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Old 10-27-2013, 07:33 AM   #31
vivaldirules
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My PRS-505 is still working well after 5-1/2 years although the battery requires frequent recharges lately and the screen contrast has diminished. Still, it remains a nice ebook reader. I suppose my next one will be a Kindle after all unless I decide to just use my iPad which works okay enough. Poor Sony. They seem to be rather incompetent business people.
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Old 10-27-2013, 08:15 AM   #32
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My PRS-505 is still working well after 5-1/2 years although the battery requires frequent recharges lately and the screen contrast has diminished. Still, it remains a nice ebook reader. I suppose my next one will be a Kindle after all unless I decide to just use my iPad which works okay enough. Poor Sony. They seem to be rather incompetent business people.
I started with a 505 as well, back in Jan 08 and liked it fine. In fact, had I not dropped it while walking into the gym one day, I'd still be using it.
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Old 10-27-2013, 08:58 AM   #33
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Gee willickers .... the US isn't the beginning and end of ebook sellers nor ebook stores!!

Haven't got a clue what Sony's reasons are re the US, but hey didn't they offer the T3 into Germany first so that ought to tell us where they think their market/s are, eh.
Economics matter: the US is still about 50% of the market for eink readers so that even single-digit share there is more sales than a dominant share in many markets.
Many small players can survive off their sales in the smaller markets precisely because they are small companies with relatively low overheads. Sony is a big company with high overhead so they need higher volume to breakeven than smaller players. Thus the concern that Sony's total sales without the US might not be enough to keep them in business.
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Old 10-27-2013, 10:05 AM   #34
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First the came for the Sonys, and I didn't care because I owned a Kindle.
Then they came for the Nooks, and I didn't care because I owned a Kindle.
Then they came for the Kobos, and I didn't care because I owned a Kindle.
Then they came for the Kindles, and I didn't care because there's always audiobooks

All this is fine, but what ebook reader did you own?




Don
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Old 10-27-2013, 10:18 AM   #35
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All this is fine, but what ebook reader did you own?

Don
I've only owned Kindles. My first one was a Kindle 3 and my second one a Kindle 4. Still have both; the K4 is my primary and K3 is a backup/loaner. The first ereader I ever used was a borrowed Sony 300.

If eink type ereaders go the way of the dinosaur, I'll seamlessly switch to audiobooks.
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Old 10-27-2013, 10:39 AM   #36
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My X50s are still the best devices I've seen, and I've tried/dabbled in offerings from the four majors. They're not perfect, but they're closer than anything else, especially in terms of playing well with Calibre and searching within the device and also in overall sleekness and feel.

I bought a Kobo Glo when I got a coupon resulting in a $73 savings, mostly to see if the front light was all that. It really isn't for me, but it's nice, as are the adjustable fonts. But the Glo is also infuriating in terms of organization and searching as well as the wasted space on the screen.

I'd like to have stayed with Sony and I've considered picking up a refurbed T2 on eBay as backup, but I know I won't like it as much as the 950 or 350 and I'm already overdeviced. Knock wood, my 950 and two 350s still have a lot of life in them and when they're dead, I'll have to see what's around.
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Old 10-27-2013, 10:41 AM   #37
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You should keep in mind that the market for Eink Readers is really small, compared to other portable electronic devices. Just have a look at a consumer electronics center of your choice with your own eyes.

It would be sad if we'd only have companies with integrated stores and their own Big Data analysis like Kobo and Amazon left on this market. We would have dedicated Eink Readers then, but for a high price, in my personal opinion.

Maybe we'll see some new manufacturers soon, but this is not a sign of the "ebook revolution" people talked about a year ago. It's rather a sign of it's dissolution.
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Old 10-27-2013, 12:25 PM   #38
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You should keep in mind that the market for Eink Readers is really small, compared to other portable electronic devices. Just have a look at a consumer electronics center of your choice with your own eyes.

It would be sad if we'd only have companies with integrated stores and their own Big Data analysis like Kobo and Amazon left on this market. We would have dedicated Eink Readers then, but for a high price, in my personal opinion.

