I’m looking at spending anything from several months to a couple of years in Taipei from January on, and the more I look at it the more ebook reader devices that use the new e-ink technology that creates an experience almost identical to reading off a paper page make sense, in financial terms at least.
I’m in the UK, and very often these devices are hard to get here, at least for the moment. The main ones seem to be the Sony PRS-505, and the Amazon Kindle. Now I quite fancy the former, esp. after having looked at the potentially enormous cost of ordering physical books and having them sent over- and I read a lot.
I know from my last visit there are various Sony centres scattered around Taipei, but would anyone who’s spent more time wandering the vast Taipei computer stores happen to know anywhere there that sells devices the same as or similar to the Sony ebook reader? The Kindle is so far resolutely unavailable outside the States. The PRS has some presence internationally, and I just read about a new Korean device called the Nuut.
As to why I don’t buy one through a reseller here in the UK … well, they slap enormous taxes on anything they can here, and as much as I’d like to get one of these things, there are limits to just how much I can bring myself to spend!
For anyone who’s not quite familiar with these devices - these are not PDA’s. The screen technology is completely different; it uses reflected rather than projected light, meaning the display is not backlit. The only power usage is when you change pages, which means you can sometimes go months without recharging. The reading experience is akin to or identical to reading off actual paper. You can read it in full daylight, although like a regular book, you need a light if it’s dark.
The main makes are: the Sony PRS-505, Cyteen Cybook (v3), Irex Iliad and the Amazon Kindle.