E-Read It and Weep, Amazon
Founded nearly a decade ago on patents for printing active-matrix electronic display panels on thin, flexible plastic substrates, Plastic Logic spent the ensuing years developing a lightweight plastic screen that mimics the look–but not the feel–of a magazine or newspaper. And this morning, the company uncrated it. Thinner than a typical pad of notebook paper, the Plastic Logic Reader boasts a letter-sized–8.5-by-11 inches–touchscreen capable of displaying not just newspapers, periodicals and books, but a full range of business document formats as well.
Like Amazon’s (AMZN) Kindle, the Plastic Logic Reader uses a highly legible black-and-white display technology developed by E Ink. And like the Kindle, it can be updated wirelessly. But unlike the Kindle, the Plastic Logic Reader includes touch-based markup and annotation features. It’s also about one-third the Kindle’s thickness and its screen is more than twice as large. It would appear, then, that Plastic Logic’s device will significantly raise the bar on electronic reading devices when it debuts in Jan. 2009, perhaps even beyond the reach of Amazon’s rumored Kindle 2.0.