Maybe we'll see some new manufacturers soon, but this is not a sign of the "ebook revolution" people talked about a year ago. It's rather a sign of it's dissolution.
So far, the small specialist vendors like Onyx and Bookeen seem to be surviving.
If we go by the numbers quoted for the new Onyx HD reader (1000 units at US$149, wholesale) the barriers to entry aren't terribly high.

The problem is the big electronics companies aren't structured like the small specialists. The last time I saw credible numbers, circa 2011, Sony was selling about a million units a year and losing money, whereas the smaller outfits like Pocketbook were making money at 100,000 units. (I remember a BeBook quote that they needed 25000 units a year to break even.)

In effect, Sony needs to sell over ten times more readers than the small vendors just to break even. Being a "tweener" probably doesn't help Sony's ebook operation much either; their ebookstore is likely a net drain on the bottom line compared to Kobo's or the specialists, who don't sell ebooks at deep discount. (29 pence, was it?) Sony has neither the deep content revenues of the walled gardens nor the lean cost structures of the hardware-only specialists and they are paying the price for it.

Having a knack for zig-ing when the market is zag-ing only compounds their fundamental problems, as reflected by their public statements on front lighting.

They really need to refocus on a hardware-only ereader business and look at where the core of the market is moving. When a small player like Onyx can deliver a product like the T68 and Sony's counter is a glued-on cover plate, there clearly is something amiss in their market analysis.
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Old 10-27-2013, 01:12 PM   #39
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Oh well, that's too bad. But my T1 is doing just fine, and should last for several more years. By then I'll look to see what's on the market as far as eink goes. But as it stands now, I don't use it all that often I'd rather use my Nexus 7 when I'm here at home or read at my pc.
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Old 10-27-2013, 01:17 PM   #40
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They really need to refocus on a hardware-only ereader business and look at where the core of the market is moving. When a small player like Onyx can deliver a product like the T68 and Sony's counter is a glued-on cover plate, there clearly is something amiss in their market analysis.
The problem is that when Amazon are selling the Kindle essentially at cost price, it's extremely difficult for a company like Sony to compete. Amazon make their profit from content sales, but Sony really don't have the ability to do this.
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Old 10-27-2013, 01:18 PM   #41
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I agree. You can't compare an Eink Reader with an MP3 player or a mobile phone, it's rather something like a dictaphone. The market seems to be really small. In 2012, there was a need for cheap handheld deveices and Eink Readers filled that gap. But this gap isn't there anymore, people buy a mobile phone or an Android handheld now if they need a new cheap toy.

Sony would need to raise the prices for their deveices, but this is not possible at the moment since other manufacturers with gated shopping environment charge only 40 or 50 Euros for their entry-level deveices (Kobo Mini KBUP, Amazon Kindle AZW3) and Sony would sell even less then.

Amazon is actually making financial losses with their system, but they want to dominate the market of digital distribution, that's the reason why they are doing this. Sony on the other hand is obviously not that much interested in digital distribution at the moment (at least with digital publications), they just focused on building good and longlasting hardware and cooperations with public libraries and universities. Maybe this strategy was a bit too much oldschool, at least for the US-american market.
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Old 10-27-2013, 01:29 PM   #42
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On the plus side, when I finally get around to selling my 950, it will be a collector's item.
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Old 10-27-2013, 01:35 PM   #43
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I was very happy with my Sony 505 and have been happy with 900. That device though is still the old e-ink screen and it has started to lose contrast. That and the battery life has declined. So I was in the market for a device with an improved screen that could be read in low light, like the Kindle Paperwhite. Given my good experience with Sony devices my first thought was to if a comparable device was available, and that is when I discovered that they seem to have abandoned the US market.

The thing is both Amazon and Barnes & Noble came into the ebook reader business from the business of selling books. Sony entered from the electronics business and compared to their overall electronics business ebook readers were never going to be but a minor part of that. So at least Amazon can sell readers at a low cost and make it up from selling ebooks, especially with the Amazon readers being tied the Amazon format. Sony was never a good source for ebooks.
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Old 10-27-2013, 02:42 PM   #44
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What does this mean for the Sony 13" Slate? You guys think it effects the commercial release?
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Old 10-27-2013, 02:58 PM   #45
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We don't know that there's going to BE a commercial release. What's been demonstrated is a prototype, and apparently there's a pilot study going on in Japan, but it's far from certain that it will ever be released as a commercial product.
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