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Old 10-10-2012, 02:41 AM   #16
nesler
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Um, because 13 bucks is the subsidized price. There's a subscription fee involved.
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Old 10-10-2012, 02:48 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by pillacd View Post
Obviously there are limitations: Bluetooth, not WiFi, 5" screen, meant to be paired with a phone. Still...
Txtr, the company, has a rather bad rep in German ebook circles already, so I'm wary. Their "txtr reader" was scheduled for release in 2009, postponed numerous times, and still has to see the light of day.

As to this device as shown: I hate artificially limited crap. No USB, or WLAN, or storage card? Fine in a bare-bones reader, I suppose, and my Laptop does have Bluetooth. A limit of 5 books? Just plain silly. Proprietary format? Nothing I'm likely to put up with, having a vested interest in standard epubs.

If they provide a PC app that allows me to prepare my existing epubs to their format, maybe, but the way I see it, this is another attempt to tie me to their ecosystem. In that case, thanks, but no thanks; I'd just get myself a Kindle if I approved of that business model.
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Old 10-10-2012, 03:02 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by petermillard View Post
I'm sure some people will moan about the inability to alter the fonts/size on the fly, but this is an eink reader to €10!
I reserve judgement until I actually see it sold for that price. I'm betting against it.
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Old 10-10-2012, 03:14 AM   #19
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Tying it to a smartphone is a terrible idea. At least, if their goal is to sell one to me.
Indeed. It doesn't make sense at all to me. Handling eBook files on your phone instead of your computer? Who came up with that idea?

Also, I don't get why they target such a low price, with such a crippled device. Make it 30$ subsidized instead, add WiFi and remove the phone and 5 books limitations. They would sell tons.

How can this scheme be a logical business plan?
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Old 10-10-2012, 03:51 AM   #20
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I actually don't mind it as an idea. Cheap, light, e-Ink and a long lasting battery. Very limited, but some aren't going to be totally put out by the limitations.

If I'm not mistaken this is a read-only device that you load the book on but then can't copy it anywhere else. It can be read totally separately from the phone only requiring the phone for the initial transfer. If that's right it sounds like an awesome way to have guilt-free ebook loaning to friends without feeling like a pirate.
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Old 10-10-2012, 06:30 AM   #21
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How can this scheme be a logical business plan?
If the Beagle can only display books from the carrier's ebookstore, of course.
Sold at typical, non-discounted, German print prices.
It will be a gold mine! (Think the carriers.)

This is the Palm Foleo of ebook readers.
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Old 10-10-2012, 07:05 AM   #22
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So what kind of subscription is it sold with anyway? Is it like an add-on you can get if you get a cell-phone contract?

I think a product like this has a lot of potential, so sad to see it locked down by all of these restrictions. I wonder what the unsubsidized price is?

But I am really not understanding why there is 4 GB if it really can only hold 5 books at once.
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Old 10-10-2012, 07:50 AM   #23
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I think I get the basis for this device. Tell me where I'm wrong ...

It contains no rendering platform; no xhmtl, no epub, no fonts, no text search, nothing but a store of images it displays one by one. It simply displays an image of each page as formatted by the parent off-board app (which acts as a server, of sorts) and stored in the books memory.

If the above is even close, it might have uses, but not any related to general reading. I certainly wouldn't have any use for it.
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Old 10-10-2012, 08:42 AM   #24
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I think I get the basis for this device. Tell me where I'm wrong ...

It contains no rendering platform; no xhmtl, no epub, no fonts, no text search, nothing but a store of images it displays one by one. It simply displays an image of each page as formatted by the parent off-board app (which acts as a server, of sorts) and stored in the books memory.

If the above is even close, it might have uses, but not any related to general reading. I certainly wouldn't have any use for it.
That appears to be the case, judging by the comments in the source report.
Nate confirmed the 5 book limit from Txtr.

The evidence supporting the bitmapped DLs is the 5 books-in-4GB limit and that ADEPT-DRM'ed ebooks can be read on it without counting as an extra authentication device. The bulkiness of the files suggests the bitmaps won't be compressed, either, so the thing is likely just feeding bitmaps from flash to the eink buffer. Or maybe just remapping the buffer to different parts of the flash memory by changing a pointer.

