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Old 06-25-2010, 11:47 AM   #1
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Unhappy Plastic Logic delays Que launch indefinitely and cancels pre-orders

Que - Even if they do ever ship how would they ever compete and why would most consumers trust their money with them. (I think it is a cool device, but I would never buy one now) I said it before in other threads; the large format e-ink reader has lost its market window, not because select people like us think they are cool, but because the consuming masses will buy an ipad or the like for $500 before the shell out $600-$800 for a dedicated specialty device like this.

No matter what we think is a better reading technology, e-ink vs lcd etc. The manufacturers are slave to what the majority of people will actually purchase. Consumer history is rife with choices based on convenience vs technological superiority. (It is really a subjective discussion at best any way). 3,000,000+ ipads sold and counting; I am not sure how many DR1000's were sold over its entire life, but I would stand to reason it is a mere fraction of that number; and it is in the end, a numbers game

My prediction is low-end 5 and 6 inch e-ink at a sub $100 price point and large format color do-everything devices at a $400 -$700 price point. Its all about volume, thats what bit Irex I believe.

http://www.engadget.com/2010/06/25/p...cancels-pre-o/
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Old 06-25-2010, 11:51 AM   #2
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David - I've changed the thread title to explain what this is about. Your original title of "Another one bites the dust" was a little too cryptic for the News forum!
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Old 06-25-2010, 11:58 AM   #3
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David - I've changed the thread title to explain what this is about. Your original title of "Another one bites the dust" was a little too cryptic for the News forum!
fair enough - Perhaps I had the Queen song stuck in my head...
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Old 06-25-2010, 12:08 PM   #4
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It's really too bad about the QUE. I am planning on buying a new reader. My Sony 505 works perfectly, so it will go to my wife, who has started using it and loves it. The only reason I'm hunting for a new reader is I want one with a larger screen to make reading my newspapers and magazines easier.

Originally I had hoped for the QUE but the delays forced that one aside. Then I had high hopes for the Irex 800, but the requirement of using a stylus and not having a good way to tether the stylus safely to the device, plus some of the essential features that were planned for firmware upgrades rather than as part of the initial release, killed that. Turns out it is a good thing I didn't buy it.

I have considered the Sony 900, but I'm not convinced a 7.1-inch screen is large enough for my wants. So I'm waiting for a good 8- or 9-inch screen size (or possibly a 9.7-inch, but nothing larger). I don't care about color and I definitely do not want an LCD screen -- I already spend 7+ hours every day in front of 3 LCD screens to read the manuscripts I edit; I don't want to spend more time in front of a computer screen.

I might well have bought a QUE had it finally seen the light of day; I will definitely buy a larger screen device in the not-too-distant future, assuming they become available.
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Old 06-25-2010, 04:31 PM   #5
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I might well have bought a QUE had it finally seen the light of day; I will definitely buy a larger screen device in the not-too-distant future, assuming they become available.
Pocketbook Global has a model 901 coming in sept you might want to look into, then. (They are aiming for a price in the $350 range.) Their software is maintained as a common platform across models and so far it is very very good and very user friendly.
There are several threads with info and even video of the pre-release prototypes.

I'm keeping an eye on it myself.
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Old 06-25-2010, 04:40 PM   #6
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Things like this is why I don't bank or tout the greatness of products that haven't shipped.

The Que is also going to face stiff competition from the Kindle DX (same size, same screen, lower price point) and iPad, which has the same size screen, with color, with touch, with 4x as much RAM and at a lower price point.

Plastic Logic is probably done.
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Old 06-25-2010, 05:41 PM   #7
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Pocketbook Global has a model 901 coming in sept you might want to look into, then. (They are aiming for a price in the $350 range.) Their software is maintained as a common platform across models and so far it is very very good and very user friendly.
There are several threads with info and even video of the pre-release prototypes.

I'm keeping an eye on it myself.
I love the tech, but I am still struggling with the economics of the big readers. Most have no content revenue stream so even if they sell 100,000 the first year. (which seems lile a huge number) how do they support themselves ongoing (thats only $350,000 - thats the salary of three Directors level jobs and of that how much is profit after they rebrand the device from Netronics; $200k 100K less? ). Pocketbook just rebrands Netronics correct?

I feel more comfortable with my iPad at this point . I dont see pocketbook having a really solid sustainable market. (along with many of the other small ebook makers) The only way to survive is to have a long term sustainable revenue flow, like Amazon, or make them disposably cheap so people just buy them on impulse and also replace them as the old one breaks (toasters)
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Old 06-25-2010, 06:19 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by davidspitzer View Post
I love the tech, but I am still struggling with the economics of the big readers. Most have no content revenue stream so even if they sell 100,000 the first year. (which seems lile a huge number) how do they support themselves ongoing (thats only $350,000 - thats the salary of three Directors level jobs and of that how much is profit after they rebrand the device from Netronics; $200k 100K less? ). Pocketbook just rebrands Netronics correct?
You missed a couple zero's.

