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Old 08-04-2009, 06:10 PM   #1
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WSJ-New Sony Reader and Cheaper Ebook Prices!!

TECHNOLOGYAUGUST 4, 2009, 6:01 P.M. ET.Sony to Introduce New E-Readers, Cut Pricing By GEOFFREY A. FOWLER
Sony Corp. plans to announce on Wednesday two new e-reader devices priced at $199 and $299, a person briefed on the matter said, a move to compete in the lower end of a burgeoning market increasingly dominated by e-book rival Amazon.com Inc.

Associated Press A Sony Reader Touch Edition
.
Sony will also cut the prices on best-selling e-book titles in its online store to $9.99 from $11.99, this person said, which matches the discount price offered by Barnes & Noble Co.'s Fictionwise and Amazon for users of its Kindle e-book reader, this person said.

Sony's new Readers, called the PRS-300 and PRS-600, are expected to go on sale later in August at a variety of U.S. retailers, including Best Buy and Wal-Mart Stores.

A Sony spokesman didn't immediately return calls. Some details of the new products leaked on the Web site Sony Insider last week. Sony also stopped selling its top-of-the-line PRS-700 Reader at its Sony Style online store last week.

While Amazon's latest model, the Kindle DX, features a larger 9.7-inch screen tailored for standard letter-sized business documents and textbooks, Sony's new PRS-300 model will feature a smaller, 5-inch screen. The device, which will be marketed as the "Pocket Edition," will also feature a lightweight design.

The PRS-600, which will be marketed as the "Touch Edition" will feature a 6-inch touch screen, a feature not available on Amazon's Kindle.

Sony's new devices do not have wireless capabilities. Some in the industry had been expecting Sony to launch an e-reader that featured some kind of wireless functionality, to enable it to compete with Amazon's Kindle and the forthcoming Plastic Logic reader. Both of those devices come with wireless service to download books and other content onto their devices without plugging them into a computer.
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Old 08-04-2009, 06:15 PM   #2
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Nice find. Looks like these are both coming sooner than many thought.

And here's another article on this.

Last edited by Abecedary; 08-04-2009 at 06:18 PM. Reason: added AP article
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Old 08-04-2009, 06:17 PM   #3
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Sadly, I couldn't be less impressed by most anything that makes the bestseller lists; I'd much prefer they'd lower the prices for older titles (especially the slightly less-often sold ones)..
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Old 08-04-2009, 06:24 PM   #4
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hey, sounds like we should have some confirmed details really soon ! exciting ! i can't wait to hear about the dictionary feature.

it's good they're lowering prices on their ebook store too, although i don't personally buy there i think it will make their offer much more attractive to a lot of people.

i agree with zero though, it would be nice to see more efforts made for less popular books and backlist titles. not everyone is interested in the best-seller list.
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Old 08-04-2009, 06:40 PM   #5
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Quote:
Haber said removing the light will correct some screen clarity problems it has caused.
Yes!
Quote:
As he has indicated in the past, Haber said Sony is working on a wireless model, though he wouldn't say when.
October?

NY Times also reports.

Quote:
The new Readers also cannot access magazines or newspapers, and Sony has yet to develop a version of its reading software for other devices like the iPhone. Mr. Haber from Sony said that the company was working on developing all of these features.
Very interesting news.

Quote:
Sarah Epps, an analyst at Forrester Research, said Sony had publicly indicated that the two new devices were part of a new suite of e-reading products it would introduce this year. She said it was a “reasonable assumption” that Sony would introduce another device in the fall that has wireless features.
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Old 08-04-2009, 06:53 PM   #6
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I find that end of the month is too long to wait, lol! I'd like to get my hands on that PRS-600! Sony is not kidding around.
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Old 08-04-2009, 06:56 PM   #7
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Very nice! I just saw this on Engadget and hoped over here to make sure someone had posted the news.

I'm with pretty much everyone else so far - I don't really care about the bestsellers, *BUT* I think it's a great move and a good start towards lowering all the prices.
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Old 08-04-2009, 07:04 PM   #8
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As much as I would love to get jazzed about a new Sony offering I just don't see them "beating" the Kindle or the "whenever we'll see it" Mac tablet. Being someone who has purchased everything from Sony mini-disc recorders and players in the past as well as the PRS-500 and PRS-505 - I just think they'll shoot themselves in the foot somehow like they have with most things where customers meet convenience and their draconian DRM standards. Not the brightest bunch at Sony...

Honestly, if it wasn't for the Calibre software I wouldn't have even purchased the 505.

I still have the hardest time paying even $9.99 for something that once it's created for digital download costs them virtually nothing to distribute. Age old argument for e-books I know but I still think $10 a book is gouging at the trough.

I still think they should offer the ability to pay full price for the paper book then charge me, I dunno, say $.99 to download the electronic copy? That's $1 more than they would normally get now. Heck, I might even pay $1.99 on top of the tree version - but that's about it.

How much for the e-book alone? Maybe $4.99 - considering that is dangerously close to the paperback cost already and there is no printing, binding, shipping, store-front, salesman fee. The paper version I can lend - the electronic one I can't. I'd even hesitate at that price considering e-books only will get rid of jobs, storefronts and just make publishers margins that much fatter.

Okay... Sorry, I'm (reluctantly) off my soapbox now. It's just that anyone saying "Look at us! We'll drop the price from "ridiculously and outrageously obscene" to only "comically tongue-in-cheek obscene" and expect adulation from an adoring audience - should be drowned in their own Kool-Aid. :-)
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Old 08-04-2009, 07:05 PM   #9
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The NYT article specifically says that these will be replacing both the 505 and the 700. Too bad - I'd like to see the 505 continued at a lower price point. The 300 is too stripped down, although if I were still in the market for an ebook reader, I would certainly be giving it a look-see.
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Old 08-04-2009, 07:07 PM   #10
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Owners of the PRS-505 and the PRS-700 will be able to download the Mac client and a firmware update at the time of launch, late this month.
Great if true!
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Old 08-04-2009, 07:11 PM   #11
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Great if true!
hm, intriguing !! think we can expect an update to the epub renderer ? with a little luck, dictionary support ????
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Old 08-04-2009, 07:17 PM   #12
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Did Walmart carry the previous Sony Readers? That's a lot of stores. My guess is that the 300 is aimed at the Walmart Shoppers. Online retailers have new 505s for $262 and Ebay prices for the 505 are coming down. There will be the 300 for $199, the existing 505 inventory at $250, and the 600 for $299. Something for everyone at each price point.

The real question to me is when will Sony take on the Kindle DX. Sounds like it is coming next!
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Old 08-04-2009, 07:21 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by zelda_pinwheel View Post
hm, intriguing !! think we can expect an update to the epub renderer ? with a little luck, dictionary support ????
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Old 08-04-2009, 07:25 PM   #14
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wonder what the thinking is at Sony for not at least having Wi-Fi capability, USB cables are getting so....old tech
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Old 08-04-2009, 07:32 PM   #15
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wonder what the thinking is at Sony for not at least having Wi-Fi capability, USB cables are getting so....old tech
They stated multiple times that wireless version is in the works.
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