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Asus DR-950 eBook Reader Seen In Wild

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Asus DR-950 eBook Reader Spotted In Wild

We've been hearing and seeing evidence of Asus' move into the ever more popular eBook reader market for a while now but it's only today that we got a chance to see some hard evidence. We have obtained pictures of the officially upcoming Asus DR-950, a 9in touchscreen touting, grey-scale e-ink device.

As well as sporting one of the largest screens we've seen for a conventional eBook reader, the DR-950's display (that supports 16 levels of grey) also has an impressive resolution of 1,024 x 768. Thanks to its touch-sensitivity it will also have an on-screen keyboard and be able to recognise handwriting, though a text-to-speech function with support for 26 languages will probably be the more oft used feature. You also get a web browser, dictionary, and RSS reader while Audible, MP3, PDF, TXT, and unprotected ePub files are supported.

In terms of hardware you get Wi-Fi and 3G so you'll potentially be able to get the latest content wherever you are. You also get both a 3.5mm headphone jack and stereo speakers as well as 4GB of internal memory and an SD card slot. As for dimensions, 222 x 161 x 9mm makes this slightly larger than the likes of the Sony PRS-600 and Amazon Kindle but considering the amount of extra screen area you're getting, you'll get no complaints from us.

Asus has not yet confirmed pricing or availability, nor indeed information on what media partners might be involved in distributing over-the-air content, but we've heard hints of £250 and sometime in April for the former and are assured that there are some with regards the latter. Could this really start to push the eBook reader forward into the mainstream? Well at that price, probably not quite yet but it's definitely a step in the right direction.

supersizeme

January 22, 2010, 10:40 pm

hmmm, never did see the point in e-book readers - roll on tablets....slates....er pebbles?. Until I can browse articles and click on links as well as update calenders, emails and order a pizza I will wait..

xbrumster

January 23, 2010, 12:28 am

anyone with a bit of sense would wait to see what Apple brings before buying any tablets/eReaders.. & then if Apple shows off what they have in the pocket on the 27th Jan and launch the tablet in June, you would think other firms will by then produce something competitive or more interesting.. (from the history of iphone, it seems unlikely)





5 days to go. buying a lotto ticket.

Hamish Campbell

January 23, 2010, 12:55 am

well I can see two good uses for me





1. Replacement for physical novels, though then I want a smaller screen size than this as it needs to be portable and less breakable.





2. A size like this (paid for by work :) ) to use to read work documents, then I don't need to use a tree to print out 50 page documents.





And both need to be e-ink, as reading off lcds is nasty. If it wasn't then you wouldn't see people printing off those 50 page documents. Will be cool when something like this is so cheap that its worth it to buy for all workers rather than have them use a similar amount of paper over the course of a few years.

Hans Gruber

January 23, 2010, 8:51 am

Looks very tempting to me. I like it's seeming simplicity of design form, display size and resolution coupled with use of e-ink technology. Being responsive to touch with wifi connectivity (not sure about need for 3G though), it seems like a good device to use in the home or office.





Where it gets less desirable perhaps is using it whilst out and about, at least for the non-business user I suppose. More casual users may be better served with something smaller and flexible/foldable. 3G makes more sense for those using it on the go though, but in this form factor it'll likely be office/academic/professional and studenty types who'll find it most practical.





As for the I-Slate or Tablet from Apple, it'll likely cost at least double and will almost certainly be a different breed of device more akin to the Iphone and the like: ie, in colour, multi-touch, and freakin' expensive - just a larger version perhaps. It scares me to think how much it'll cost and the new legions of I-fools to follow in the wake of the Slate.

Ash

January 23, 2010, 7:50 pm

Looks tempting, if they get the price below £250 I would get one. I hope they support SDHC for SD cards. I wonder what the other netbook manufacturers come out with. Though I must say, I would have liked it better if it came in metal casing.

DrDark

January 23, 2010, 11:11 pm

@red: Thanks! "iFools" is going straight into my dictionary ;).





@Ash: I still like this one the best, but no idea when it might be available...


http://www.wired.co.uk/news/ar...

Vivid

January 24, 2010, 9:20 pm

"@red: Thanks! "iFools" is going straight into my dictionary ;)."





I prefer iDiots.





It looks as though it could be a genuinely useful product provided it can accept notes to be added to documents as I often need to add comments and corrections when I review reports. It's the first eReader I've seen that looks like it could be a genuine business tool rather than just a blinged up electric novel.

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