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Thread: News - Elonex and Borders UK launch eBook

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    News - Elonex and Borders UK launch eBook

    With Amazon?s Kindle still only available in the US, UK vendor Elonex seizes the moment.
    Read more.

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    Re: News - Elonex and Borders UK launch eBook

    Finally someone willing to take this on in the UK

    I still prefer to have the paper based book in front of me but after using a few of these ebook readers at work the screens are great on them and I don't think you would suffer any problems reading these for hours on end as you would any paper based book. Although I do notice that this one seems to have a different screen on it and the black text on a bright white background could be an issue for prolonged reading, the sony one we got through work for staff has a grey screen and black text and its a lot nicer on the eye.

    I do think though that the price need to drop a little in order for them to sell but then again those in my local borders seem to splash the cash.

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    Re: News - Elonex and Borders UK launch eBook

    I think these are one of the best creations really, they are important to schools because it can save crap loads of money. My school(sixth form) cant afford to give us text books any more, they spent it all! So imagine having one of these, initially its a bit expensive but after a few years its easy to update to new books and alot cheaper.
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    Re: News - Elonex and Borders UK launch eBook

    100 free ebooks does make a huge step to accepting the hefty price tag. Looking at the borders site ebooks seem to be £7-8 so effectively they are giving you about 4x the cost in free books.

    The question remains though, how many ebooks will they be able to provide that I (or anyone) might be interested in reading.... A quick flick through the sci fi and fantasy section shows a couple of dozen books, many of which are old (and some bizarrely priced)... This is not something i am holding against borders, its up to the publishing houses to get their act in order and start to really push ebooks.

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    Re: News - Elonex and Borders UK launch eBook

    Give me the power of a netbook in the size of an eReader, and i'll be a happy bunny

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    Re: News - Elonex and Borders UK launch eBook

    Here's my problem .... or part of it.

    Borders ebooks don't seem to gave a vast stock. The Sci_fi and Fantasy range, for instance, is poor.

    But more than that

    Code:
    Some Terry Pratchett titles:
    
    
    Title                Borders ebook      Amazon print book        eBook Premium
    
    Wintersmith            £14.99                £4.99                £10.00
    Reaper Man              £7.99                £5.49                 £2.50
    Fifth Elephant          £7.99                £5.49                 £2.50
    Even Borders do Wintersmith at £5.24, Reaper Man and Fifth Elephant at £5.99 each.

    Given that print books have to be more expensive to produce, transport and stock than an eBook download, I can only conclude :-

    1) Borders believe there is some significat benefot to the eBook over the print version that justifies the price, or

    2) They're milking it for all it's worth.


    There are, clearly, advantages to an eBook, one of which is carrying large numbers of books around in one device. Fair enough. But worth that premium. Not to me.

    And then there's the killer. Paying the best part of £200 for a device to read eBooks I have to pay a significant premium to buy? Not hope in hell of me doing that.


    So, yes, the eBook reader principle appeals, but until (and if) the readers drop in price a LOT, and the eBooks themselves are much, much cheaper, it's not a technology I'll be buying into. As for the free 100 books, well, I want to see a list of exactly what they are. I'd bet that most, or all, will represent exactly zero interest to me.

    eBooks and eReaders may well be how the future looks, but they've got quite a way to go before they'll get me buying one.

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    Re: News - Elonex and Borders UK launch eBook

    Saracen, i see your point (i agree) but its one of those arguments where it never gets justified and steam is a prime example, they charge(generally) more than a boxed version of a game now hosting a file costs a lot less than making loads of prints etc.. and yet it doesn't change.

    I think perhaps it will change when there's an increase in demand but there lies the problem, no good prices=poor demand but companies don't want to charge less if there is so few buying them.
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    Re: News - Elonex and Borders UK launch eBook

    Quote Originally Posted by Hicks12 View Post
    Saracen, i see your point (i agree) but its one of those arguments where it never gets justified and steam is a prime example, they charge(generally) more than a boxed version of a game now hosting a file costs a lot less than making loads of prints etc.. and yet it doesn't change.

    I think perhaps it will change when there's an increase in demand but there lies the problem, no good prices=poor demand but companies don't want to charge less if there is so few buying them.
    I tend to find games on Steam cheaper than boxed alternatives.

    Also if that 100 free ebooks was a voucher, and you could simply grab an ebook whenever you wanted and it takes 1 from your 100, then it would be fine, as you can simply get a few now, and get a new one every time they release an ebook you want.

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    Re: News - Elonex and Borders UK launch eBook

    I really, really want to like these things but at the moment they just suck in too many ways. As Saracen pointed out, as long as eBooks cost as much as (in many cases more than) real books there's no way the readers are worthwhile.

