I’ll stick with paper – Sony has another new e-reader, but it’s too rich for my blood

Sony announced today that they’ll be selling a new e-reader with a touch screen and wireless capability (obviously to rival the Kindle) for $299. This new Sony e-reader, coming on the heels of the release of their Reader Pocket and Reader Touch Editions which lacking wireless capability, will be available in December and is being called the Daily Edition. Meh, to the name. Though it does make me think of some kind of cross between The Daily Show, the Daily Planet and  NPR’s Morning Edition, all good things.

Is it just me or are the price tags for all these e-readers — Kindles, Sony, what have you — just still unappealing? $299? I don’t have that just lying around. Oh, I know it’s not ridiculously exorbitant. You can’t feed a third-world nation with that money, or even buy a decent lcd tv. But it’s not peanuts, at least not to me. And yes, I know, I was willing to shell out that much for my iPhone, but, well, it’s an iPhone. It calls people, and plays music, and goes on the Internet, and has games, keeps my calendar, gets me places, and makes the world generally a better place. The Daily Edition will just store books for me to read, and that’s it. Technically my iPhone (and yes, that’s as in “my preciousssss) can do that, too. And, you know, I may not have $299 lying around, but I do have all these books, old-fashioned and all, sure, but lying around already paid for, and waiting to be read. I can just keep reading those, and buying some new ones every now and then (most of them cost much less than $299) and even borrow them for free from the library. A lot of us reader-folk aren’t that annoyed by having to carry a book around, and most of us, when struck with the sudden urge to read a particular book, can wait the very short time it would take us to acquire it, should we so desire. (Amazon and Barnes & Noble both have pretty fast shipping. And again, the library.) My point is, the price tag is just too high. You’ve already got to convince me to change the way I do something, the way I read, something that’s fundamental to my life. Making it pricey just isn’t going to sweeten that deal… especially since, and I’m one of those gadgety people, you actually haven’t yet convinced me it’s worth doing at all.

11 thoughts on “I’ll stick with paper – Sony has another new e-reader, but it’s too rich for my blood

  1. You know, honestly, I’m just not that into the idea of Kindles or other electronic reading devices. There is something sensuous and real about holding a book in my hands, turning the pages, getting the occasional paper cut, and enjoying the smell of cracked bindings that still appeals to me.

    Then again, you’re talking to the person who still keeps her client schedule handwritten in a leather planning book, which she can’t live without. So…

  2. 🙂 Whatever works for you!

    I love gadgets, but I just can’t get onboard with this one, and I think for me it’s more the price. I’m paying so much for the device, and then ebooks aren’t cheaper than your average paperback, and for what? If I thought authors made more money this way, maybe I’d understand, but it seems to me the publishing house is saying, “We won’t have production costs, and we’ll charge the same, and we’ll make more money!”

  3. That’s why I don’t own any of these: the cost-benefit analysis doesn’t hold up.

    First of all, it’s an electronic device. Electronic devices BREAK and even if they don’t break, you have to view them as having a general life span of a couple of years.

    First, I have to buy a device, expected investment between $200-$300. Then I go and I look at the prices on the electronic files available for this gadget, and realize they’re not a whole heck of a lot better than the mass market paperback price.

    Saving $1-3/book, over say 3-4 years expected life span . . . eh. And then you got to consider say if this damned thing requires some sort of data connection package if you want to be able to access the online store whenever/where ever.

  4. Exactly. And on top of all *that*, I’m still sitting here unconvinced that this is the way I want to do my reading from here on out. I’m barely even on the fence about it, and that price tag just pushes me even further away.

  5. See, I’ve done so much of my reading online for say, the past decade, that I actually find the idea of a haul-it-with-me reading device pretty attractive. Double if it allows me to WRITE as well (I don’t think any do . . .)

    That’s what I want. I have this vision of a little electronic device, smaller than a laptop, that allows me to READ and WRITE where ever, whenever. I even have this vision of perhaps a small pair of gloves or some type of projection that can function as a full size keyboard. WHERE IS THIS DEVICE?

  6. I’ve looked at the Dell mini, but it’s really just another laptop. I want something I can stick in my pocket.

    Really, even the iPhone/Crackberry like devices are getting there (memory and capacity-wise, they can all run word processor like programs), but someone has to devise a transportable typing mechanism. I don’t wanna type with my thumbs.

  7. Way back in the day I had a Palm Pilot and I bought the collapsible keyboard to go with it, for that reason. But that was a big clunker, even folded up, and I never really ended up using it. So yeah, something to type on, but lightweight or projected or something.

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  9. I like the concept. I read off screens more than actual books. Heck, I listen to more audiobooks than anything else these days. It just seems with the hubbub of the evening, making dinner, spending time with the husband, playing with cats, doing chores, etc., that my evenings are full. My commute is a good time to spend with a book.

    BTW, audiobooks are ridiculously expensive, too. My last few audiobooks have been borrowed from the library. But they aren’t in the XBox price range. That price point definitely turns me off.

  10. I’ve noticed that about audiobooks! Yeah, you don’t have to buy the device all over again, but the audiobooks themselves are a little more than I can swing. Eh, maybe I’m just being cheap.
    The library is great for audiobooks, def.!

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