Hmm, those are 8-bit era techniques... straight out of the Apple II. Not even up to ATARI or Commodore levels.
The LINUX crowd should be proud: no bloat in that code!
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Old 10-10-2012, 09:10 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by rogue_librarian View Post
Txtr, the company, has a rather bad rep in German ebook circles already, so I'm wary. Their "txtr reader" was scheduled for release in 2009, postponed numerous times, and still has to see the light of day.
Well,well, very true. After the first disaster they did start to gain ground as a business but mainly in the B2B area.

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Originally Posted by rogue_librarian View Post
A limit of 5 books? Just plain silly. Proprietary format? Nothing I'm likely to put up with, having a vested interest in standard epubs.
If they provide a PC app that allows me to prepare my existing epubs to their format, maybe, but the way I see it, this is another attempt to tie me to their ecosystem. In that case, thanks, but no thanks.
Have to agree on that too.

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Rob Lister
The evidence supporting the bitmapped DLs is the 5 books-in-4GB limit and that ADEPT-DRM'ed ebooks can be read on it without counting as an extra authentication device.
Ah, thats interesting. Yes. That does complete the puzzle.
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Old 10-10-2012, 10:03 AM   #26
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I'm sure some people will moan about the inability to alter the fonts/size on the fly, but this is an eink reader to €10! TBH, I'm wondering why they bother charging at all - do they need the €10 that badly?? Could they not subsidise it that last little bit to make it free?

Still, for €10 I'm in; why not?
I'm not sure how this will work. It's supposed to be connected to a phone. If you are required to get a new contract for it, then it really costs more than €10. If a new contract is not required, then €10 would be what would keep me from getting 100 of them to break them open and make myself a big eink panel.
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Old 10-10-2012, 11:01 AM   #27
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That appears to be the case, judging by the comments in the source report.
Nate confirmed the 5 book limit from Txtr.

The evidence supporting the bitmapped DLs is the 5 books-in-4GB limit and that ADEPT-DRM'ed ebooks can be read on it without counting as an extra authentication device. The bulkiness of the files suggests the bitmaps won't be compressed, either, so the thing is likely just feeding bitmaps from flash to the eink buffer. Or maybe just remapping the buffer to different parts of the flash memory by changing a pointer.
That would also explain the five-book limit in a four-gig storage space and the proprietary helper app, if its having to rasterize and paginate it beforehand. By the same token you could take a pared-down Linux kernel and write a frontend based around a full-featured ePub and Mobi reader in less than two gigs, and have two leftover for actual books instead of a few rasterized clones.

That's how they get it to not count as a read device, BTW. They're not actually uploading the ebook, but a raster clone of it. Analog Loophole, anyone?

Quote:
Hmm, those are 8-bit era techniques... straight out of the Apple II. Not even up to ATARI or Commodore levels.
The LINUX crowd should be proud: no bloat in that code!
I'm not sure that passing off processing from one device to another is that good of an idea.
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Old 10-10-2012, 11:35 AM   #28
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By the same token you could take a pared-down Linux kernel and write a frontend based around a full-featured ePub and Mobi reader in less than two gigs, and have two leftover for actual books instead of a few rasterized clones.
Do that, add a USB port and a smart card slot (for easy sideloading) and you have an AWESOME tiny, cheap, disposable reader.

I love the idea of a $20 ereader running on user-replaceable AAAs...great very affordable and portable tech for non-techie people. This could be a HUGE development for ebooks if done properly.

Who do we have to bribe to make this happen?
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Old 10-10-2012, 11:41 AM   #29
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Who do we have to bribe to make this happen?
Amazon
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Old 10-10-2012, 11:56 AM   #30
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After reading the article on golem.de about it:
Yes. It's basically an e-ink digital photo frame with BT-connection.
No own format support than raw image data.
Rendering, transfer, etc. is completely depending on what the corresponding (android) app will support. This awful waste of internal storage is market-speech insofar sold as an advantage, that the actual computing hardware in the device can be kept at a bare minimum.
Could be a nice add on toy if someone hacks it's BT data transfer protocol allowing individual use of the frame.

Let's just say: The rediscovery of dumb terminals.
Keeping in mind, that companies still try to sell 'clouds' as something new and shiny, I just ask myself how much of old computing tech concepts will be necro-revived for mobile devices.
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