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Iota Reader Now Shipping in Georgia

I was going through my todo pile this morning when I came across an old story I never wrote, and it covered an ereader being launched in Georgia.

It seems that back in October 2011 I found a news story which discussed the Iota Reader, which was about to launch there. I probably held the story because I wanted to find out more about the device and service. (And then I forgot it.)

This ereader and the service supporting it is still worth a look, even 7 months later. Locally driven efforts to build an ebook market are always interesting.

I’m rather hampered by translation difficulties, but I have found some details.

The Iota Reader and its supporting ebookstore ( were launched late last year by LTD Literacy. This company is a subsidiary of UGT (a Georgia tech company) as well as part owned by, a Georgian writer’s forum with over a thousand authors and 11 thousand members. As you can probably guess from the parentage, this is part of a larger effort to grow the local ebook market by convincing local authors to allow ebooks while also trying to get more ereaders into the hands of readers.

According to one of my sources, is using a custom DRM wrapped around standard Epub files. It sounds like it’s not Adobe, though that is not clear. The ebookstore currently stocks (I believe) 228 local in copyright titles as well as olderĀ Georgian works which have fallen into the public domain, translations, and international titles.

The Iota Reader is a rebranded Onyx Boox. I’m not certain which model it’s based on, but it is likely the latest edition. It’s based around a 6″ E-ink screen and it is runningĀ  Linux on an 800 MHz Marvell CPU with a Wacom touchscreen, Wifi, SD card slot, and 4GB Flash storage.

It has of course been customized for the local market with new menus, help pages on the website, and so on. You can buy it on for 239 Georgian Lari ( ~$147 USD).


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