More E-readers Enter the Market

You don’t have to just settle for a Kindle or a Sony reader anymore. More and more publishers, booksellers and wireless companies are entering the e-book market. Did anyone say “Two’s company, three’s a crowd”?
Via ars technica

But both devices are built around a screen that uses E Ink technology to enable their extended battery life, and the company behind those screens will happily sell them to anyone. Now, it looks like a number of companies, including traditional publishers and wireless service providers, are interested in taking E Ink up on that offer, and releasing their own portable readers.

Verizon, which has decided to let any compatible device onto its network seems like the obvious carrier choice for any new wireless readers. So it’s not surprising to hear that the carrier has been approached; what may be surprising is the level of interest, as the carrier says five different companies have made inquiries.

If the wireless carriers are looking for partners, it appears that they’ll have a host of willing takers, most of them among the existing publishers. The costs of the materials that go into printing has been rising steadily, and is one of the sources of strain for the newspaper industry, forcing many of those publishers to redesign their sections in order to save on paper and print. Even if an electronic reader costs more up front, it could potentially save money in the long-term, especially if the publishers can negotiate a good deal with wireless carriers and/or convince their subscribers to pay for the privilege of owning one.

Meanwhile, fellow publisher Rupert Murdoch appears to be focusing on the next generation of display technology, as he’s told All Things D that his group is looking into a large, four color screen for its first foray into a dedicated electronic reader. Elsewhere, it has been reported that Barnes and Noble is considering giving the e-book market another shot, this time with its own dedicated reader.

What’s more interesting than the mere existence of multiple devices is the possibility that they’ll be accompanied by multiple experiments with business models, which would increase the possibility that someone will find one that both keeps the users happy while keeping those that produce the content in business.

Read the entire article here.

Image Source: CWOT


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