Plastic Logic’s sleek, slim, touchscreen e-reader

PlasticLogic.jpg

As promised, Plastic Logic unveiled the details of its new e-reader yesterday, and it is a serious challenge to the Kindle.

The Plastic Logic device takes a very Apple-like approach to the e-reader. Eschewing two-dimensional smallness for slimness, the Plastic Logic is roughly A4 sized at 8.5 by 11 inches yet is less than 3/10ths of an inch thick.

But the major wank: the Plastic Logic is touch screen. Gone is the Kindle’s hideous jumble of strangely aligned chiclet keys: all navigation on the Plastic Logic is done by gestures. Text input is handled by a virtual keyboard.

Right now, the Plastic Logic only features Micro-USB and Bluetooth, but they promise Wi-Fi functionality by the time it ships in 2009. Battery life? About a week. The Kindle’s killer feature — omnipresent EVDO — wasn’t mentioned,

It looks gorgeous. The dimensions are a tad large for books, but perfect for the newspapers and magazines Plastic Logic seems bent on approaching for content. In truth, though, I hope this gets snatched up by someone larger, who can handle the content distribution side: an Amazon branding would bring its huge library of ebooks and the EVDO carrier deals that make the Kindle so attractive despite its righteous pummeling with the uglystick.

Plastic Logic says, when released, it’ll be “competitive” with the Kindle in price.

Plastic Logic’s Reader Is Thinner, Less Ugly Than Kindle [Gadget Lab]

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18 Responses to Plastic Logic’s sleek, slim, touchscreen e-reader

  1. hep cat says:

    You know what I want is something exactly like this , with wifi or bluetooth or whatever, that I can “print” documents on to so that I can use my desktop screen(s) for something more dynamic. Give the thing a printer driver , and I’d pay twice the price

  2. Jeff says:

    This seems like the next step in making a replacement for paper books. I’d love one of these to read the news paper off of, or book.

  3. Aaron says:

    Clearly, this thing is doomed already. Either it will have some crippling flaws, be expensive as hell or just never actually hit the market.

    Why? Because I can’t believe that I’d see a e-book reader I’d spend money on in the next, dunno, five years or so. ^_^

    (Ok, maybe it will just be crippled by DRM or something.)

  4. matt_w says:

    oh man this would be perfect for comics! i hope it isn’t drm’d so it can be crammed full of cbr files!

  5. Enochrewt says:

    Sexy, sexy gadget. Unfortunately be a competitive price to the kindle will make it unsuccessful. They need to subsidize these things like cable boxes or video game consoles and make money on the content purchased.

  6. isaacd says:

    I think it could work for books: turn it landscape for 2 page novel reading pleasure. That would be a sweet feature.

  7. Beamish says:

    It is not “roughly A4 sized at 8.5 by 11 inches” – it is exactly Letter sized at 8.5 by 11 inches.

    This is the right size needed for magazines and newspapers where scanning the page is as important as reading the text. Now they just need to engineer in a fold to 8.5 x 5.5 inches (roughly half-A4 sized, if you will) and it would serve well for books when folded.

  8. muteboy says:

    #9, Agreed, but I’d like the same styling as this, but in a smaller format.

    #10, it’s relevant to me. I would be happy with a small screen as a window on a large page.

  9. novakreo says:

    Beamish, it is not “roughly half-A4 sized”, it is exactly roughly A5 sized.

  10. muteboy says:

    Lovely, but too big. Maybe another model could be smaller.

  11. mappo says:

    I am sooo ready to switch my newspaper subscription over to something like this.

  12. Brettspiel says:

    This would be sweet filled to the brim with D&D manuals.

  13. musicalwoods says:

    This would be wonderful for my digital textbooks if priced right. I’d even use this at work, where they disallow computers but welcome books and ebook readers.

  14. dculberson says:

    Muteboy, the Sony Reader fills the “want it to be small” niche; if you’re reading things like research journals or newspapers, you don’t want a small screen. The small screen size kills the Reader and Kindle for my needs.

  15. Anonymous says:

    If you go to their web site you will see that they are gearing this toward the professional market not casual reading. I will buy one of these as soon as it is available and stop lugging around manuals, reference texts and pdf documents. According to the web site it will also handle Powerpoint, Word, and Excel, so that about does it for me. It will have wifi when it ships in addition to the touch screen and blue tooth already demonstrated, sweet. If I can also read books on my lunch break, so much the better. Even if it is more than a Kindle I can’t wait to get one. Check out you tube and myspace for videos. The refresh rate looks very fast, faster than Kindle (must use the new epson controller) and the interface looks pretty slick.

  16. jimkirk says:

    Make it more than a reader. Add some features, I/O, and I’d like to buy this as an ultralight, long battery life tablet computer. I’d even pay extra for those features. $360 for a reader, no. $500 for a 0.3 inch thick tablet computer, yes. A color display is nice, but for lots of things I need at work I don’t need color. Spread sheets, document editing, maintaining a notebook with some sort of drawing application.

    Something I could fold and/or fit in a pocket or hang from a belt would be nice. I’m currently holding on to my Palm PDA because the iTouch and iPhone don’t have a spreadsheet application (and wasn’t Apple claiming they ran a version of OS X? Where’s Pages, Numbers and Keynote for the iPhone?). Even then, only seeing three or four column and a dozen or so rows is sort of confining.

    Still, I haven’t seen any info on what the resolution is, does anybody know? Also, it appears to have gray scale. Dithered? 2 bit? 4 bit depth? More?

  17. bardfinn says:

    A large percentage of the population would like to not need to break out their magnifying reading glasses to decode the tiny squiggles on the reader gadget. “too big” is not relevant.

  18. dculberson says:

    I want one now!!

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