New Sony Readers Coming Soon?

While the Kindle, nook, and iPad get most of the attention, there have been several rumors about Sony ereaders in the news lately. The first rumor comes from Sony Insider (via Publisher Weekly’s PWxyz blog), who says that two new touchscreen Sony Reader devices with e-ink technology are coming soon. They say,

The two new Sony Reader devices will be very attractively priced, and are definitely much more compact and lighter than previous models with a possible width under 10mm (extremely thin). From what we’re hearing the new models will also have improved contrast and faster page turns. The PRS-650 will have a six inch screen while the PRS-350 will have a five inch screen. There will also be a bump in capacity from the usual 512MB or less found in currently Sony Reader models to 2GB of internal storage. We are not sure if that capacity bump extends to both devices, but will most certainly be true for the PRS-650. We also know that the PRS-650 will have Wi-Fi (and possibly free 3G), while the PRS-350 will not have any wireless connectivity (like the PRS-300).

Meanwhile, Enterprise Mobility is speculating that the Sony Reader could become a casualty of the Kindle-iPad-nook war for ereader dominance. They cite a recent Slashgear article about Sony looking to use Android for its future ereader operating system. Here’s an excerpt from their article:

It’s no secret that Sony has fallen behind in the e-reader wars, especially when it comes to mindshare. In July, Sony mirrored its rivals’ price-cuts, dropping the cost of the Sony Reader Pocket Edition to $149, the new Daily Edition to $299, and the Touch Edition to $169. On top of that, Sony recently shined up the design of its Reader Store for e-books.

But if Sony plans to use Android as the operating system for its future e-readers, it could be tacit acknowledgment that none of its previous steps have been enough; through Android, Sony could conceivably add software features equivalent to those of the ever-more-advanced Kindle and Nook.

So does anyone have experience with the Sony Reader? How does it stack up to the Kindle and the nook?

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