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Old 06-03-2011, 10:11 AM   #16
HarryT
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Originally Posted by John F View Post
Couldn't it effect everyone who bought from Sony, due to the DRM? I'm a little iffy on the how Adobe DRM works, but...

Sony would probably close their store, so any ADE DRMs purchases would be locked to the registered devices at the time the store closed?

Someone please correct me if I'm wrong.
You're wrong . Your books will be readable on any ADE device registered to your Adobe account.
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Old 06-03-2011, 10:27 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John F View Post
Couldn't it effect everyone who bought from Sony, due to the DRM? I'm a little iffy on the how Adobe DRM works, but...

Sony would probably close their store, so any ADE DRMs purchases would be locked to the registered devices at the time the store closed?

Someone please correct me if I'm wrong.
What HarryT said. The DRM verification is done through Adobe's servers, not Sony's; the books would be able to read on any device activated through ADE.

They wouldn't be re-downloadable after Sony closes the store (obviously), and if Adobe changes its DRM system again, the books might not be usable, but that's not likely to happen soon.

Books in the older LRX format wouldn't be usable on new devices, but that's already the case; people would just have to make sure to re-download those in the newer epub format before Sony closes.

As always, the advice for keeping permanent access to one's purchases is "download, crack & backup;" you never know when an online store or software company is going to change its marketing strategy so that previous purchases no longer work on new devices. In this case, however, access to Sony store ebooks isn't based on Sony's actions; the DRM goes through Adobe. Odds of Adobe changing its DRM so that older ebooks won't work on new devices are low. And Adobe's been relatively polite about DRM--when they phased out their last DRM system (the one that worked through Acrobat 6), they announced it long in advance and warned people to re-download those books through ADE.
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Old 06-03-2011, 10:35 AM   #18
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Thanks for correcting me, and sorry for the misinformation.
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Old 06-03-2011, 05:42 PM   #19
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Sony has the better build quality.

I wouldn't buy a Kobo due to the lack of buttons. I like to stick my sony in a freezer bag and read in the tub, touch screens do not work in a bag?

Wifi is useless for me. I get my books for free and have no issues using a cable.

RIP Sony if that's the case, but I don't regret my purchase at all.
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Old 06-03-2011, 06:33 PM   #20
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Over Memorial Day weekend, the weather was good, and it means going to the mall! (I love window shopping.) The two places happen to have Sony stores. One was the brand new Sony Store that's modelled after the Apple stores.
(http://www.ienlive.com/tech/exclusiv...-city-preview/)
(Aside: people living going to Century City mall must be tech-savvy - and rich -- It's near Beverly Hills. Within walking distance are the Sony Store, Apple Store, and soon-to-open Microsoft Store.)

At that Sony Store, they were only selling the PRS 350. I asked about the other models and a store person says they are discontinued. I asked if Sony is getting out of the ereader market and he says something like, no way, ereader is the wave of the future.

At another Sony store, which is a small, Sony Style store, they were selling the PRS 350 and PRS 950. I happen to talk to a manager. When I asked if Sony is discontinuing the ereaders, the manager said, if Sony were, they would be the first to know about it and she didn't know anything, and the readers are selling pretty well.

So who knows, take what they say with a grain of salt. Some conflicting info regarding PRS 950 -- why is the other store selling them? Until we get some clarification from higher ups (any Sony employees in the forum? I see Kobo employees in it and responding) anything including this is speculation.
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Old 06-03-2011, 07:02 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by delphin View Post
I have seen the video tour previews for both the new Kobo Touch and Nook Touch readers and trust me on this, if Sony doesn't do something, these guys will MURDER THEM.

Not only do both these new eReaders sell for about HALF what the Sony 650 does, but they also both offer WIFI, as well as a host of features that users have been requesting from Sony for years like user selectable fonts, plus more cross-compatible syncable reader apps for Smart Phones, iPads, and Android Tablets.


