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Old 09-20-2007, 01:33 PM   #1
WilliamG
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Are the Reader's days numbered?

At the risk of sounding like the bearer of doom, I make this thread.

Bear in mind, first, that I love my Reader, and my wife loves hers.

That said, with the even greater rumblings of a near-release Amazon reader, and the complete lack of a user-base for the current PRS-500, does anyone think the reader (Sony's) is going away?

I truly feel like my wife and I are the only people in the world who own a Reader. I've never, ever, ever met anyone else (and I travel a lot by plane) who owns one.

The Reader software is pretty crappy. We have all these buttons and Sony refuse to support the darn thing! Hello Sony! I'd like my 1 through 0 buttons to do more than select my book and send me various percentages of the way through my books! How about *gasp* being able to press 264 to get to page 264!?

Add to this the absolutely atrocious Connect store that Sony seem almost adamant on not doing anything about. Combines these thing, and it feels like the Reader is just dying a really, really slow death.

Then again, there's this rumored PRS-505, so who really knows?

I just feel it. I feel the Reader disappearing into oblivion, despite liking the darn thing so much.
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Old 09-20-2007, 01:48 PM   #2
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Of course the PRS-500's days are numbered! IIUC, it has less than 30 days of life! (Isn't the PRS-505 slated to be released Oct. 15? Somebody help me out here, I'm having a 'Senior Moment'.)

So wave bye-bye to the PRS-500 as it slowly sinks beneath the waves of the Sea of Obsolescence. Remember it fondly and then step to the counter and buy yourself a PRS-505!!!

What I'd like to see is someone do a port of FBReader or Mobipocket over to the PRS-500. I'm pretty sure it could be done - at least the latter - as they've done it for the iLiad - and Bookeen has a working Mobi reader for the Cybook Gen3, although I *THINK* theirs is based upon the Boo Reader software. Does a decent job of it too. I've been reading all my new Baen Webscription ebooks in Mobi PRC format on it.

Derek

Quote:
Originally Posted by WilliamG View Post
At the risk of sounding like the bearer of doom, I make this thread.

Bear in mind, first, that I love my Reader, and my wife loves hers.

That said, with the even greater rumblings of a near-release Amazon reader, and the complete lack of a user-base for the current PRS-500, does anyone think the reader (Sony's) is going away?

I truly feel like my wife and I are the only people in the world who own a Reader. I've never, ever, ever met anyone else (and I travel a lot by plane) who owns one.

The Reader software is pretty crappy. We have all these buttons and Sony refuse to support the darn thing! Hello Sony! I'd like my 1 through 0 buttons to do more than select my book and send me various percentages of the way through my books! How about *gasp* being able to press 264 to get to page 264!?

Add to this the absolutely atrocious Connect store that Sony seem almost adamant on not doing anything about. Combines these thing, and it feels like the Reader is just dying a really, really slow death.

Then again, there's this rumored PRS-505, so who really knows?

I just feel it. I feel the Reader disappearing into oblivion, despite liking the darn thing so much.
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Old 09-20-2007, 01:50 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WilliamG View Post
That said, with the even greater rumblings of a near-release Amazon reader, and the complete lack of a user-base for the current PRS-500, does anyone think the reader (Sony's) is going away?
I certainly don't. I'm not sure what you mean by a lack of user-base, considering the number of Sony owners that keep popping in around here. And I don't really think Sony's failure to add new features to an existing product is a sign of abandonment. Toyota didn't drop by to upgrade the engine on my 4Runner, either, and they're still around.

If Sony is planning to abandon the Reader, they're certainly hiding it well from Borders. Dropping the thing right after extending the agreement with Borders could have some major legal/contractual implications. It would be foolish, to say the least. Maybe I'm missing something, but I just don't see any cause for concern.
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Old 09-20-2007, 01:51 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by delphidb96 View Post
Of course the PRS-500's days are numbered! IIUC, it has less than 30 days of life! (Isn't the PRS-505 slated to be released Oct. 15? Somebody help me out here, I'm having a 'Senior Moment'.)
The rumored day for the Amazon Kindle is October 15th. The Sony PRS-505 is rumored for October (no day specified) based on the ABT website that was pulled.
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Old 09-20-2007, 01:53 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by jasonkchapman View Post
Toyota didn't drop by to upgrade the engine on my 4Runner, either, and they're still around.
If that isn't a faulty analogy, I don't know what is!
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Old 09-20-2007, 01:53 PM   #6
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As long as it supports open formats, and as long as there are conversion tools, it will be a useful device - irrespective of future sales.

