"Kindle", Amazon's e-book reader, ignites interest (and weird.nl)

It's IT Blogwatch: in which Amazon prepares to launch its Kindle e-book reader. Not to mention those crazy Dutch and their strange stores...

Steven Levy reports:

Amazon's Jeff Bezos ... wants to change the way we read ... [he] already built a better bookstore. Now he believes he can improve upon one of humankind's most divine creations: the book itself ... [He's] releasing the Amazon Kindle, an electronic device that he hopes will leapfrog over previous attempts at e-readers and become the turning point in a transformation toward Book 2.0. [more]
Linda Rosencrance is alive and kicking:
Amazon.com Inc. is set to announce its e-book reader in New York on Monday ... Jeff Bezos will unveil the device, called the Kindle, at an event at the W Hotel in Union Square ... The Kindle is equipped with a Wi-Fi connection that allows users to buy and download electronic books from a newly created Amazon e-book store ... The device comes with a headphone jack for audiobooks, and a small reading light attached to an adjustable arm. [more]
Here's Conrad Quilty-Harper: [Crazy name, crazy guy]

$399, 6-inch E-ink screen, no backlight, EV-DO "Whispernet" on Sprint for over the air book purchases ... Books will go for $9.99, and users can even subscribe to newspapers and "select blogs" for monthly fees. Also news is that the Kindle gets 30 hours of battery life, and can fully recharge in only two. One thing's for sure, this is looking way more compelling a package than previous attempts at the eBook idea. [more]
Richard MacManus:
The vision of an Internet-connected eBook Reader has been one of my obsessions over the years. And now it looks like Amazon has, finally, taken the always-nascent eBook industry to the next level ... Internet connectivity ... is what will differentiate the Kindle from its chief competitor currently, the Sony eReader that was launched in 2006. [more]
But Mark Twomey disagrees:
Yes Kindle is nifty technology but it's no more a nifty technology than it was when I looked at Sony Reader a few years ago. The one big win I can see is that you could search your eBook collection, something I'd find useful since I've spent more than a few minutes leafing through dead tree format books looking for some fact, story or quotation I'm certain I've read but can't remember exactly. [more]
Ian Betteridge is worried:
What none of the reports seem to talk about is the form of digital rights management (DRM) which Kindle uses. In theory, if it's a totally closed product, then it shouldn't need much - but in practice, I suspect it will be heavily tied to Amazon, and regularly check back with Amazon to determine if the content it's carrying is licensed to you ... EVDO doesn't work in Europe, so if it has to check content keys, it won't work. [more]
The Grauniad's Jack Schofield agrees:
I think it will be a tough sell: $400 buys a lot of books, or gets you the better-looking Sony eReader and $100 in change. Plus, once you've bought the hardware, how often will you spend, say, $10 on a book that's burdened with DRM and can never be loaned or resold -- or $2 on an old classic you can probably download for nothing. [more]
Martin Veitch strikes the killer blow:
But will it succeed? The short answer is, 'nah, probably not' ... $399 [is] a price that is crazy as a loon ... E-books are handy for blokes up telegraph poles consulting compex manuals. They are very poor indeed for blokes sat at home with a calming drink, working their way through Our Mutual Friend. The End. [more]
And finally...

Buffer overflow:

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Richi Jennings is an independent analyst/adviser/consultant, specializing in blogging, email, and spam. A 20 year, cross-functional IT veteran, he is also an analyst at Ferris Research. You too can pretend to be Richi's friend on Facebook, or just use boring old email: blogwatch@richi.co.uk.

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