I think Large size ink screens are effectively dead unless they can drop into the sub $300 range.
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Old 06-25-2010, 07:02 PM   #9
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PocketBook is a BIG company. Not Apple big but really big. PocketBook merged with Netronix this year to form a joint venture called PocketBook Global. PocketBook prior to the JV was already like 4th in the world in ereader sales with revenue around $37 million in 2009, while basically only selling in Russia. They're going to do better than $100 million this year.

http://eon.businesswire.com/portal/s...95&newsLang=en

http://www.kyivpost.com/news/guide/g.../detail/70953/

they JV creates a company that is 2nd or 3rd in ereader production and sales.

PocketBook uses some hardware designs from Netronix but also uses its own designs as with the 360 and the upcoming larger readers. PocketBook has its own firmware that is not shared with the other Netronix clones.

PocketBook even opened its own brick and mortar store front this year in
Kiev and they are currently selling in over 20 countries. They are also working with the Russian government on integrating ereaders into schools.

Now I admit I have a bit of bias since I sell their product, but they have made a strong presence in the market even better. They are in markets the "big guys" are not (officially) and they are opening new markets like South America . You dont have to worry about this company going away any time soon- they actually ship product

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Old 06-25-2010, 07:14 PM   #10
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Most have no content revenue stream so even if they sell 100,000 the first year. (which seems lile a huge number) how do they support themselves ongoing (thats only $350,000 - thats the salary of three Directors level jobs and of that how much is profit after they rebrand the device from Netronics; $200k 100K less? ).
That is actually $35,000,000 - which is enough for three directors plus me and a cute little secretary. For large devices it might be worth glancing at the Asus DR 900 which is a 9" reader with a whole bunch of useful applications including a calculator
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Old 06-25-2010, 07:26 PM   #11
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You missed a couple zero's.

I think Large size ink screens are effectively dead unless they can drop into the sub $300 range.
Not necessarily.

I'd pay for an 11" e-ink device which can present regular PDFs at almost full size.

Annotation is not a must for me, but for business use, it would be necessary.

The great battery life of e-ink is another very important advantage: for travel, the 10 hours of the iPad is often woefully inadequate. Even at home, I hated it when I forgot to plug in my old iRex and it died just as I was settling in in bed for the night, hoping to read for an hour or so.

Then, for extended reading, I think I'd give the nod to e-ink as well.

I have really cooled-off on the tablet thing somewhat. Because, even if I got a tablet:

-- At home, I would always prefer to watch movies/videos on large screens, or browse the web, Flash and all, on my iMac, or write emails on my iMac;

-- When I travel, I would always bring along my Mac Book Pro, which is a must for getting work done, and it is also better for browsing the web, or writing email;

-- If I am out and about, I would always carry my iPhone (just ordered a 4" Samsung Galaxy S Android and use it for email, text, etc..

Which leaves any tablet I would have, to serve primarily as an e-reader. But then, as I noted above, a large screen e-ink device would serve this purpose better, IMO.
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Old 06-25-2010, 07:40 PM   #12
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That is actually $35,000,000 - which is enough for three directors plus me and a cute little secretary. For large devices it might be worth glancing at the Asus DR 900 which is a 9" reader with a whole bunch of useful applications including a calculator
ooh a cute little secretary-nahh my wife will never go for it.

Asus isnt actually selling the DR900 yet
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Old 06-26-2010, 03:20 AM   #13
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I can't say I didn't see this one coming ...
Mind you, the way that press release/e-mail reads, with sufficient amount of optimism you can say they may be only delaying the release, but I'm all out of optimism wtr large format e-readers.
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Old 06-26-2010, 04:04 AM   #14
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Que is dead: what a shocker. No one could see that one coming...
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Old 06-26-2010, 06:20 AM   #15
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If they get out into the market it will be to stutter and fall to the ground dead to be eaten by little fishes and it's carcass to be reduced to dust by iPad, Kindle, Nook and Sony.

That's how I see it. Because from the love I professed to the "PlasticReader" in 2008 only pure hate remains, seing as they delay it and delay it and delay it again once more!

Quote:
We've been working hard to bring the world's first product based on plastic electronics technology to market -- and have decided that delaying the device a bit longer will result in a better product for you.
A "bit" longer? They have been at it for three freaking years! They are not releasing the first device of it's kind! No revolution there! Just 11" inches of e-reader. It's not even in color! What can be so hard? They had nice responsive prototypes!

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We do hope, however, that you will stay on our list of customers interested in knowing about our progress and details of our upcoming product shipment.
Inscription above PlasticLogic's door: "Abandon hope, ye who enter here!"

GJMS
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