I guess I can't help it-- I'm skeptical. TANSTAAFL: There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch. The Bookeen reader is probably a workable device -- looks like they're the manufacturer for the STAReBOOK, after all-- but I just don't see enough value for the cost when you factor in a machine that will be orphaned out of the gate. The BAEN crowd is essentially trying to trim off Sony's margin, but when everything is factored in, I doubt the final cost will really be much less than the Sony unit, with less direct end-user support. If it came with an SDK and root/shell access, limited functionality could be improved. But US$300+ is still too much for me to pay for a device that is only a reader -- can't take notes, can't search, can't run any other apps, etc.
Hopefully I'll be proved wrong on this, the people who get one will be happy with it, the user development community will flourish, and eBooks will take off. But I think I'll sit this one out. My eBookwise 1150 still works well enough, at 1/3 the price.