Sony Reader Wifi Updated – Hacks Affected (Fixed)

Sony has released an update for the Sony Reader Wifi today. It’s the first major update that this 3 month old ebook reader has seen, and it fixes a couple minor nuisances.

A lot of owners have reported that the touchscreen can be wonky. It can turn the page without you actually touching it (I’ve seen it). That is one of the fixes. Here’s the full list:

  • Improved touch panel functionality
  • Improved stability when searching the dictionary
  • An Internet connectivity problem which only appears under certain conditions is fixed.
  • Improved DRM contents compatibility

I’ve just downloaded and installed the update. The update itself was a 103MB install file for Windows (no OSX support). Since I have a hacked Sony Reader Wifi, I’m not completely sure what’s going to happen. I don’t see any warnings about wiped content or other risks, so i decided to give it a shot.

And now that the update is done, I can report that it did not affect the hacks. My Sony Reader Wifi is still a 6″ Android tablet. Both the Kindle app and the CoolReader app work just fine.

Update: It looks like I spoke too soon. The hack is somewhat borked. The web browser doesn’t quite work right and won’t let me download apk files. The settings menu won’t let me uninstall files either. I’m going to go try to reinstall the hack. Don’t touch the update  if you have a hacked Sony Reader.

Second Update: It’s working again. I had to regress back to the 1.0.02 restore file I found here using the same instructions found here. I then reinstalled one of the hacked firmwares and I am in the process of reinstalling apps. The Amazon Appstore is already running. But I’ve since run out of space for other apps, dammit.

Final Update:  Porkupan has since told me that the hack should not have been affected by the update. In any case, he’s released a new hack and restore files for the update.

I’m really grateful for Sony taking the time to not kill the hack. Unlike B&N, who released an update for the Nook Touch that wiped broke an existing hack, Sony clearly isn’t going to get in the way of the more ambitious users. That makes the Sony Reader Wifi all that much more valuable, IMO.


Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills weekly. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.


  1. Thawatchai Ch on Facebook9 December, 2011

    Just follow the hack from this link step 1-4 for my Sony Reader Wifi

    But nothing happen or reboot. Please advise. Thanks

  2. john9 December, 2011

    any chance “Improved DRM contents compatibility” means B&N DRM access? separately, anyone know if the B&N app works once the Sony reader is hacked? thanks

    1. Nate Hoffelder9 December, 2011

      Okay, I’ve just found a problem. The update borked the setting menu. I can’t uninstall apps, which means I don’t have enough room.

      I’m also having trouble downloading the install file.

      1. fjtorres9 December, 2011

        I finally move off the dime in my quest for an eink Android webpad and even before I take delivery, an update messes with the hack.
        A reader firmware update? From Sony? What is this world coming to?

        Hopefully the hack will install atop a clean updated reader.
        Or a new hack will be forthcoming.

        1. Nate Hoffelder9 December, 2011

          Hey, at least it didn’t wipe the hack entirely and block it, too. It still mostly worked.

          1. fjtorres9 December, 2011

            Oh, I understand it was just an accidental stomping.
            After all, they were mostly fixing their reading app.
            And its probably further proof that B&N is going out of their way to fight hacks.
            That was the deciding factor for me; if I’m dropping a c-note on a toy I don’t need, just to hack it, I’d rather not be fighting the manufacturer to get it to stay hacked.

          2. fjtorres9 December, 2011

            BTW, which Sony hack are you running?
            I’m interested in a minimalist one, myself; just enough to let me add my choice of apps.
            You seem happy with yours so I figure I’ll crib off you. 🙂

            1. Nate Hoffelder9 December, 2011

              I had the first minimalist hack that allowed for installing apps. Unfortunately, it’s not offered any more.

  3. seapea9 December, 2011

    It’s weird but the experience I had with updating my rooted Nook Touch with the 1.1.0 update didn’t cause any problems. I was expecting the hack to get wiped after reading your posts Nate, but it didn’t. The hack continued working w/o problem when I updated 1.0.1 to 1.1.0.

    Now my problem is this Sony update for the PRS-T1, I’m on Linux and haven’t quite figured out how to get this update installed on my PRS-T1. I tried running the windows .exe under Wine but it frozen/hung just after extracting the files. It would be nice if Sony released a zip file, like Barnes Noble, which could be copied onto the device; that’s seems really easy to do from any OS. So far my initial internet search hasn’t found any solutions but it appears I’m not the only one with this problem.

    1. Nate Hoffelder9 December, 2011

      My mistake. I’d been half following Mike Cane as he tracked the progress of hacking the Touch 1.1 firmware. Clearly I need to go look at it again.

      1. Mike Cane13 December, 2011

        There are now FOUR methods for rooting the 1.1 Nook Touch. Not every method works for everyone, which is odd. Something about the way B&N’s update changed how hacking opens up access to the Android market. Apparently something at startup now prevents a hack that also has to run at startup from happening. Nevertheless, the 1.1 can be hacked and it’s still one of the most popular search terms that leads to my blog daily. B&N must be selling a ton of these just for people who want to hack it for Android. And once hacked, it can do a hell of a lot more than the Sony Reader can, it seems to me.

  4. Tony14 December, 2011

    Conclusion: the hack does not work with 1.0.03, right?

    you talk about going back to 1.0.02 then hacking, there’s no mention you went up to .03 afterwards;

    could you please clarify?

    1. Nate Hoffelder14 December, 2011

      Actually, pokupan says it should have worked with 1.0.3 (mine may not have worked because I’ve done funky things). He also released a new hack which will work on 1.0.3.

      1. Tony14 December, 2011

        ah superb, thanks Nate;

        well, good for sony actually;

  5. […] Wifi shipped, and today it got an update. This is the second update for this ereader, and thanks to my experiences last time I don’t plan to install this one.Here’s the list of improvements:Improvements over […]


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