The rising sun marks the end of night just as the birth of digital brings forth the death of paper. Well maybe not quite so dramatic, but eBooks are definitely changing the way we read. With more and more companies jumping on board the cost of eBook readers have been steadily decreasing, and now there is another company on the eBook wagon; Acer, with its new LumiRead to go on sale towards the end of 2010.
eBook readers have been produced since the 1990’s, the first models utilizing LCD screens, much like PDA’s or handheld game machines. Later in 2000’s Sony became the first company to utilize electronic ink; a method of displaying type that is easier on the eyes and very similar to that of traditional paper. After Sony, Amazon came out with the Kindle in 2007. Now a multitude of companies are producing readers, ranging from Dell to Samsung.
So what about Acer’s LumiRead?
The LumiRead uses a pretty standard 6 inch screen, about the size of a paperback’s page. It boasts WiiFi and will possibly utilize 3G technology in future models; allowing users to download titles or surf the net while they are on the go. Unlike the Sony eBook reader but similar to Amazon’s kindle the LumiRead will also have a QWERTY keyboard allowing readers to become authors or (much more likely) simply allowing readers to write emails. It will also have 2 gigabytes of built in memory giving the reader the option of storing 100o’s of titles, pictures and songs.
So why eBook?
That’s a good question. Online there are tens of thousands of free titles ready for download, but most free works with mass literary value are usually classics no longer protected under copyright laws (unless you use less legal methods). As for purchasing eBook titles, their costs are usually very similar to buying the actual print book itself.
The main advantage to eBook readers such as the LumiRead seems to be convenience and the love for all gadgets new and cool burning in our soul. And when the technology becomes more widespread, its affordability will increase to the point where even the most frugal electronics lover will be willing to buy one.