Starting from mid-April, Plastic Logic will also begin to ship its exciting e-book reader called QUE:
The Plastic Logic QUE will be equipped with a 10.5-inch plastic E Ink display with a resolution of 944x1264 pixels and 8 grades of gray. Measuring 215.9 x 279.4 x 8.4 millimeters, this e-book reader will weigh 482 grams. The key feature of the Plastic Logic QUE is that it offers extended support for Microsoft Office formats, including Outlook. Being compatible with smartphones (with BlackBerries by default), the QUE can serve as an organizer and a sort of a mobile paper-less office. It must be noted that Microsoft’s formats seem to be supported through conversion into other formats through QUE’s auxiliary utilities (but PDF, GIF, JPEG, PNG, BMP, ePub and TXT are supported natively).
Besides a Bluetooth interface, the QUE is equipped with a Wi-Fi module. The senior model – there are two versions with 4GB and 8GB of memory on board – is equipped with a 3G communication module. The rich connectivity of this e-book reader is targeted at services that sell books and subscription publications (newspapers and magazines) as the 10.5-inch display will show a magazine page well without zooming in or out. The reader has a touch-sensitive display, so you can search and type test by means of a software keyboard.
Later in this year the device will be available through the retail network of Barnes & Noble, a major American bookseller which already has its own and very original model of an e-book reader called the Nook. Considering that Amazon has officially launched the 6-inch Kindle and the 9.7-inch Kindle DX readers in many countries of the world, other large publication houses may follow the suit. The QUE comes at a recommended price of $650 and $800 for the versions with and without a 3G module, respectively.
And finally, the most intriguing debut of the spring may prove to be the e-book reader Skiff with a plastic 11.5-inch E Ink display and a resolution of 1200x1600 pixels:
Skiff will have its plastic displays produced by LG Display, the number one player on the market of monitors. It means the production schedule should be followed closely, although the release date is not yet set. It will be somewhere in the first half of the year. The price is not announced yet, either. Considering the superior parameters of that model, the Skiff is unlikely to cost much below $1000 but LG’s displays are going to be the most reliable ones in their class due to the steel-foil frame integrated into the display wafer.
Like the Plastic Logic QUE, the Skiff will be equipped with Wi-Fi and 3G. The display is touch-sensitive (supports finger and stylus input). Interestingly, although the Skiff’s screen is larger by an inch, the dimensions and weight of the reader are almost unchanged. Moreover, the device is only 6.8 millimeters thick, its width and height measuring 228.6 x 279.4 millimeters. Its weight is 498 grams. The Skiff has a magnesium case, which makes it stylish and pompous. It is going to be a real aristocrat on the market of e-book readers. What is important, Skiff and its device are backed up by the publishing giant Hearst which has dozens of newspapers and almost two hundred magazines under its belt, including Cosmopolitan, Esquire and Popular Mechanics.