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Old 04-23-2010, 04:04 PM   #1
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How frequent are updates

I've had my PRS-900 for about 2 months now and I'm curious to find out from people that have had their Sony's for a length of time how often do they come out with updates, or do they at all. I realize the 900 is still pretty new so it may be time for an update yet, but can we expect one? Will it add functionality or just fix/tweak what is already there?

This is prompted from the recent nook update that added a web browser, a couple of games, and some other functionality. Not that I necessarily want any of those (a suduko game would be cool though) but there are some other updates/changes to functionality I'd love to see.

I've been quite pleased with my reader so far and wouldn't trade it for a different reader based on lack of updates but it will certainly have an effect on the next reader I buy, or recommendations I give to others.

thanks
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Old 04-23-2010, 04:25 PM   #2
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Why would the post an update? They would rather sell another device.
(Sorry, just being sarcastic).

Let's face it, they came up with an update for the 505 approx. 1-2 years after introduction to the market. All it brought was epub support as far as I know.

The only things that improved the 505s functionality were "homebrews" like PRS+ (browse folders and such).

I'm still waiting for parts of PRS+ being ported to the 600. So far, there is the "russification" of the PRS series (300/600/900) which brings russian fonts, clock display, screenshot capability.

On the other side, the Sony FW was stable right from when I bought my devices. So Sony takes the approach to finish a product and then place it on the market rather than putting it on the market and the final functionalities are only on paper and may never come (or come once you bought another reader).

So I think Sony probably won't bring out a FW update for either the 300/600/900, but well, the readers work pretty good and they do what they advertise.
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Old 04-23-2010, 04:49 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Mike_73 View Post
So I think Sony probably won't bring out a FW update for either the 300/600/900, but well, the readers work pretty good and they do what they advertise.
I'm sorry but i can't agree. Sony Readers do NOT what they advertise. At least not all of what they advertise. Have you ever tried to put about 13.000 books on your SD card and put that card into your Sony Reader ? Try it and you see what i mean. Then go and compare to Sonys ad.

Sonys german page said for the 600 it holds 13.000 on sd card. Unfortunately you can't access even one of them as it takes the software days to scan them all. I've checked this with Sony support and they told me not to use any sd card but copy all my books onto the device. I won't be able to read them all.

They also said in their ad you can read in direct sunlight with no problems. Seems to be they haven't tried this themself.

They have good devices but the FW could definitely be improved (e.g. noscan option for sd cards).
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Old 04-23-2010, 05:18 PM   #4
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I agree that some options in the UI could be better. Well, I've used SD-cards before and never had a problem. But I didn't have 13.000 books on it either. And I guess I never will. I think that this number is a more comparable to the statements on mp3 players. They take an average, check what size SD-Card the reader can handle and just divide the SD-Card space by the average book size. So I think this statement is more of a calculation example.

Well, if you have 13.000 books to store, then I agree that they don't keep their promise.
I've used memory cards to some kind of separate pdfs from other formats and such and was a little annoyed that the reader now scans twice (it probably does that anyways, but with having files in different locations it became obvious). Additionally, accessing files on SD-Cards is slower than the readers internal memory. So I just went and put my files right on the reader.

Reading in direct sunlight is no issue on both of my readers. Check the forums for screen fading. There are others who encounter that problem and it seems it's not only a Sony problem. As stated, my Sonys don't fade in sunlight.

Ok, so these are probably shortcomings to their advertisising. But really, despite that, the readers do what they're supposed to do, don't they?

And the problems above are not Sonys problems. I bet that if you take another brand reader with card slot, it has to scan the card too, and then it has to update its internal database. So other brands won't be better in that case either. And as said, screen fading can happen on other readers as well.

It's not that I think I should defend Sony. I'm not affiliated to them (allthough getting some more income by doing so would be nice ). But I think that they do a pretty good job.
If you look at other readers, there are some that are just not quite finished when they hit the market from a FW point of view.

