Freescale dominates the e-ink e-reader market. Their next generation i.MX508 e-ink e-reader processor allows for more performance, faster refresh rates (limited by e-ink technology), lower cost (e-ink readers could be sold at half the price, $99 e-ink e-readers are now possible), most cool is Freescale works to provide Android support on these next generation e-ink e-readers. This is cool because Android support can provide cool useful apps such as news readers, rss readers, chrome to phone functionality and more.
The new Freescale i.MX508 can power color e-ink screen devices.
Also see my interview with the product manager at Computex here. Asus has chosen to release this reflective based grayscale 8″ wacom touch LCD based e-reader. It has a user interface based on Qt and embedded Linux on a Marvell processor.
This video was released at: netbooknews.com
According to the new Pixel Qi products page at http://pixelqi.com/products, the 7″ version of the Pixel Qi screen, thus suitable for more portable tablet form factors and e-readers, may be on display and perhaps available as samples starting this January at the CES trade show.
7″ samples for CES 2011 possible
And according to their September 17th blog post:
New Screen Development: 7″
We are developing a 7” screen for tablets and ereaders that is planned for mass production in H1 2011. Samples will be available earlier, perhaps by late Q4 2010.
As I am typing this post on my awesome 7″ Archos 70 Internet Tablet, I can imagine how it would be to have the device be even lighter (than its current 300 grams, vs 380 grams Galaxy Tab and 680 grams iPad) with a smaller battery or to have it last upwards 50 hours with a reflective screen suitable for e-reading. Kindle 4 should definitely use this, and this is I think the reason for Amazon to be secretly preparing their alternative Android application store.
I am being video interviewed by Sasha Pallenberg of netbooknews.com about my awesome E-ink watch:
It doesn’t exactly have the Bluetooth features, those features will come with the also cool looking touch screen Sony Ericsson Liveview and similar Android Bluetooth remote control watches that are coming.
This video was released at: netbooknews.com
We got this press release. You can also submit ARM related news items from the submit news page.
Crystalfontz America, Inc. just launched their CFA910, an ARM based Single Board Computer (SBC) running Linux integrated with a high resolution 800×600 E Ink Vizplex display.
Now developers and OEMs have an easy to use and inexpensive (compared to other Vizplex dev kits) e-paper platform.
The whole unit is the size of a nice vacation postcard and very thin. It includes Ethernet, USB and serial interfaces, 128MB of DDR2 SDRAM and large capacity SD card storage.
Crystalfontz has also turned the engineer’s task of writing data to the E Ink display into easy lifting, with abstracted drivers and commands that save developers from having to learn the intricacies of the Broadsheet EPD controller language.
It is available with an optional touchscreen and expansion/development board.
Barnes and Noble just announced the NOOKcolor Android based LCD e-reader. I was wondering what ARM processor platform it may be based on and I just received the confirmation that it is TI’s OMAP3621 600Mhz ARM Cortex A8 at 45nm, it comes with POWERVR 3D graphics acceleration, and TMS320C64x+™ DSP technology for multimedia acceleration. Unlike the ARM11 based Pandigital Novel, this LCD e-reader should have enough power to provide some advanced hardware accelerated smooth user interfaces. The point at which Barnes and Noble and TI can develop smooth user interfaces that take full advantage of hardware acceleration will be interesting to see, as the customized e-reader application layers on top of Android that they have been showing on the NOOKcolor surely are interesting. Things like navigating through color magazines could be very interesting. Of course, I am also looking forward to this type of devices using the Pixel Qi reflective LCD screen technology. Also, it sounds interesting that TI provides OMAP3621 fir e-ink e-readers as well, with boasting of double as much battery runtime for e-ink page turns and with advertising of the fact that they want to support customized Android features for e-ink e-readers.
NOOKcolor runs on TI’s OMAP3621 (ARM Cortex™-A8 processor-based) applications processor—a member of the OMAP™ 3 processor family that was optimized for the consumer market. OMAP3621 delivers a robust, multitasking environment required to simultaneously run the eReader’s new feature-rich applications, which exercise the CPU, multimedia and graphics engines.
NOOKcolor represents the very first commercial launch of a reading-centric product using TI’s OMAP hardware and Android software architecture that we announced at CES 2010. And, today’s announcement is a prime example of how the OMAP 3 technology’s power and performance capabilities are leveraged in new consumer markets.
- Nook Color processor revealed: ARM Cortex A8-based TI OMAP3621 (engadget.com)
- Nook Color Runs On TI’s Cortex A8-Based E-Book Platform (crunchgear.com)
- Barnes & Noble Takes the Wraps Off of Nookcolor and Android Developers Program (technologizer.com)
- Barnes & Noble Unveils Full-Color, Android-Based Nook (mashable.com)
- Barnes & Noble Announces NOOKcolor: 7″ IPS Goodness In A $250 Package (androidpolice.com)
- Barnes & Noble Livens Up E-Reading With NOOKcolor (forbes.com)
It has a nice screen, I show it, and I give you my opinions on this e-reader. Sony is bringing a really nice E-ink Pearl based e-reader with a fantastic very sensitive infrared based touch screen. Though I wish it had WiFi and Android software for Chrome-to-Ereader functionality and Sharing and Synchronizing of Annotations and Reading to make Annotations and Reading more useful. It’s cool that Sony promote the “get unlimited ebooks for free from your digital library” concept. With WiFi, though, the integration with unlimited amounts of ebook repositories would be more seamless and probably more user friendly. If all you are looking for is an offline e-reader, with the latest e-ink screen technology, with touch-screen for page turns, dictionary/translator and for annotations and UIs, then this could be a great choice for you.
Also see my Grandmother reviewing this device in my video released last week and my 11-minute video interview with a Sony specialist unveiling it and discussing technical details about it at IFA.
- Exclusive: Sony PRS-650 Grandmother Review (armdevices.net)
- Review: Sony Reader Pocket Edition PRS-350SC (macworld.com)
- Sony Reader Pocket Edition (PRS-350SC) review (engadget.com)
5 million e-readers were sold in 2009, 15 million are expected to be sold this year. Most are e-ink based e-readers, but LCD based ones are coming as well (soon enough with Pixel Qi based LCDs as well). This one runs Android with a custom UI optimized for e-readers, may come with a touch-screen, WiFi and video codecs support as well even though it’s to be sold below 95€, to be confirmed.
Thanks BenMars for your reports from the Hong Kong Sourcing fair!
Watch my grandmother use this new touch screen Sony e-reader. It’s a product that is suitable for people like her, who like to read lots, who may enjoy having access to all the worlds books electronically on this thin and light device. In this review, after having barely used the device before, she tries to navigate through the menus, open some PDF files, make fonts larger (to not need glasses) and she even does a drawing.
Sony’s new infrared based touch screen technology is quite awesome, great for UI navigations and for making annotations, provides touch on e-ink without taking away any of the Pearl e-ink’s screens visibility. Too bad though that this PRS-650 doesn’t come with at least WiFi nor with a 3G option, would have made the touch screen more useful if it could interact with web apps and web contents. I want Chrome-to-phone like Chrome-to-eink functionality where a one click in the web browser on my Laptop or Android device, should beam that article over to my Connected e-reader’s reading queue. And then I want annotations to become more useful and collaborative. 10 people working on the same text should be able to wirelessly share annotations in real-time. When I annotate a text, it should automatically be attached as comments to any site using Sidewiki or some other such web annotation standards to interoperate with websites existing commenting systems (post scribbled annotations as comments!). A bluetooth or USB keyboard and a built-in kickstand should provide a setup for full speed text entry.