When the French ereader maker Bookeen first announced their 8" ebook reader 6 months ago few imagined that it would be in the running for the most delayed gadget of 2013.
The Cybook Ocean, which was supposed to ship in November 2013 before being delayed until the first quarter of 2014, is now expected to ship in May or June of this year. According to the latest news on the Bookeen blog, it's going to cost 179 euros when it arrives.
This ebook reader is equipped with an 8" epaper screen. It's running Bookeen's proprietary OS on an 800MHz CPU with 256MB RAM, 4GB Flash storage, Wifi, and a microSD card slot. Screen resolution is a decent but not impressive 1024 x 768, and the Cybook Ocean has both a frontlight and a touchscreen.
The Cybook Ocean is going to be shown off to the public at the Paris Book Fair, which kicks off on 20 March 2014. This will be the world premiere of the Cybook Ocean, and Bookeen will have it on display in their booth so it can be fondled by visitors.
An eight inch screen is unusual for ebook readers, and only a handful of models have one. There's the Pocketbook Color Lux, which has a color E-ink screen, and there's the Onyx Boox i86, which has a very high resolution screen.
The Cybook Ocean has a much lower resolution screen than the screen on the not-yet-released Onyx Boox i86, which will have a screen resolution of 1,600 x 1,200. While the sharp distinct in resolution might sound odd, there's a simple explanation.
The i86 is using an epaper screen produced by E-ink, while the Cybook Ocean is using a screen developed by Ganzhou OED Technologies. This company is jokingly referred to as producing knockoff screens, though of course it's not clear to an outsider whether that is true or not. All we know is that the screen from E-ink and Ganzhou OED look very similar to the naked eye.