Sony’s Wireless e-Reader Draws a Blank

blankereaderWhen I heard that Sony was announcing a wireless e-reader, I kind of shrugged my shoulders thinking not much of it.  Seemed like a preemptive shot at whatever Apple had going for their September announcement anyway, so what the heck?

However, when I read a story about it in The Wall Street Journal during breakfast, I dropped my spoon because twice it pointed out that the screen on the demo unit was blank:

“The Daily Edition prototype that Sony showed off at its New York launch displayed a blank screen without any text, and the company did not make a version available for hands-on handling. In contrast, when Amazon released its newest Kindle in May, it used a working version to demonstrate features and let reporters handle prototypes.”

Three paragraphs later:

“Sony’s Daily Edition can be held vertically to display one page of a book or turned horizontally so that it shows two pages, which Mr. Haber said makes it feel “more like a real book.” The sample Daily Edition that Sony showed at a press event Tuesday had a blank screen.”

I have been reading and writing about tech for quite some time and can honestly say that I haven’t seen this kind of “smack” in print.  In a blog, certainly!  But in the Journal?  My sense is that Geoffrey Fowler and Niraj Sheth were implying this may be vapor-ware and probably a last gasp by Sony to be relevant before Apple makes its move in September.

You can read my thoughts over at the Examiner (Sony “Unveils” Wireless e-Reader at New York Public Library).

One thing’s for sure, the e-Reader space will be an interesting one to watch in the next several months and through the holiday season.

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