As for the other stuff like the noscan and such, better wait for a hack. I think that is more likely than a FW update.
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Old 04-23-2010, 05:33 PM   #5
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Mike, I have to agree with you in that they certainly do what they are advertised to do and I have no complaint. I think my problem is that this is my first reader so I did not know what to expect and now that I've been using it I find that there are other features I'd find desirable or that would add to the experience or that would just make things easier.

With that being said, I don't know that there is another reader out there that does do what I'd like, so I guess, baring an update from Sony, these are just things I'll have to keep in mind when I go looking for my next reader.
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Old 04-23-2010, 05:43 PM   #6
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I've had this feeling too when I first purchased my 505. But I had workarounds and after some time, there was PRS+ adding stuff like games, browsing folders, optional noscan for memory cards and so. So I guess for the 900 or 600, there probably comes the time that hacks will be more available. I hope this just happens before I buy my next reader.

Coming from the 505 and buying the 600 recently (the 900 is not available here), the 600 was a big step up in pdf handling. So I think Sony listened somwhat to customer input.
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Old 04-23-2010, 06:23 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dsvick View Post
I've had my PRS-900 for about 2 months now and I'm curious to find out from people that have had their Sony's for a length of time how often do they come out with updates, or do they at all.
Sony update their outdated OS?!?!
I think Sony has quite a lot of catching up if it wants to be on the fruit cart(apple bandwagon). They are terrible at patching their products and they seem to leave the current models crippled so as to sell you a new model. They've only recently decided that they focus too much on the hardware side, and not enough on the software. The president fired a few lead people recently due to their reluctance to concentrate more on intergration of software. Now you have a former software company selling more hardware than the former hardware leader(think iPod to Walkman).Time to get with it Sony you no longer have the industry clout to drag your feet and wait this out. If you don't pick things up you will lose the reader market to Apple as well.
How many misteps does Sony have left before it faces irrellavance?
I know this post sounds mean spirited, but I'm rooting for Sony. They have invented some genius products in their time.

Last edited by perversity; 04-23-2010 at 06:26 PM.
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Old 04-23-2010, 06:34 PM   #8
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I actually don't think your post is mean. Instead of improving existing products, I think Sony rather likes to sell new products. There are some improvements from product to product, even though these are not the biggest steps they could take (from a software point of view). But still, looking at the improvements in pdf support from the 505 to the 600, I think they are doing quite well. A lot of other companies still struggle with the so called "portable document format". Epub and such is nice, but pdf has been on the market for so long and has set standards everyone uses. So why is pdf so poorly implemented.
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Old 04-23-2010, 11:33 PM   #9
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I'm very happy with my 505. Admittedly I only have a couple of thousand books on the SD card, but the scan/index time is maybe 10 minutes. Since I don't use it for ephemeral content (newspapers, etc.), just books, I might only load something once a week or so. Generally I just schedule it for right when I'm about to do something that is not reading, so it doesn't matter if it's spending ten minutes, or an hour for that matter, twiddling its thumbs.

One practical solution might be to put those 13,000 books on several smaller cards, and just pop in the card you happen to need. I'm planning to do that anyway just to cut down on the number of titles I have to page through to get to the one I want.

But anyway, I'm happy with it the way it's working for me.
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Old 04-24-2010, 06:33 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SkyDream View Post
I'm sorry but i can't agree. Sony Readers do NOT what they advertise. At least not all of what they advertise. Have you ever tried to put about 13.000 books on your SD card and put that card into your Sony Reader ? Try it and you see what i mean. Then go and compare to Sonys ad.
I never saw the ad but on their web page they are more careful and just say around 350 books on internal memory and only mention that you can expand memory.

I agree with you though it should be able to handle its full capability with relative ease.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SkyDream View Post
They also said in their ad you can read in direct sunlight with no problems. Seems to be they haven't tried this themself.
Even their website states this, if your device fades in sunlight it is defective and should be returned. My device works flawlessly in the sun.

