An update on eReaders · January 11, 2010

Coincidentally to my last post on eReaders, there have been a lot of recent developments on the subject. I’ve been following the CES 2010 coverage on new eReaders being unveiled. Of all of the devices being debuted, I’m really interested in two of them.

The first is the Alex Reader by Spring Design. This one, like the Nook, is powered by Google’s Android OS. It has a larger bottom screen, which is also in color. To me the appeal of this one is that it’s running Android, but isn’t tethered to Barnes & Noble. According to Reuters, it looks like this device may be partnering up with Borders, which would be awesome.

The other one that I’m very interested in and plan to watch closely, is the Ocean by Copia. There’s much less information available about their family of eReaders than there is about the others, but to me they have the cleanest looking, most attractive eReaders of anyone I’ve seen. Copia is boasting the first “social” reading experience, where they aim to build a community around e-reading that leverages existing social networks. I’m really hoping to get my hands on one of their eReaders in the near future. Here’s a link to some images of Copia’s eReaders on Flickr.

The overall burning issue that’s still on my mind about eReaders is that unless there’s a decent market behind them for obtaining eBooks, it’s still a losing proposition for me. I’m hoping that somewhere in the near future, the DRM for eBooks can be standardized or just go away. Specifically, I’m hoping that the eReader market explodes and people start buying tons of devices other than the Kindle, making Amazon realize that they should be capitalizing on allowing those folks to buy from their Kindle market.

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