It would appear that Sony has only a few choices -

a) Lower prices on existing models, and upgrade their software to offer what features that they can.
(obviously Sony can't magically offer WIFI on the 350 or 650 by a software upgrade, but they can easily match features like user selectable fonts)

b) Quickly offer new models with more features at lower more competitive prices.

c) Try to retain their price premium by offering models with unique features not available on their competitors products (color eInk for example).

d) Walk away from the tough American market and sell only to international markets. (unfortunately the Sony Store can't currently legally sell to these markets)

e) Just give up . . .
There are things Sony can do. A lot is elaboration on the above post. If you think about it, the Nook and the Kobo are based on the current Sony Readers which have been on market for half a year. Plus they only have half the capabilities (limited PDF support, no landscape, etc.) Since Sony was in market first, the prices were higher for licensing the IR touch in small volumes. (Seriously, Sony, you couldn't have licensed it exclusively? For even one year?!) Also, why Sony settled their Readers with proprietary technology (two kinds of memory storage - Sony memory sticks and SD cards!, but no wi-fi in every models?!) leading to higher prices, only Sony can answer.

Sony needs to
1) Reduce the price. Currently Best Buy and Borders have reduced price clearance sales. Sony Style stores are having promotion for PRS 350 at $120. But why isn't the price reduced on Sonystyles online?
2) Next Readers need to have wi-fi across the line and ability to change fonts. No more hacking to change fonts.
3) Sony likely won't follow to become a me-too reader, selling at rock bottom price. The reader market is still in its infancy. There are a lot of room for differentiation. The next Reader readily can have HD e-ink, like the iRiver HD.
(http://www.engadget.com/2011/01/07/i...ader-hands-on/)
If you look at the video, the higher res makes the e-ink much darker, like real print.
Sony is also working some some e-paper technology. Maybe they can leverage that. The future e-reader is not going to be a 6-in. reader. It'll be magazine or book size and magazine thin like those you see in Microsoft videos. Sony can justify its higher prices by doing those. But only marginally higher (not 50%!).
4). If Sony pulls out of the ereader market, I doubt they'll close the ebookstore. They can still sell books with their tablets and Android devices, like iBooks.
5) If Sony is out of US market, Sony will concentrate only in Japan, Europe, ceding other places to Kindle.

Sony started the ereader business. They could have made their readers the iPods of ereading. Instead, it's taken over by the Kindle. Apple out-Sonyed them with the iPod too. Sony can't execute to dominate any field in which they were the first players, because of added proprietary and unnecessary technology (Sony memory sticks, ATRACS). If Sony pulls out the the ereader market, even if it's just in the U.S., it'll be an utter embarrassment. The press will have a field day.

Maybe someone with inside info can answer, like the Sony Readers' future, and why are stores dropping them. Bad sales? Constant short supplies?

Last edited by sonyreaderfan; 06-04-2011 at 07:06 AM.
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Old 06-03-2011, 08:16 PM   #22
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If it is the end of the line for the Sony readers, I'll be sorry to see them go.

When I was first researching e-Readers after starting with eBooks on my iPhone, I received a PRS-600 as a Christmas gift. It would not have been my first choice at the time but it quickly won me over with the ease of use, overall quality, and collections for organizing my books, and Calibre makes managing the collections easy. My only complaint was the glare on the touch screen so I've since switched to a 650.

From what I've read of the upcoming Kobo and Nook, the Kobo can organize the books by author and title, but I've spent a lot of time correcting title and author metadata in my books through Calibre, and I don't know if the Kobo will pick that up.

The Nook seems to want you to buy only from Barnes and Noble, with books from other stores given second class status on the device. The money I would save compared to a Sony reader at current pricing wouldn't pay for replacing my existing books with NookBooks. I like having choices when it comes to buying books, even if the Agency model from the publishers makes it harder to shop by price.

My experience with both Sony readers is that they 'just work'. Since I spend my days (and some nights) working as a computer programmer wrestling with technology that often doesn't work, when I am done working having technology that 'just works' can be worth more than money.
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Old 06-03-2011, 09:51 PM   #23
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I certainly hope Sony readers stick around. I really do like mine. My 350 goes everywhere with me. You never know when I'll find a few minutes to read or show it off to other people. They don't even have to ask about it, I like showing it off.
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Old 06-03-2011, 10:47 PM   #24
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This will seem off-topic, but it's peripherally, just hang on...

