Sharp enters booming e-reader market

Takes on the combined might of Amazon, Sony and Apple

Sharp enters the e reader fray later in 2010

Japan's Sharp Corp has indicated that it plans to enter the booming electronic reader market.

E-readers and e-books have gained a considerable amount of positive PR in recent months, following the launch of Apple's iPad and Amazon's Kindle apps for devices including the iPhone, Android and iPad.

E-books versus print

Many industry commentators and analysts are predicting that sales of e-books will outstrip sales of ALL printed books within the next five to ten years.

Sharp is planning on developing its own e-book distribution service to compete with Amazon.com and Apple's iBooks, in addition to a range of compatible e-book devices later in 2010.

Sharp's new e-books will feature video playback and audio features, although details on exact plans and device specs are scarce right now. TechRadar has put a call in to Sharp's UK office for further information on the new e-reader plans.

Sharp has said that it already has the backing of a number of publishers in Japan and worldwide. Again, no further details on which publishers are backing the initiative have yet been made public.

Apple iPad launched in the US back in April and in the UK in May.

Google also has plans to launch a new e-book service at some point soon.

Via Reuters