It's hard for some people to imagine, but Sony was the first major brand to offer an e-book reader back in 2006--beating the original Amazon Kindle to market by at least 14 months. Since then, however, the company's e-book strategy has been one step forward and two steps back as it plays catch-up with upstart competitors Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
Consider the 2010 Sony Readers: the models pioneered e-ink touch screens months before the Nook and Kobo, but they inexplicably omitted Wi-Fi from most models--instead requiring readers to tether to a PC and download new e-books. Those Sonys were also priced far above competing Kindle and Nook models at the time.
A year later, Sony is updating its Reader line, and this time the company seems to be more in tune with current e-reader features and pricing.
The new Sony Reader Wi-Fi PRS-T1 hits stores this October for $149. The responsive touch screen is intact, and the inclusion of Wi-Fi and that lower price tag finally gets Sony into the same pricing and features realm as the Kindle, Nook, and Kobo Touch. Oh, and it's nice to see Sony simplifying its e-reader product line with one 6-inch model that comes in three colors--black, red, and white.Additional Sony IFA announcements Sony bets on quality with S and P Android tablets Sony debuts Android-based Walkman prototype Hands-on with Sony's new Vaio SE 15-inch laptop Sony debuts 3D OLED head-mounted display
We got a chance to take an early look at the Reader Wi-Fi several weeks ago behind closed doors. The unit we saw was a nonworking prototype, but since the new Reader is essentially a redesigned version of last year's PRS-650, the most important takeaways from the preview were the new form factor and lighter weight (partially due to an all-plastic, rather than metal, casing). … Read more