Quote:
Originally Posted by ardeegee View Post
Also news came out recently that they are scaling back on the features of the PS4 and their next portable game unit.
In their losses, Sony actually posted a millions-dollar profit in the PS3 division, and this comes after years of blogs, forums, and articles claiming the PS3 was a disaster, among other doom-and-gloom statements. And "scaling Back" isn't quite right, but that's another topic for ultra-geeks.... guilty!

As pointed out, the Earthquake and taxes were the primary causes of the loss. And all the attacks on the PS3 were wrong.

Now let's move to the Reader. History is repeating here: get out of the market; it's hopeless with the Nook's price-point, etc.

So lesson #1 is don't count Sony out. The PS3 was counted out, called far worse than the above, and it's profitable. Okay, that happens to be all the lessons.

I absolutely agree the Reader needs to drop its price. It's needed to for ages. Look at it compared to the Kindle. It is, however, a higher quality product in terms of weight, ergonomics and build. The utlra-light-weight is probably no longer an advantage (the Nook is probably quite light), nor is the pearl touch screen. But it's still ergonomic and solidly built metal. I would certainly continue buying Sony due to quality. But will others? There is something to be said for brand loyalty... but how much? I don't know.

Okay, so once again, I agree on the price issue. Hopefully Sony will too. But remember lesson #1: when everyone out there is writing off Sony's gaming division, they turn a profit.

It's very early to be digging the grave marked "Here lies Sony Reader." My shovel's staying in the garage, and I recommend yours does too.

-Pie
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Old 06-04-2011, 12:15 AM   #25
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I have had a 500, 505. 700, and now a 650. The 650 is close to perfect, although wifi for use with instapaper (or something similar) would be great. Wifi for getting books from an online store is not an issue, because I never let an ebook live longer than a few seconds before it is freed from the binds of the great evil DRM. And for this side loading is necessary.

That said, if Sony does drop out, I think the Kobo would fit my needs for reading. And realistically, Sony does need to be cautious with the pricepoint for any future ereader.
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Old 06-04-2011, 10:23 AM   #26
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Like mine - my wife and I have 650s and I just gor a 350 as a back up. LOVE the fact that it reads everything and doesn't lock you in to a supplier.

Hope they keep going - after all, they made the walkman succeed on the same basis - deliver a great platforn and let other people supply the consumables...
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Old 06-04-2011, 01:24 PM   #27
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I think the 350 is a great niche product - no way should they give up their 5" product, while the 950 is competitive for those who prefer touchscreens and wifi. It's the 650 I think that's really not competitive (yes, we love ours) with the Kindle/Nook.
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Old 06-04-2011, 03:25 PM   #28
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In the article, there's some detail
Quote:
Sony said it now expected to post a net loss of 260 billion yen ($3.2-billion U.S.), due to a non-cash charge of around 360-billion yen related to Japanese tax credits.
that suggests that their fundamental business isn't in too bad a shape (i.e. at least 100 billion yen profit), so any talk of them pulling out of markets due to losses would seem to be completely unfounded...
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Old 06-04-2011, 04:20 PM   #29
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Let's start helping Sony to design the best 5" ever. I want solar charging hidden behind the e-ink screen (the first fully green ereader)
What do you all suggest?
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Old 06-04-2011, 05:27 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sonyreaderfan View Post
5) If Sony is out of US market, Sony will concentrate only in Japan, Europe, ceding other places to Kindle.
Other places? What about the whole of Asia, Latin America, Africa? The only non English-language market of the Kindle is Germany. Even though it took them ages to open their German Kindle store they didn't even bother to offer a German interface for the Kindle. Other markets are far less forgiving about something like that than Germany.
Amazon doesn't even have a shop in many major European countries, e.g. Spain. To declare the Kindle as something of a global standard is rather premature.
Kobo and Nook are irrelevant for most of the world.
With the currency debasement of the US $ it gets increasingly unattractive to sell goods to the US for companies that don't operate in an environment that's pegged to the Dollar. It is therefore quite reasonable not to enter into any price war in the US if you can sell your products everywhere else with a much higher profit margin.
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