Over the weekend I read a rumor that the Chinese ereader developer Onyx was going to upgrade their 6″ ereaders to use the new, high resolution, E-ink screen that LG Display debuted just over a month ago. While I haven’t managed to get solid info on price or ship date, I have gotten confirmation from a source that the rumor is indeed true.
Onyx is joining Wexler (early prototype), Hanvon, and Next Papyrus (and probably other companies) in working with the latest not yet released E-ink screen. This is the screen that generated a lot of buzz about a month ago. It has the same high resolution found on the iriver Story HD (1024×768), and it goes one better.
This screen is going to be more durable than any previously released E-ink screen (proof) because it replaces the glass backplane used in E-ink screens on the Kindle, Nook, and others, with a plastic backplane. That’s going to make the screen much less likely to die from getting hit or twisted, which is the leading cause of unexplained E-ink screen deaths. Click here if you need a more in depth explanation of how the screen is attached to the backplane.
According to my original source, the new Onyx ereaders will have much the same specs as the current models. I’m told that at least one will look like the existing Onyx Boox A62, which runs a custom Linux on an 800MHz Freescale CPU. According to my confirming source, Onyx also plans to use the screen in the new touchscreen equipped Boox i62, which I first showed you last October.
There’s no word on how much these ereaders will cost, but the upgraded A62 is supposed to hit the Russian market this month. I think that might be a little optimistic; there are reports that Wexler bought out the entire first production run for the new screen. If that’s true then I don’t think anyone else will get it, possibly not even LG’s own ereader maker (launched in partnership with iriver).