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Old 03-18-2005, 06:34 PM   #1
Colin Dunstan
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Japan's cell-phone users are turning pages

It is true: in Japan you find people reading entire novels on their mobile phones. Although this is not exactly new (the trend has been around for a year), it is still noteworthy and begs the question why tech-savvy people living in the Western hemisphere haven't picked it up yet.

Your eyes probably hurt just thinking about it: Tens of thousands of Japanese cell-phone owners are poring over full-length novels on their tiny screens... In the latest versions, cell-phone novels are downloaded in short installments and run on handsets as Java-based applications. You're free to browse as though you're in a bookstore, whether you're at home, in your office or on a commuter train... people are using cell-phone books to catch up on classics they never finished reading. And people are perusing sex manuals and other books they're too embarrassed to be caught reading or buying. More common is keeping an electronic dictionary in your phone in case a need arises.

[Via Teleread and Associated Press]
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Old 03-18-2005, 09:14 PM   #2
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It could just be a cultural thing. Wondering why tech-saavy people in the West aren't all into reading eBooks on their phone is like wondering why all art-loving people in the West aren't into reading comics. Over there (Japan) "adults" read comics in public, while over here, "adults" are not supposed to read comics.

Obviously, they aren't waiting for our perrmission to find intriguing uses for their technology. Over here, we wait for someone to give us permission.
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Old 03-18-2005, 09:31 PM   #3
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Well, I'm a geek and I like to use tech, but all the same I'd be hard pressed to read a novel on my freakin' phone. I've read heaps of books on my T|E, but the screen of a phone is just too small.

(By the way, I'm a big comics fan too: best comic ever: Nausicaa of the Valley of Wind)
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Old 09-28-2007, 03:43 AM   #4
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and here we are, two-and-a-half years later, finding that
there are novels breaking big with the cell-phone readers,
which are then published in hard-copy to sell big numbers
(as in the 400,000+ range). is anyone surprised at all this?

> http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-b...0070923x4.html
> http://online.wsj.com/public/article....html?mod=blog

these novels are being written by young people who don't even consider
themselves _writers_, who just wanted to join in on the keitai community.

-bowerbird
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Old 09-28-2007, 04:34 AM   #5
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THis thread describes how to put eBooks on your phone.
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Old 09-28-2007, 10:07 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pride Of Lions View Post
It could just be a cultural thing. Wondering why tech-saavy people in the West aren't all into reading eBooks on their phone is like wondering why all art-loving people in the West aren't into reading comics. Over there (Japan) "adults" read comics in public, while over here, "adults" are not supposed to read comics.

Obviously, they aren't waiting for our perrmission to find intriguing uses for their technology. Over here, we wait for someone to give us permission.
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The average cell phone does really poorly in direct sunlight. Can you see trying to read on one of those screens in sunlight?
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Old 09-28-2007, 11:00 AM   #7
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Heheh, that's why they read all their manga (comics) on their cellphones on the commute to work; i.e., in a nice dark subway train (or train with all the shades drawn). Still not too many reading actual books on their phones, and I shoulder-surf quite often. Perhaps all this book reading is being done outside of Tokyo?
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Old 09-28-2007, 01:32 PM   #8
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The average cell phone does really poorly in direct sunlight. Can you see trying to read on one of those screens in sunlight?
Yes, they are not great, but I read on my Nokia E65 with Mobipocket while on the beach on holiday last week. The backlight had no effect, but the sunlight was reflecting of the backlight diffuser. It did mean that there were some odd colour patterns across the screen (from the light going in through one colour filter and out through another I suppose) but the black on white text was quite readable, and I read 3 books that way with no eye strain.

My wife's iLiad was much nicer to read in sunlight though, but it wasn't allowed on the beach (too sandy), only on the balcony.
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Old 09-28-2007, 01:53 PM   #9
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The average cell phone does really poorly in direct sunlight. Can you see trying to read on one of those screens in sunlight?
I discovered the same thing the last time I went to the beach and tried to read an e-mail: Whatever they're doing, they're not reading on Razrs in direct sunlight...
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Old 09-28-2007, 04:29 PM   #10
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My Sanyo phone is a bitch to see in direct sunlight.
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Old 09-28-2007, 09:10 PM   #11
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Maybe this new phone from Motorola will help.
Quote:
a second point of innovation is the electrophoretic display (EPD) supplied by E Ink and branded ClearVision by Motorola.

Last edited by |2eason; 09-30-2007 at 01:14 PM.
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Old 09-30-2007, 10:29 AM   #12
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Can you post the article here? The site wants me to register and I'd rather not.
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Old 09-30-2007, 01:18 PM   #13
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http://www.mobilegazette.com/motorol...w-07x09x16.htm <- Same phone. I've looked into it further since that last link and found it most certainly won't help. It's a crap implementation of E-ink, totally useless for reading.

Last edited by |2eason; 09-30-2007 at 01:23 PM.
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