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teXet just set a new lower standard for e-readers

This is the second ebook reader that teXet unveiled this week, and this one would best be described as "why did they bother."

It’s built around a low resolution 4.3″ LCD screen (480×272). I have those number’s right; the screen is a generation out of date; you can’t find screens with that resolution anywhere but cheap portable DVD players these days.

But aside from the screen, it’s not bad. It comes with a touchscreen, 4GB Flash storage, a microSD card slot, as well as broad audio, video, and ebook format support.  It also ships with a number of apps including a calendar, voice recorder, dictionaries, and a radio. It not clear that the teXet TB-431HD has a microphone or speakers, so the last 2 features will probably require a cable of some kind.

Retail is 2499 rubles (~$89 USD).


P.S. This post is a test of my new URL shortener. Let’s see if this works.

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fjtorres July 16, 2011 um 10:48 am

Actually, if the battery holds up and the software supported B&N DRM–which I doubt it ever will–it would be a great kid’s media player/reader.
Veterans of the PDA age of ebooks can attest to the fact that with proper software a 4in QVGA display can offer a good reading experience, so there is nothing inherently wrong with the concept. A well-chosen font, sub-pixel antialiasing, and a good rendering engine can make even 100 dpi text easy on the eyes as MS Reader proved ages ago. Consider that the first gen enk readers ran 167 dpi text with no anti-aliasing and 130 dpi shouldn’t be necessarily be an issue.
Now, I’m assuming the quoted price is list and street price will be closer to US$69, which would put it squarely in V-Tech territory.
As is, if you put it in a blister pack at Walgreens or CVS and bundle a couple hundred kids' classics, it’ll outsell Sony. 😉

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