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Originally Posted by Mike_73 View Post
Epub and such is nice, but pdf has been on the market for so long and has set standards everyone uses. So why is pdf so poorly implemented.
Adobe only recently released (last year)a PDF SDK that includes reflowable text. PDF is not the standard for ereading devices because it was written as a print layout standard and most ereaders are significantly smaller than the standard page.
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Old 04-24-2010, 10:53 AM   #11
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Mike, the 505 update also brought support for SDHC cards rather than just the original SD support... and of course PRS+, as you say, was the next real improvement... I love having a portable library now with nearly 25K of fully accessible books and if that browse files/folders arrives on the 600 then I'll be even happier... it's been promised and I can happily wait


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Originally Posted by Mike_73 View Post
Why would the post an update? They would rather sell another device.
(Sorry, just being sarcastic).

Let's face it, they came up with an update for the 505 approx. 1-2 years after introduction to the market. All it brought was epub support as far as I know.

The only things that improved the 505s functionality were "homebrews" like PRS+ (browse folders and such).

I'm still waiting for parts of PRS+ being ported to the 600. So far, there is the "russification" of the PRS series (300/600/900) which brings russian fonts, clock display, screenshot capability.

On the other side, the Sony FW was stable right from when I bought my devices. So Sony takes the approach to finish a product and then place it on the market rather than putting it on the market and the final functionalities are only on paper and may never come (or come once you bought another reader).

So I think Sony probably won't bring out a FW update for either the 300/600/900, but well, the readers work pretty good and they do what they advertise.
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Old 04-24-2010, 11:49 AM   #12
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Yeah, I've been waiting for the final PRS+, too. I also went through the first beta stages and before just to get some smaller improvements. The clock was one thing I didn't need in the beginning, but once I had it on the reader, I wouldn't want to miss it.

So for the time being, I'm happy with the 600 + the russification which brings the clock and screenshots (and some cyrillic fonts, too). But still, with the touch, I think there may be even more possibilities than on the 505. So lets wait and see what happens.
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Old 04-25-2010, 08:38 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by SkyDream View Post
I'm sorry but i can't agree. Sony Readers do NOT what they advertise. At least not all of what they advertise. Have you ever tried to put about 13.000 books on your SD card and put that card into your S

They have good devices but the FW could definitely be improved (e.g. noscan option for sd cards).
Tut mir leid... but 13,000 books on an SD card or internal memory is a bit over doing it. Seems very impractical unless you are going to Antarctica for a five year walking tour. Use some common sense. put less books on or as others have said,,,,... less books on more SD cards

Soiny has good readers. Not Great but Good. As HarryT and others have said Sony has no obligation to release a firmware update. If you do not like the product sell it and get a different reader.
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Old 04-25-2010, 12:10 PM   #14
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Yeah, get another reader

BTW, if you will, send me some money, too

Well, other readers may be better in this or that point, but currently, I cannot see any device really outperforming the other.

So it finally (again) comes down to your preferences and taking what suits you best There's plenty of choice.

Unfortunately there is no ultimate choice. You can only choose what "harms" you the least.
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Old 04-25-2010, 12:56 PM   #15
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Less books on more cards still doesn't get rid of the wait while the reader scans the card when inserted... and why is 13k books excessive. One of the reasons I want an eReader is to have a pocket library that works... and I've got that with PRS+ on the 505... never mind 13K books, I carry 25K at the moment... I like to decide what I want to read when I want to read, not before I go out, go on holiday etc.

PRS+ proves that this is no problem so it would be nice if the manufacturers would actually offer this... you don't have to use it if you're happy with a handful of books but I want what I now have and that's a portable library


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Tut mir leid... but 13,000 books on an SD card or internal memory is a bit over doing it. Seems very impractical unless you are going to Antarctica for a five year walking tour. Use some common sense. put less books on or as others have said,,,,... less books on more SD cards.
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