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Old 01-17-2009, 01:15 AM   #16
pilotbob
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A Mister Fusion ...
Heh heh... Yea.. but Mr Fusion is a bit bulky for my reader. Perhaps I will settle for a small power cell at this point.

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Old 01-17-2009, 01:58 AM   #17
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There is a very complete review at Laptop Magazine. It is running Windows XP (not the tablet edition), and the bundled software includes FoxitReader, FBReader, MyScript Stylus 3.0, EverNote, ArtRage 2, and ArcSoft Webcam Companion.
FBReader and ArtRage... I covet one. (And I have no chance of buying anything of the sort this year.) But I wonder what the battery life is like? It wasn't in this review-- anyone have a reference (or even a good guess)?
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Old 01-17-2009, 11:04 AM   #18
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FBReader and ArtRage... I covet one. (And I have no chance of buying anything of the sort this year.) But I wonder what the battery life is like? It wasn't in this review-- anyone have a reference (or even a good guess)?
I would guess no more than 4 hours.

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Old 01-17-2009, 11:06 AM   #19
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But I wonder what the battery life is like?
From page 4 of laptop mag review:
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Compared with its predecessor, the 2go Convertible lasted an hour longer, enduring for 4 hours and 55 minutes on the LAPTOP Battery Test (continuous Web surfing over Wi-Fi).
This is a 6-cell battery, and it should be 6+ hrs when reading ebooks with wifi of.
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Old 01-17-2009, 11:15 AM   #20
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From page 4 of laptop mag review: This is a 6-cell battery, and it should be 6+ hrs when reading ebooks with wifi of.
That's actually pretty nice. I am really liking this one. It cost a bit more, but I think it is more sturdy too since designed for students.

Hard to justify paying $800+ for a DR1000 with devices like this available... especially if not being used for hard core long session reading and more for technical/reference reading.

However, I see that the Sony Viao P is for sale for £300 on Amazon UK which is alot cheaper than we were hearing as CES. http://www.engadget.com/2009/01/17/s...azons-uk-site/

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Old 02-02-2009, 12:08 PM   #21
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There's another review of the CTL 2Go Convertible here:
http://www.liliputing.com/2009/02/ct...et-review.html

$500 for a Windows XP netbook that converts to a touchscreen tablet is a pretty good deal. 1024 x 600 touchscreen, long lasting 6 cell battery, wifi, webcam, etc, all cool.

A very similiar competing product will be the Asus EeePC T91, widely expected to go on sale in March, probably for about the same price. The T91 will be more stylish looking, weigh less (closer to 2 lbs than 3 lbs) and have a larger keyboard (not an issue for ebook reading, but handy). However, it will not be as rugged as the 2Go Convertible (which is designed to be handled by children) and will lack the removable handle and accelerometer for instant switching from landscape to portrait. (The T91 will use a software program to convert from landscape to portrait.)

I suspect that the T91 will be much more popular, because of the lighter weight, bigger keyboard and popular brand. But the bigger keyboard doesn't mean much when you're reading eBooks, and I like the idea of something more rugged (and the accelerometer) so I'll probably get the CTL 2Go instead, as soon as the Convertible shows up at Amazon. (Or if I lose patience, I might buy direct from CTL, since it's already available.)
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Old 02-03-2009, 04:53 PM   #22
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I love these devices!!

The ONLY issue I have with the convertible Netbooks is the lack of a transreflective screen for outdoor use. Still, given the $400ish price range these Netbooks represent a far better/practical option over more pricey, less functional eink based readers. Unless your needs require outdoor use then until a good either transreflective or true reflective LCD displays become an option for netbook devices. If that does happen it really puts the screws to eink devices, especially given their current price points and locking them into a particular online book store...

I do expect eventually there will be a merging of eink and the convertible netbook class devices but that's still a few years out I imagine.
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Old 02-03-2009, 10:06 PM   #23
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Still, given the $400ish price range these Netbooks represent a far better/practical option over more pricey, less functional eink based readers.
Except that the convertables are $500-700, 2x-3x as heavy, and don't last nearly as long.

All depends on your needs. And for access to text, the e-ink readers are better.
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Old 02-04-2009, 12:18 AM   #24
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Except that the convertables are $500-700, 2x-3x as heavy, and don't last nearly as long.
The Eink devices brecklundin was referring to are the iRex DR1000S and (to a lesser extent) the iLiad. The new convertibles are $400-500 vs $859 for the DR1000S, and the current battery life of the two is similar. I agree that the large weight disparity and LCD vs EInk provide somewhat of an apples to oranges comparison. However, the DR1000S's customer base is largely a subset of the potential customers for a "convertible netbook". Also, tablets without keyboards appear to be the next phase of the evolution of netbooks. The market for these is certainly smaller, but the marginal cost of designing a slate once you have a convertible may not be large (just as the convertible was a natural extension of netbooks and nettops).

I think iRex made a serious mistake in not doubling the size of the DR1000S battery. It has such a tiny battery, that a small convertible (with a big and heavy battery) can compete well in time between recharges. There will be other EInk devices with ~10" screens this year, and perhaps they will provide a better balance of price and features.
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Old 02-06-2009, 02:14 AM   #25
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Except that the convertables are $500-700, 2x-3x as heavy, and don't last nearly as long.

