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Old 01-08-2013, 03:38 PM   #1
afv011
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Txtr Beagle crossing the pond

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US book distributor ReaderLink will be pushing German firm txtr's impossibly cheap ereader into US grocery and drug stores, launching a new cloud platform which will also support the devices. The cheap ereaders cost a mere €10 on this side of the pond, but dollar pricing has not yet been announced.

Txtr's Beagle ereader was announced back in October and has been looking for commercial partners ever since. In America that partner will be ReaderLink, a company which already provides books to thousands of grocery and drug stores across America which have hitherto been excluded from the digital revolution.
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An interesting concept.
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Old 01-08-2013, 03:48 PM   #2
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If it came to Canada, and at a similar price, it would be worth picking up just to tinker with it, if nothing else. I'd probably get it as something to give to my daughter because at that price I don't care worry about it breaking.
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Old 01-08-2013, 03:58 PM   #3
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That's the subsidised price, it would be interesting to know what the unsubsidised one is. But the concept is interesting, all the heavy lifting is done on your smartphone and the device is simply a display for your content.
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Old 01-08-2013, 04:24 PM   #4
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It sounds like an interesting device, and I'd pick it up in a heartbeat if it weren't for the fact that's tied to a smartphone. I don't have a smartphone.
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Old 01-08-2013, 04:29 PM   #5
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I don't see the point of it even at the the subsidised price. You can't load normal ebooks of any kind onto it, you have to load them via your smartphone and they are converted into a strange format (don't think it's a standard PDF though that's what the article mentions) and it's limited to 5 books.
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Old 01-08-2013, 04:37 PM   #6
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I think the market this is aimed for is the wrong one. It's going to tank (IMHO).
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Old 01-08-2013, 04:51 PM   #7
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Why would anyone who can afford an iOS/Android smartphone and a data-plan even bat an eye at this "affordable eReader?"
(unless they're only interested in getting a quick 10|15|20 bucks from the poor shlubs who don't realize you need an iOS/Android phone to actually use the device)

Last edited by DiapDealer; 01-08-2013 at 04:56 PM.
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Old 01-08-2013, 07:38 PM   #8
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I'm waiting for the reviewers to figure out how it works and pan it. "Wait, how much storage and only five books?"
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Old 01-08-2013, 09:13 PM   #9
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Good questions all.
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Old 01-08-2013, 10:55 PM   #10
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I can see the point at the subsidized price. If you don't read very quickly, maybe five books at once is enough (especially if you always have your smart phone w/ you). But if they sell it for like fifty dollars, it looks kind of ridiculous next to the Kindle. And the lowest-priced Kindle appears to reduce by $10 every year, so even more so.
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Old 01-08-2013, 11:12 PM   #11
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I don't see why anyone who already has a smartphone would want to buy this. More likely, they would either read on their mobile with an app, or buy another, more capable device (e-ink or tablet).
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Old 01-09-2013, 02:33 AM   #12
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I don't see why anyone who already has a smartphone would want to buy this. More likely, they would either read on their mobile with an app, or buy another, more capable device (e-ink or tablet).
I actually think it has a place. Smartphones are always with you, and are next to unreadable in sunlight; if you're going to read, you'll probably bring an eInk reader and, if you can get one that simply displays the content from your smartphone at a fraction of the price of a full fledged eInk reader, why not? It needs to be priced accordingly.
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Old 01-09-2013, 05:00 AM   #13
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I don't see the point of it even at the the subsidised price. You can't load normal ebooks of any kind onto it, you have to load them via your smartphone and they are converted into a strange format (don't think it's a standard PDF though that's what the article mentions) and it's limited to 5 books.
It's a great idea if it's cheap enough, this solves all those issues around lending books to friends and family, load up the beagle with 4 or 5 books and hand it to someone, no DRM issues, no copyright issues. Get the beagle back when done.
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Old 01-09-2013, 06:24 AM   #14
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5 books is not an issue. I'm rarely reading more than one at a time and never more than 2 or 3. And my library is on Dropbox so I can access books if I need to load a new one.

The drawback for me is the fact that the books are rendered into pictures so that a) there's no search and b) no changing the font size on the fly. So for that it needs to be cheap and I'm not talking about "apparently cheap but actually you're paying through your phone contract" cheap.

I don't know much about Readerlink but they aren't a phone company so I assume they're subsidizing the readers for a cut of the book sales, though possibly that means the subsidy is not as high? Need more details on pricing.
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Old 01-09-2013, 04:39 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by afv011 View Post
I actually think it has a place. Smartphones are always with you, and are next to unreadable in sunlight; if you're going to read, you'll probably bring an eInk reader and, if you can get one that simply displays the content from your smartphone at a fraction of the price of a full fledged eInk reader, why not? It needs to be priced accordingly.
I remain skeptical. One obstacle to its success is lack of brand recognition in the US.
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