CES was a hotbed for new e-Reader announcements. E-readers announced at the show demonstrate manufacturers’ desire to drive these devices to include smartphone-like features such as the Android OS, touch-capable screens and enablement of rich content and applications. There is a clear trend toward including seamless, 3G connectivity — to give consumers the ability to download content wherever and whenever they desire. Perhaps taking a cue from the iPhone’s success, manufacturers are also focusing on dynamic content such as browsers, video, color pictures, music and third party apps to capture mainstream users.
Additionally, improvements in hardware and software capabilities are opening up competition and the possibility of new business models. Discussions are beginning to surface around content and platform providers exploring how to leverage advertising revenues.
ARM was the overwhelming choice for application processors in new e-Reader designs at CES. Qualcomm’s mirasol® display technology promises to provide a superior display option as compared to dual displays due to its ability to support media-rich and dynamic content with a single, lightweight, low-cost and power-efficient display.
By the looks of it though, the consumer is the real winner, responding strongly to this new generation of e-Readers with heavy foot traffic at manufacturers’ booths.