Audiobooks are a surprisingly large industry. Playaway is hoping to redefine the way that people listen to their audiobooks. The Playaway is a completely self contained book and player. All you need is a single AAA battery. It comes with everything you need to listen to the book, including the earphones and the battery. You just pull a tab to activate the battery and plug in the headset and the book will be read to you. It will be a great gadget for people who want something to do on a plane or train, but don’t feel like reading or watching the terrible movie.
There seem to be a couple of problems with this in my mind. First, the battery is supposed to last for the whole playing of the book, but it reportedly doesn’t always do so. That could be annoying if it died out right in the good part and you didn’t have a spare. The second and bigger problem in my mind is the price. They start at $35 and go up from there. That’s more than a hardcover can be, which doesn’t make sense, especially since you can get audiobooks from several places on line and load them onto your MP3 player. Still, I can see uses for it as a quick-grab solution when out on the run.