Sony set to reveal next-gen Reader ebooks

Sony set to announce its new range of next-gen e-book Readers at IFA this week
Sony set to announce its new range of next-gen e-book Readers at IFA this week

Sony is set to reveal its next-generation range of Reader e-books at IFA in Berlin later this week.

Sony's new electronic readers are set to be slimmer than previous models, with a range of new features, including touchscreen control.

We expect to get some hands on time with the three new versions of the Sony Reader set to be revealed at IFA, with Sony claiming that it has made improvements to the screen to offer better clarity for readers.

Dictionaries, reader reviews, mobile apps

While Sony was first to market with its e-book range, it is now facing stiff competition from market leader Amazon, whose new Kindle e-reader recently launched in the UK, at £109 for the basic Wi-Fi only version.

Apple is also making serious inroads into the e-book market with the iPad, with apps such as iBooks (and Amazon's own Kindle app) proving to be popular on Apple's new tablet device.

Steve Haber, president of Sony's digital reading unit, told Reuters: "Lowering prices to get cheaper and cheaper -- that's not our direction. Our plan is not to race to the bottom."

Haber noted that Sony sold more of its higher-priced touchscreen Reader last Christmas than it did the cheaper, non-touchscreen version.

"People stepped up and spent another $100 to buy touch," said the Sony Reader boss.

Sony's new pocket version Reader will retail about $179 (£116) in the US, while Sony's larger 6-inch screen version with extra memory will cost US readers $229 (£149).

Sony is also planning to launch a $299.99 (£195) "Daily Edition" Reader later in November, which will feature 3G connectivity and a larger screen.

Sony will also offer dictionaries in its new Readers and, in addition to adding new titles to its e-book store, plans to include reader reviews via a partnership with social network site GoodReads.

Sony will also launch iPhone and Android Reader applications later in the year.

Via Reuters

Adam Hartley