Today, Nicolas Gary from the French website www.actualitte.com contacted me about their exclusive first look at the next generation Bookeen eReader, the ORIZON. As the article is in French, Nicolas has kindly written a short overview in English.
Bookeen is introducing a new eBook Reader called ORIZON, supporting ePub files (with or without DRM) of course. It comes with a 6 inch touchscreen display, WiFi and Bluetooth (Have fun! This is the first Reader in France with a wireless connection!) What else? An accelerometer, so you can read in landscape or portrait mode.
Weight : 226g for 12.25 x 18.5 x 0.75 cm and we know a few specifications like the resolution, 167 dpi and 16 levels of grey.
Bookeen says there will also be a new version of the Boo Reader software.
For the last few months I’ve been using the Sony Reader Touch Edition and although I think there are many amazing features, that dark shiny touch screen really does bug me. The shininess I could live with, but I really do hope the Orizon’s screen brightness doesn’t suffer from the addition of the touch screen like the Sony does.
At the moment there are a multitude of eReaders coming onto the market (all supporting EPUB it seems :- ) but I get the feeling the Bookeen might be one step ahead of most of them.
I’ve had a crazy old time since I returned home from the Frankfurt Book Fair last week so this is the first chance I’ve had to sit down and write a little about my time there, and an interesting time it was.
I again had the pleasure of having lunch with IDPF Executive Director, Michael Smith. There was no real agenda, it was just a chance for us to have a good chin-wag about ePub, how things are moving for the format and such other things. This year the IDPF held three sessions but due to my day job duties in London I only managed to attend one of his sessions; missing what I’m sure was an extremely interesting ‘EPUB Update and Tweaks and Tricks for EPUB on Devices’ session presented by Keith Fahlgren from O’Reilly – I’m wholey dissapointed about that.
Still, I did manage to attend the ‘New and Updated eBook Reading Devices’ which was rather interesting.
For this session there were four speakers; Michaël Dahan (Bookeen), Neelan Choksi (Lexcycle Stanza), Willem Endhoven (iRex Technologies) and finally Richard Siegersma (ECO Reader). All the speakers had some interesting things to say but a couple of points stuck out.
I was just over at Bill McCoy’s blog (Adobe) reading his latest post about the current number of dedicated eBook readers which support the Adobe DRM’d EPUB format. Of course there are a number of other reading devices, such as the iPhone that can read non-DRM EPUB eBooks, but it is still surprising how many there actually are.
Bill himself seems suprised, saying, “this is faster take-up than even this optimist had hoped for, given our launch less than six months ago of the enabling Adobe Reader Mobile 9 SDK that’s been integrated into all of these products.”
Whether you believe DRM is right or wrong, the positive side of this is that we are seeing more vendors supporting the one eBook format.
We are however still waiting to see if the Amazon Kindle’s will start supporting EPUB; will they use their own DRM – will they use any DRM at all. Let us also not forget Apple, what formats will they support on their upcoming tablet.
I just noticed on the Bookeen website that their new mini eBook reader, the Cybook Opus, is now available. I have to say this does look a very cute reader.
There’s nothing spectacular regarding the specifications but with a 5″ screen (4″ x 3″- 101mm x 76mm), this is a very pocketable eReader. The best part about this for me is their support for the ePub format, which includes the Adobe DRM (EPUB and PDF).
It looks like they’ve teamed up with BooksOnBoard, who will be providing the official Opus eBooks.
At £215 it’s not exactly the cheapest reader out there, but many will be happy to pay the extra penny’s just for its portability.