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Old 01-05-2010, 09:11 PM   #1
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Hands On with Spring Design Alex

From Engadget

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Spring Design was poised to take the official wraps off of its dual-screen, Android-based ereader this Thursday, but we were able to catch an up close and personal glance at the device today here at CES Unveiled. Highlighted over at the Marvell booth (understandable given the choice of processor), the reader was intensely thin and remarkably snappy. We had some gripes with the speed of the Nook, but every action we took on the Alex was relatively lag free. We even downloaded a book and watched it open up immediately, and the touchscreen response was also satisfactory. Spring Design also opted to expose the microSD card slot on the rear; you simple mash your card into the slot and listen for the click, and mash it once more to eject it. You better hope nothing pushes it by mistake, but hey, at least you're not stuck removing some rear cover just to swap cards. We've gotta say -- we're digging this thing based on our brief time with it, and we'd invite you to have a peek at the gallery below till our demo video is prepped.
So they will have a video later and there is a gallery

http://www.engadget.com/photos/sprin...alex-hands-on/

Last edited by Nate the great; 01-06-2010 at 12:38 AM.
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Old 01-05-2010, 09:38 PM   #2
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I'm anxious to see how the Alex Reader turns out. From the video that's on YouTube it looks pretty freakin' sweet.

I just wonder how much it's going to cost and how the internet service will work. With all that it can do I doubt internet will be free--it'd be nice though.
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Old 01-05-2010, 09:41 PM   #3
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meh..

Those page turn button sure look fun!

Not impressed. Even if the hardware inside is fast, the form factor for this thing is horrendous. The exposed SD slot is another disaster waiting to happen. Does this thing want to be a e-book reader or a tablet?
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Old 01-05-2010, 09:42 PM   #4
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I sure hope the power button activates an "are you sure" query window, cause I can see alot of issues coming from it's position.
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Old 01-06-2010, 12:02 AM   #5
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I would just observe the same comment I did when the Alex and the nook were announced. At least with the Alex the LCD panel is large enough to be of some use. The LCD panel on the nook is of absolutely no use at all...it only serves up book thumbnails so you can buy more books. I am sure there have to be a couple other functions but there is only so much can be done with a 3/4" tall LCD strip...
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Old 01-06-2010, 12:26 AM   #6
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Ah. This would explain why I couldn't even get near that table.
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Old 01-06-2010, 12:28 AM   #7
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hahahaha...perfect!!
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Old 01-06-2010, 01:03 AM   #8
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It's so far my favorite e-ink based device, but I wish it had nav buttons higher on the device. From the looks of it, it might be a little top-heavy in the hand if situated for comfortable book reading. Very oriented on the LCD, which isn't bad but it simply looks like it would be a little awkward in the hand. Also looks like it's a dedicated two hander (don't read that the wrong way ).
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Old 01-06-2010, 01:21 AM   #9
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LDBoblo:


I think the one hand v. two hand thing is going to depend on balance and there the center of gravity is on the device. If the thing is bottom heavy with all the weight centered behind the LCD then, yup, awkward for sure but if they were able to distribute the weight using the guts inclusing the battery then one might not notice any difference at all. I think this is one of those, only time and handling the reader will tell for certain.
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Old 01-06-2010, 03:33 AM   #10
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I asked them for information on this device a few weeks ago, while I was debating on this model vs the nook. They never got back to me and the nook looked like it would be a good first reader for a gadget freak like me so I ordered it. I'd have to use it but I don't think the page turn buttons would work for me; I could be wrong, though. It looks like a very cool ereader with a more workable LCD screen. It also looks awkwardly sized, though I like the thinness and the screens. It gives the impression that you'd need one of those restaurant bill portfolios to house it (OK, that was kind of mean...)
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Old 01-06-2010, 05:23 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brecklundin View Post
LDBoblo:


I think the one hand v. two hand thing is going to depend on balance and there the center of gravity is on the device. If the thing is bottom heavy with all the weight centered behind the LCD then, yup, awkward for sure but if they were able to distribute the weight using the guts inclusing the battery then one might not notice any difference at all. I think this is one of those, only time and handling the reader will tell for certain.
What I meant by two-handed was that the forward-back buttons are not on the same side. To use the page-back button, you need to use your left hand. This is quite unlike many devices which give both forward and backwards navigation on one side.
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Old 01-06-2010, 07:14 AM   #12
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It is a fugugly thing, but I could sure get into that speedy interface. And I agree with someone earlier that said the LCD screen is actually large enough on it to be of some use. On the Nook the color screen is really just an interface to buy books from B&N.......
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Old 01-06-2010, 07:22 AM   #13
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It is a fugugly thing, but I could sure get into that speedy interface. And I agree with someone earlier that said the LCD screen is actually large enough on it to be of some use. On the Nook the color screen is really just an interface to buy books from B&N.......
It is ugly. I don't know why because it looks like the Nook which is not ugly. Maybe it's the color and button placements.
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Old 01-06-2010, 07:49 AM   #14
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What I meant by two-handed was that the forward-back buttons are not on the same side. To use the page-back button, you need to use your left hand. This is quite unlike many devices which give both forward and backwards navigation on one side.
oh, sure, I see what you mean now. I never even noticed the button part, perhaps it's time to start using my good eye!!

Weird that they would design a device that would need both hands. I almost like the thing but, really, it seems just as if the design doesn't really mesh with the function. However I am sure interested to see more of what it can do and reviews of users. I did get a kick out of the guy looking at it in the booth. His comments about not having a clue what button does what was funny...and I somehow relate with the feeling. Maybe many of use don't know why we like it but at the same time feel put off by it is it's an abomination and does not belong in this world? hehehehe...it's just wrong looking because it does not look quite right. Or in the words of Hank Hill "...that boy just ain't right..."
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Old 01-06-2010, 08:53 AM   #15
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