The only real threat that I see in the near future is that Mobipocket takes over entirely, but I think that we are still a long way away from that.
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Old 09-20-2007, 01:58 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WilliamG View Post
The Reader software is pretty crappy. We have all these buttons and Sony refuse to support the darn thing! Hello Sony! I'd like my 1 through 0 buttons to do more than select my book and send me various percentages of the way through my books! How about *gasp* being able to press 264 to get to page 264!?
Have you looked at the Page Direct Control hack? It does exactly that!
Check the Hack Builder thread...
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Old 09-20-2007, 01:59 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdhuang View Post
Have you looked at the Page Direct Control hack? It does exactly that!
Check the Hack Builder thread...
I don't think hacking is the same as mainstream support of a device, but I will check that out since I'm of that mentality (I like to tinker!).
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Old 09-20-2007, 02:07 PM   #9
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Yeah, hacking is just the futile activity of the user base which the PRS-500 completely lacks.
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Old 09-20-2007, 02:14 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NatCh View Post
Yeah, hacking is just the futile activity of the user base which the PRS-500 completely lacks.
Hey now, be nice! I do feel like the Reader doesn't have a real mainstream user-base. I'm entitled to my opinion! Has Sony released any sales numbers?
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Old 09-20-2007, 02:31 PM   #11
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I didn't mean to be not nice, WilliamG (I used a smilie and everything!), just pointing out that my own opinion is that we're developing a respectable user base here.

Of course you're entitled to your opinion, I'd never suggest otherwise. If your opinion is that the Reader lacks a mainstream user base, I'd probably agree with that, at least conditionally. I thought you were trying to say that it had a complete lack of a user-base, but I see now that you must have simply misspoken.

Please, I meant no offense, and regret if I have given it unintentionally.
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Old 09-20-2007, 02:34 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NatCh View Post
I didn't mean to be not nice, WilliamG (I used a smilie and everything!), just pointing out that my own opinion is that we're developing a respectable user base here.

Of course you're entitled to your opinion, I'd never suggest otherwise. If your opinion is that the Reader lacks a mainstream user base, I'd probably agree with that, at least conditionally. I thought you were trying to say that it had a complete lack of a user-base, but I see now that you must have simply misspoken.

Please, I meant no offense, and regret if I have given it unintentionally.
Hehe. No really, I knew. Funny how the Internets work, sometimes.

Time will tell more, of course. I just want the Reader to live, live, LIVE!
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Old 09-20-2007, 02:49 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by delphidb96 View Post
What I'd like to see is someone do a port of FBReader or Mobipocket over to the PRS-500. I'm pretty sure it could be done - at least the latter - as they've done it for the iLiad - and Bookeen has a working Mobi reader for the Cybook Gen3, although I *THINK* theirs is based upon the Boo Reader software.
Sadly, neither would be straightforward.

FBReader is "icon" driven and needs a mouse or a touch sensitive screen to drive it. You'd need to completely re-design the user interface for a machine like the Reader which doesn't have a touch screen.

The iLiad Mobipocket Reader would be even harder, because it's Java-based, and the Reader doesn't have a JVM.

Sorry to be the bearer of bad tidings .
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Old 09-20-2007, 02:53 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
Sadly, neither would be straightforward.

FBReader is "icon" driven and needs a mouse or a touch sensitive screen to drive it. You'd need to completely re-design the user interface for a machine like the Reader which doesn't have a touch screen.

The iLiad Mobipocket Reader would be even harder, because it's Java-based, and the Reader doesn't have a JVM.

Sorry to be the bearer of bad tidings .
Unless FBReader's internals are really badly designed porting it to use a keyevent based interface should be trivial. And there's no reason a JVM can't be installed on the reader (other than that the reader's CPU is probably to slow to handle a GUI written in an interpreted language)

Personally I prefer to convert content and read it ;-)
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Old 09-20-2007, 02:56 PM   #15
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I do feel like the Reader doesn't have a real mainstream user-base.
Put that way, e-books in general (hardware, content, software, et al.) don't really have a mainstream user base. Do they? I mean, we're all still someone's "weird gadget-freak buddy" at this point.

Or is that just me?
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