    As for schools, has anyone seen a well-used school textbook recently? When I was at school they took a hell of a beating. Fragile electronic devices like eBook readers aren't going to last long in a school environment. You don't just sit them on desks in a special room like you do with PCs.

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    Re: News - Elonex and Borders UK launch eBook

    Quote Originally Posted by Arthran View Post
    I tend to find games on Steam cheaper than boxed alternatives.

    Also if that 100 free ebooks was a voucher, and you could simply grab an ebook whenever you wanted and it takes 1 from your 100, then it would be fine, as you can simply get a few now, and get a new one every time they release an ebook you want.
    That might do it, but another concern I have would be DRM. I would want to be absolutely sure that whatever I bought stayed bought, and that I could move it on and off the reader as I desired, and transfer it to a different reader if/when I upgraded hardware, and not have to rely on Steam-type authentication servers to do it. After all, I can pick a print book of my bookshelf and take it with me on a trip without having to get the publisher's sign-off on it, and I expect the same from an eBook.

    Can I do that with a particular flavour of eBook? I don't know, and haven't yet found any clear answers. As with software, I'm all in favour if DRM stopping piracy, provided I, as a genuine buyer, am not made to jump through hoops and inconvenienced as a result. That's one of the reasons why I won't use Steam.

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    Re: News - Elonex and Borders UK launch eBook

    offtopic i know, but i completely disagree with you on steam. I find their auth servers and their download system to be a godsend.
    Re-install your pc and all you need to do is re-download steam, tell it which games you want back down on your pc and leave overnight. Simplicity itself.

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    Re: News - Elonex and Borders UK launch eBook

    Each to his own, I guess. You'll find my reasoning on Steam at some length in the gaming forums, but among the reasons for refusing to use Steam, are :-

    - my gaming PCs aren't online ,and I don't want them online. I have zero interest in internet gaming.

    - economic times are hard and large and well-known companies are goingto the wall. What happens to your games if Steam do?

    They're not the only reasons, but even those would be enough for me. The same logic applies to eBook DRM. I don't object to DRM in principle, provided it doesn't make life too hard for me. If it does, I'll do without the DRM'd product altogether rather than use it. There are some things, to paraphrase Churchill, "Up with which I will not put".

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    Re: News - Elonex and Borders UK launch eBook

    i would love them to actually have some damn common sense with how they are doing this. The internal bitch fighting is really hurting things for all concerned.

    An intresting story is Sony's SonicStage software, the biggest peice of crap that stifled technology that was in many ways far ahead of anything we've seen in terms of creativity (NetMDs). It was code named Harmony or Symphony or something because it was ment to bring the two sides of the company (walkman and records) to a more than amacable compromise.

    Instead they cripped it, and it died off.

    This is the same thing, the book guys need to realise a large portion of their sales might be dieing. Take specalist books, books that aren't ready much. These should be amazingly cheaper on eBook format, with a catalogue that you can't even compete at with the waterstones in piccadilly (ment to be largest in europe!).

    As soon as they properly address that, they will be on to a winner. DRM will always be broken, its not a trusted platform. So why not be a bit more creative? 90% of the population won't know how to re-encode a PDF say, so stick the FULL NAME of the person who bought it, including their address on the front page of the eBook with a sort of personalised cover note. That will stop the person sharing it with people they don't know or trust or wouldn't of lent the book to in the first place. Offer a good referal scheme (get 5 friends to buy a ebook, free ebook for you!).
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    Re: News - Elonex and Borders UK launch eBook

    Much too expensive and fragile looking!

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    Re: News - Elonex and Borders UK launch eBook

    I have finally got hands on with this device at a local borders store. Sorry to put all those wanting to select your 100 ebooks down a little but its just a pre-selected set of 100 classics, pretty much the same list as the DS cart that was released.

    The device itself is light in weight but made of a sturdy brushed black aluminium with a bit of plastic on it. It loads fast and you can stick another SD card in there to carry more around with you. However, the big downside is the screen. When you load a book it loads into the biggest font available and you can then shrink it down to a normal book sized font with the buttons on the side. This is where the problem hits, the screen is so slow in refreshing itself from the larger font, every time you go up or down one level you get ghosting of the previous text that took almost 5 minutes for it to disappear.

    Other than that, the price of the ebooks themselves at borders are shocking and cost more than the paperback versions of the same books. However the guy that was showing me the unit said currently a few cities have download as you go service in border stores so you buy it and download it there and then in store over the stores wifi. If it takes off he said the ebooks will come down in price etc The guy wasn't trying to sell me it either as he said no matter what the price was he would always use books as we know them in their paper form.

    He did let slip that if the sales do well (They had sold 53 of them in 2 days) by the time October lands they should drop to around the £100 mark.

    Other than that I was impressed with it, but the Sony model we have at work for staff has the better screen and no issue's with ghosting.

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