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Old 02-13-2007, 07:04 AM   #1
Alexander Turcic
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Polymer Vision Readius - first photo from 3GSM

John Biggs shot the first photo of the Polymer Vision Readius presented at the 3GSM congress in Barcelona this year. The Readius, aka Cellular Book, aka librofonino, has a flexible 5-inch e-paper display capable of displaying 16 grey levels. Most likely it's going to be exclusively available in Italy later this year.

Let's cross fingers for more photos to pop up soon.

Related: Rollup screen e-reader device for 2007
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Old 02-13-2007, 08:17 AM   #2
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I must admit that I am a little disappointed to see another prototype device instead of a production ready Cellular Book. This looks very much like the device presented last year (only now it is silver).

My friend is currently on the plane to Barcelona, and should be attending the show tomorrow armed with a digital camera and a lot of extra batteries.

If he has an internet connection in his hotel room, I should be receiving some pictures of the device tomorrow night, otherwise we will have to wait until friday morning when he meets me in Malaga. Keeping my fingers crossed also.
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Old 02-13-2007, 09:39 AM   #3
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The technology itself looks great, although I expect larger screen on these devices (that's the point if you can hide most of the screen, bigger screen for less space in your pocket/bag). But from what they said, they're working on a closed system for it in Italy, and that's not customer-friendly at all. GSM/Wifi support is good, and WiMax will be even better but they drain the battery way too much, I expect a really good battery monitoring system on such a device.

E-ink and flexible display, isn't just interesting because it looks much better than LCD for reading purpose, it is also a great opportunity to carry larger screen on a mobile device and increasing the usage time between battery recharges.
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Old 02-13-2007, 01:35 PM   #4
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I'm with Hadrien with being underwhelmed.

In another posting, many people referenced the Readius, and when I ran a google search, I found that the prototype was announced in 2005. A year and a half later, consumers are slated to get the product.
The product still only has a five inch screen. Indeed, it is astounding to have a flexible computer display. Yes, I find it encouraging that these products are becoming more common. However, I really wonder how useful a 5 inch screen is to most people.
When a product is released that can display A4 images--say, a PDF that does not need to be integrated, interpolated, or otherwise adulterated--then I will be impressed.
Until that time, most folks will simply counter any enthusiasm by early adopters by suggesting "I can do that on my phone" (yes, I know that the Readius is itself a phone) or "I'll just buy a UMPC."
I am all for innovation, but I am pessimistic about this devices chances considering its diminutive size.
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Old 02-13-2007, 02:45 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pitchfork
I must admit that I am a little disappointed to see another prototype device instead of a production ready Cellular Book.
That's exactly why I don't go to car shows anymore. It's obvious where they get their cue from!
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Old 02-13-2007, 04:43 PM   #6
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The earlier model wasn't a prototype, it was a proof of concept. Or so I was told.

The difference is that Polymer Vision was apparently in the market of supplying rollable displays a year and half ago, and now it's in the market of making devices. Technologically that may not be a big step, conceptually it is.
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Old 02-14-2007, 05:52 AM   #7
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Did you notice that the Readius (prototype) looks different from the Cellular Book (the one that will come out in Italy this year)? The Readius is wrapped in a nice brushed aluminium look, while the Cellular Book looks like a cheap piece of plastic.

And neither is close to what the earlier concept looked like.
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Old 02-14-2007, 09:21 AM   #8
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This device is too small to be a comfortable reader, unless in an emergency. It would be a marvelous format for a PDA though!
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Old 02-14-2007, 10:25 AM   #9
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I have just spoken to my friend at 3GSM.

The photo in this thread is not the actual device, this is simply a demonstration of how resilient the screen is. My friend has taken a number of pictures of the "real" device and I should have them this evening.
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Old 02-14-2007, 10:30 AM   #10
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Okay, Pitchfork, you've successfully got us all drooling. (sluuurrrrp!)
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Old 02-14-2007, 11:36 AM   #11
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Attached are some live photos via CNet.

Notice: Books - Now reading: Harry Potter and the sorcerers stone
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Old 02-14-2007, 11:44 AM   #12
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It's gadgety but cooooool!
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Old 02-14-2007, 12:10 PM   #13
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Notice: Books - Now reading: Harry Potter and the sorcerers stone
Hah!

How indiscreet of them.


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It's gadgety but cooooool!
Don't you mean 'gadgety and coooool,' yvanleterrible?
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Old 02-14-2007, 01:56 PM   #14
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I have a question for folks who have actually seen e-ink devices in person:

The farthest right image, the title page of Sherlock Holmes, looks immensely more clear and like black ink on white paper than the shots of the SONY Reader that I've seen.

Are the specifications for the Readius that much more superior to the Reader(in terms of contrast, resolution, &tc) or it just a really, really good photograph?

If the latter is the case, I may need to recant some early shabbier things I said about this device
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Old 02-14-2007, 02:23 PM   #15
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@Cthulhu

The contrast of an eInk screen is very dependent on the amount of available light.

It is quite normal for a trade show booth to have over 1.000 Watts of light available so the device will look it's best in those conditions.

AFAIK the Readius screen has the same specs. as the Iliad and Sony Reader with regard to contrast, so the better looking screen is purely due to the favorable lighting conditions.

Last edited by Pitchfork; 02-14-2007 at 02:31 PM.
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