’s (IDPF) XML-based standard format for reflowable digital books and publications. EPUB has gained acceptance among major trade book publishers with dozens of publishers already producing the majority of their eBooks using the standard. Sony recently announced that the company is transitioning its entire content library to the EPUB format, giving consumers the freedom to purchase or download free eBooks from the eBook Store by Sony and read them on any EPUB-compatible device.
“From the beginning, we have said that an open format means more choice for consumers,” said Steve Haber, president of Sony’s Digital Reading Business Division. “Now, working with other industry leaders, we can provide a device that is compatible with the widest selection of content available. Readers can shop around for what interests them rather than be locked into one store.”
Sony’s eBook Store already provides access to more than one million public domain Google Books in EPUB format and, starting today, Sony’s Library Finder application will go live. Library Finder offers visitors to the eBook Store by Sony easy access to their local library’s collection of eBooks. Thousands of libraries offer eBooks optimized for the Sony Reader, and visitors can now find these libraries by typing their zip code into the Library Finder. Through the selected library’s download website, visitors can check out eBooks with a valid library card, download them to a PC and transfer to their Reader.
Other sites offering EPUB content include:
· Independent Bookstores – More than 200 participating members of the American Booksellers Association—including stores such as Tattered Cover (Denver, CO) and Vroman’s Bookstore (Pasadena, CA)—will have the ability to sell e-content to consumers beginning this fall. The stores using ABA’s IndieCommerce platform will offer content in the EPUB format and protected by Adobe’s Content Server 4 (ACS4) digital rights management, which is compatible with Sony e-Reader products. In addition, plans are underway to make Sony’s e-Reader devices available for purchase from independent bookstores in time for this holiday season. ABA is a not-for-profit trade organization devoted to meeting the needs of its core members – independently owned bookstores with storefront locations – through education, information dissemination, business products and services, and advocacy.
· BooksOnBoard – BooksOnBoard, the largest independent eBook bookseller and member of both the ABA and IDPF, has been a staunch supporter of the EPUB standard through its founder Bob Livolsi. BooksOnBoard was the first eBook site to offer the EPUB standard to its burgeoning customer base and has sold more EPUB formatted books than any other online bookstore. BooksOnBoard believes that the EPUB standard significantly benefits the publisher, authors and most importantly the consumer.
· NetGalley – NetGalley is an innovative and easy-to-use online service and connection point for book publishers, reviewers, media, librarians, booksellers, bloggers and educators. NetGalley delivers digital galleys and promotional materials to professional readers and helps promote new and upcoming titles. Starting today, NetGalley will support the Reader with the ability to download a protected PDF file and this fall the company will offer digital galleys in EPUB format.
· Powell’s Books and Powells.com – Powell’s Books is the largest independent bookseller in the world. Innovative since its inception in 1971, it was one of the first booksellers online (beginning in 1994), and one of the first to sell eBooks for reading devices (the Rocket eBook) in 1999. Powell’s offers EPUB content for a wide range of compatible devices, including the Sony line. Powell’s is an important player in the open access world of eBooks, where titles are provided by a wide range of publishers in a competitive retail environment, read on a range of devices, and downloaded and owned by millions of people around the world.
SONY DEBUTS DESTINATION TO CELEBRATE THE POWER OF WORDS
wordsmoveme.com Enables Readers to Share Favorite Passages and Literary Moments
NEW YORK – August 25, 2009 Continuously looking for ways to enhance the product experience for its customers, Sony today announced wordsmoveme.com, a new online destination empowering readers to share their favorite moments from the literature they love.
With the launch of wordsmoveme.com, Sony continues to deliver on its promise of making reading a shared experience. By connecting people through the literature and words they love, Sony enables them to express their individuality, share their own stories and discuss the impact that literature has on their lives.
Words Move Me is part of a broader social networking effort in which Sony Electronics is encouraging open, honest dialog with consumers. The Sony Electronics Community is the launching pad for this effort, which encompasses a corporate blog, video, photos, polls and profiles. For a list of all the Sony Electronics community sites go to: http://www.sonyelectronicscommunity.com/sony/communities/.
Sony launches wordsmoveme.com, an online destination, in conjunction with the unveiling of the new Sony Reader DailyTM Edition.
Words Move Me invites users to create a profile and share favorite literary passages.
It does not require use of a Reader device and is free for anyone to join and participate.
Steve Haber, president of Sony’s Digital Reading Business Division: “We strongly believe that the future of reading is a shared experience. We created wordsmoveme.com as a way for readers to remember their favorite moments, and share those moments with others – creating a richer and more interactive engagement with books.”
wordsmoveme.com is now live. A profile can be created by visiting the site.
Words Move Me site: www.wordsmoveme.com
Sony Reader site: www.sony.com/reader
Sony News site: www.sony.com/news
Sony celebrates the power of words, in launching wordsmoveme.com #SonyReader http://alturl.com/6z67
Editor’s Note: For additional information about the Reader digital book, your readers can call (888) 315-SONY, or visit Sony’s web site at: www.sony.com/reader. Members of the media looking for complete product specifications and digital images and other information are invited to visit Sony Electronics’ news and information web site at www.sony.com/news.