All depends on your needs. And for access to text, the e-ink readers are better.
I actually was comparing to all eink devices. Say you spend $300-$400 for a basic reader only device. You can buy a fully function netbook that will pretty much run any reader software you need, not whatever comes with the reader device. One does not really give up too much either in terms of content, other than the inability to buy from Amazon, you can buy DRM'd or none DRM'd books anywhere else. Limited only by the reader software available for the OS your netbook is running.

Additionally you can do email, word processing, web browsing, watch a video of some sort and for one of these newer convertible netbooks you are looking at a MAXIMUM price difference over a basic ereader device of around $300. But that difference buys a fully functional computer in only a slightly larger form factor.

And when compared to the devices wellcraft mentions the netbook becomes a much more competitive device. Though still no Wacom screens mentioned yet...{sniff-sniff}

You do make a valid point about weight differential. But ereading devices are a huge trade-off in terms of missing features for the price. And the weight differential is probably not as great as you might first think. Most folks don't exactly carry their reader around w/o a cover of some sort nor in their shirt/pants pocket. So they are carrying it in a bag of some sort as well as in a protective cover. If a 1-2lb difference matters to you...I suggest less Cheetos and more 12oz curls. And remember these netbooks do not need a special protective case as they, well, fold up. Still, you are right in pointing out there are times when the lighter weight device is really nice. It is one of the pros for my N800 over my Clie NX73v. Also, when the plastic/flexible eink screens hit the streets later this year the difference might be a bit more but, really not much.

And as I mentioned the ONLY real problem I have with a convertible netbook is the complete inability to read outside in the sun. In the shade, sure but that ability will vary by brand for sure. And the glossy displays will be all but useless outside. And I see no company that has offered a transreflective screen. Probably since they are far more expensive simply due to economy of scale in terms of sales. Again an advantage for eink readers as outside is the only place they really, ummm for forgive this pun...outshine shine a convertible netbook for my needs/wants.

But when I can buy a device that gives me not only the ability to read my ebooks, but also a large percentage of the functionality I need when mobile and want to go light the choice is an easy one for me...and I suspect many others.

Last a 9"-10" full color LED LCD display is a HUGE plus for the netbook...especially for a student who wants to use it to take notes which can later be transferred to their more powerful laptop/desktop...along with the potential to provide full color textbooks.

Battery life is not that much of an issue if you need the added computing power. So an extra battery adds 1lb to the junk you are already carrying...it also adds another 4-6hrs of use. But again for just reading, the eink battery life devices is generally better unless one is using the touch screen and/or wireless of some sort or, as in the case of the Kindle, using an SD card (but that has to be a poorly written bit of software and can be fixed).

This is not a knock against eink devices but rather an expression that these devices are not at a reasonable price point given the whole DRM, company-store, one-trick-pony nature of devices from the two major players. I think the iRex is a very nice device yet is still about $300 over priced. And the readers from Amazon and Sony are about 50% over priced. Looking forward to the larger format Astek devices in late Q3 or early Q4 of this year. But they are facing stiff competition from a netbook for my pennies.

In spite of the attraction of the netbooks due out this year, I will likely not take that jump either. At least not until I see their durability from the early adopters. But, given Asus has a big advantage over the competition I might be tempted at a $400 9"-10" convertible netbook with a standard HDD not an SSD drive. SSD drives are still way to spendy to make them worth while for most of us...a few more years and maybe they will be, unless a better option comes along. Do note the price of a netbook drops significantly by going with a standard HDD over an SSD. And for some of them using the earlier far less power efficient SSD's the battery life is not significantly better.

No matter what this will really be an interesting year as we might see a merging of the two devices moving close by the end of the year.
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Old 04-26-2009, 05:45 AM   #26
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I just got a Classmate Gen 3

Well, my new (rebranded) Classmate 9" tablet is sitting on the desk. After playing around with the wireless for awhile I started installing reader software (msReader basically was all that not on the system) - and viewed books in rotated tablet mode - very nice! All for 500 euros (including English version of XP Home!).

First, I'll admit that, living in Greece, the strength of the sunlight precludes anything except shade-reading. Also, I do 80% of my ebook reading indoors where there is electricity and a bit more weight doesn't matter. Most of this is in bed before sleeping - so a dimmed backlight is actually helpful and considerate of my husband. Portability issues are answered by my much-used .mp3 player and audiobooks - mostly when taking daily walks.

I haven't tested the battery capacity of the Classmate yet, but I will. I work in higher-education and the tablet appears to also be perfect for moodle (CMS) access, bringing presentations to class to display with a projector, simple note-taking (maybe?), and annotations of texts and papers. I have to test it out for awhile. If anyone is interested tell me and I'll post summary results.

I expect the Classmate will mostly replace my 7" netbook for ebook reading. However, I'll keep the Asus Eee around as I have a large battery installed + it was much less expensive and is great as a traveling companion.


I'd really like to buy an eReader device also - but I am having difficulty with the cost-value over my existing netbook solutions. I'll probably wait to see what the new crop of readers offer in the coming months.
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Old 04-26-2009, 06:14 AM   #27
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I'd really like to buy an eReader device also - but I am having difficulty with the cost-value over my existing netbook solutions. I'll probably wait to see what the new crop of readers offer in the coming months.
You can install eReader on your netbook if you wish to read books in that format - download the Windows version from http://www.ereader.com
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Old 04-26-2009, 06:22 AM   #28
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@HarryT
Actually I was thinking generic (Sony, Hanlin, ) ereader device rather than the format - but I am also interested in the link you provided - so thanks!
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