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Electronic Book for One-Handed Page Turning

Image of a Sony Electronic ReaderThe Sony Reader is an electronic ‘book’ that eliminates the need for two-handed page turning. According to a recent review at Cool Tools, it’s got a screen that’s visible even in sunlight. If the screen is as easy to read as Sony and the review claim, it could be a convenient solution for one-handed reading, either out-and-about, on an across-the-bed table, or just around the house.

At 7 by 4 inches, it’s about the size of a small paperback, and fairly light at only 9 ounces. It recharges in about 4 hours, and each charge is good for about 7,500 page “turns” — according to the review, the approximate equivalent of about 7 book’s worth of page-turning.

‘Books’ can be purchased at the Sony Connect store. For you those of you who speak the lingo, the Reader uses BBeB as well as PDF, TXT and RTF formats.

Quite pricey at $350 (USD), but maybe just the tool for the right avid reader who has difficulty turning pages and holding conventional books.

Read the whole, information-packed review on Cool Tools.

Available on the Sony website, and at Best Buy.

Update: Maybe the Reader’s available at a brick-and-mortar Best Buy somewhere, but not in the Mid-Atlantic states right now; none in stores, and none in “the warehouse”. I stopped by yesterday (5/18/07) hoping to see one, and an employee checked BB’s internal inventory system, with that rather dismal result.

6 replies on “Electronic Book for One-Handed Page Turning”

I tested this thing at a focus group once. I told them I think it needs: the ability to zoom in and change font size (yeah, my eyes are going) AND the ability to bookmark pages and write comments in the margins, like in Microsoft Word or in real books. Then I might consider it.

Both terrific enhancements — or, as you suggest, Susan, necessary ones! According to the Cool Tools reviewer, the Reader does incorporate bookmarking, but even my browser lets me change font size with a keystroke.

Interesting that I discounted the “write in the margins” feature. I’ve never written in a book in my life (even in college, even in grad school). It wasn’t tempting when I (rarely) read books on my old PDA. I wonder if I’d be tempted to when using an electronic reader?

I’m not sure that being able to make notes in margins would matter for my dad, who might use a reader if he becomes unable to hold books, but it does seems as if it’s a feature that should be available — and it is a defining difference between this Sony and other, more expensive, electronic books.

Right now, we can rummage through dusty boxes of similar out-dated things that are only a few years old, in the closets I share with my spouse. Ah, technology — no need to wait a century for the dust to settle . . . normally, about six months does the trick.

Happened on this post and if you haven’t found the Reader yet they’re on sale at all Border’s Bookstores. I been able to see and play around with one at the local Border’s here and it’s my understnading they are available at the other Border’s across the country too. I think their was a special a while back that if you buy one you get some free ebooks or something like that. They also seel the carrying case at Borders…

John D, thanks for this information — Borders seems like a much better fit, retail-wise, than a big box electronics store. What could be more natural than a place where readers congregate?

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