Overnight, Giz ran an item on iRex’s $US400 DR800SG. It has an 8.1-inch touchscreen, 3G Gobi chip with unlimited Verizon data access and wireless downloads from Barnes & Noble’s e-book store. Not long before this, we heard about the Courier – which, I know, is not an e-book, but could fill that function if needed. As can an iPhone (though I don’t recommend it) or a Blackberry (nada on that one, too, too small) and a host of other devices, not least of which is the Kindle.
But the e-book war seems largely contained to the US, as Giz reported back in May, when Bebook launched its first product in Oz.
Then, this morning Giz got the word on a new e-reader from BeBook, the Mini.
The blurb, for your pleasure
With its 5-inch E-Ink screen, the readable area is just 1-inch smaller across. This ensures optimal portability and readability at the same time. The new 8-level greyscale screen approximates the experience of reading printed text… The BeBook Mini has a fast 400mhz Arm processor for fast page turning and a convenient thumb wheel for even more reading convenience.
I dunno about the size of that screen. Portability is one thing but long-form reads and small screen real estate are not the best of partners.
But I do like the format support. Here goes: ePub, PDF, doc, html, bmp, jpg, png, gif, tif, djvu, fb2, wol, txt, ppt, pdb, lit*, chm, rar, zip, mp3, mobi*, prc*, htm and mbp are all supported. (*=non DRM). That should cover the bases. It also has a built-in SD card slot and USB 2.0 connection to expand the memory up to 16GB using SD.
The asking price is $389. Further info over at Bebook.
Look for a Giz hands-on with the Bebook Mini in the near future.