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Old 03-11-2008, 06:40 AM   #1
Alexander Turcic
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Netronix/PVI 9.7" & 6" e-readers

Update: Lisa of Netronix joined the discussions and revealed a tentative release date:
  • EB-100: end of June 08
  • EB-300: end Sept 08
Also, both devices seem to feature 3G connectivity, which would be heaven beyond words for every serious traveler.

Original:
Details are a bit hazy on this one, but it looks like Taiwan-based Netronix Inc. is diving into serious e-book business. On their website you'll find two featured e-book readers, the EB-100 with a 6-inch E ink screen, and the EB-300 with a spine-tingling 9.7-inch screen. The EB-100 looks very much like the other 6-inch e-book readers we've seen coming from the Far East, so let's focus on the EB-300:
  • Screen: 9.7" E Ink e-paper, touch-enabled
  • Resolution: 1200 x 825 pixels, 170 dpi, 4 grayscale
  • Dimensions: 255mm(H )x 195mm(W) x 14mm(D)
  • Memory: 4Gbit NAND type (Flash), 64MB (SDRAM)
  • Storage: SD Card
  • Connectivity: 802.11g Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
  • Power: 3.7V 2100mAh Li-ion
  • Interfaces: 2x USB, 1x stereo
  • OS: Windows 5.0
  • E-book formats: TXT, PDF, RTF, HTML, BMP, JPG, GIF, PNG, MP3, AAC
Full specs attached.

Adding some meat to this story, earlier this year famed E Ink panel manufacturer PVI bought shares of Netronix with the goal to "jointly enter the e-book market." Now we're yearning for a release date.

Thanks to eagle-eyed lee1234 for the news!
Attached Files
File Type: pdf DS-EB-300.pdf (40.1 KB, 1831 views)
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Old 03-11-2008, 06:54 AM   #2
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Ah, and the specs say "touchscreen" too, don't they ?

Another severe case of "I want" then.
As for now: I want 1) a date and 2) a pricetag.

Another in the ring beside Jinkes "we wait for it - niner".
Professional Readers with large pdf in mind like myself may see the fulfillment of their dreams sidle nearer.
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Old 03-11-2008, 08:04 AM   #3
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No mobi support and I wonder if pdf means DRMed pdf?

Interesting that Windows CE is the operating system, you should be able to install MobiPocket and eReader if I'm not mistaken.
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Old 03-11-2008, 09:37 AM   #4
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Very interesting. I wonder how it handles screen refreshes with the Windows CE OS. If it's a native driver, any windows CE application should work for it...
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Old 03-11-2008, 09:43 AM   #5
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I could be using just the CE kernel with a custom GUI, like e.g. WordsGear.
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Old 03-11-2008, 10:03 AM   #6
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It looks alright I guess, and the specs is pretty damn nice. I hope it will be released soon to a decent price. The windows CE is pretty nice IF it works well. If you got a thouchscreen there is not really any need for a quick refreshrate (no need for a mouse) to navigate and use it.
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Old 03-11-2008, 10:24 AM   #7
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A touch screen may be a requirement (at least in practice) for Windows CE.

Unfortunately, Windows CE is not quite the same as Pocket PC or Windows Mobile. See the Wikipedia. So, MobiPocket and eReader might need Netronix's active support to get their software running on this device.
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Old 03-11-2008, 10:44 AM   #8
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Nearly all Personal Navigating Assistents [PNA] use Windows CE. It's a crippled windows mobile with read only OS part, it can be tricky to start own apps.

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Old 03-11-2008, 10:47 AM   #9
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The answer I see missing is "battery life?" With all those bells and whistles, I'm wondering how long even that big ol' 2100mAh battery will last.
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Old 03-11-2008, 10:59 AM   #10
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With a windows os you would think it would have microsoft Lit on board
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Old 03-11-2008, 11:29 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wallcraft View Post
A touch screen may be a requirement (at least in practice) for Windows CE.

Unfortunately, Windows CE is not quite the same as Pocket PC or Windows Mobile. See the Wikipedia. So, MobiPocket and eReader might need Netronix's active support to get their software running on this device.
Right, but there is a CE version of the µBook reader available - that's all I'd need :-)

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Old 03-11-2008, 11:47 AM   #12
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Oooh Windows CE! Does that mean there's a chance this thing can browse the web?

I'm dying to pick up one of these ebook readers for work, but so far none of these companies have made one suitable for getting work done on (big screen, PDF support, web browser, fast enough processor to display PDFs and web pages).

I still wish Fujitsu would let me give them money for a Flepia.
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Old 03-11-2008, 11:54 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by manekineko View Post
Oooh Windows CE! Does that mean there's a chance this thing can browse the web?

I'm dying to pick up one of these ebook readers for work, but so far none of these companies have made one suitable for getting work done on (big screen, PDF support, web browser, fast enough processor to display PDFs and web pages).

I still wish Fujitsu would let me give them money for a Flepia.
If has wifi built in so it could be possible. A copy of embeded CE may or may not have the libraries to support a Browser, depending on the options they purchased from Microsoft. It might not even have the ability to get to the OS but the fact that it has wifi might be a good sign that it has other features to use it. Unfortunately the specs are really slim on this device so far.
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Old 03-11-2008, 11:58 AM   #14
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With a windows os you would think it would have microsoft Lit on board
I believe lit needs PPC which is considerably more expensive for them to license than WinCE. (Check our wiki for the difference.) It might be possible to get enough of the dll's to get it to work but so far there is no Microsoft Reader available in that form factor and Microsoft themselves seem to be backing off in support of their own reader in Windows Mobile 6.0 although this product is based on the older 5.0 OS.

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Old 03-11-2008, 12:01 PM   #15
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The answer I see missing is "battery life?" With all those bells and whistles, I'm wondering how long even that big ol' 2100mAh battery will last.
They quote battery like as 5000 pages but this is certainly only based on the PVI spec. The impact of a touch screen is certainly not factored in. Using page turns is not very satisfactory method of setting customer expectation properly.

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