E-BOOKS GET BOOST

By: Staff Reports

Devices Carry Major Periodicals



Thomson Multimedia (not affiliated with Thomson Corp. of Toronto) announced plans to
distribute tens of millions of e-book devices into consumers’ homes with the goal of
making the devices the preferred choice for reading novels and periodicals, including
newspapers.



The company has partnered with Gemstar International Group Ltd., the Pasadena,
Calif.-based technology company that earlier this year acquired SoftBook Press, maker
of the SoftBook Reader, and NuvoMedia Inc., maker of the Rocket eBook.


New versions of the Softbook Reader and the Rocket eBook will be jointly developed by
Thomson and Gemstar. The Rocket eBook is a paper-back sized reader with a 5.6′ diagonal
high-resolution monochrome back-lit touch screen that weighs less than one pound. Its
built-in lithium batrtery offers 15 to 35 hours of continuous reading and stores dozens
of books.


The Softbook Reader is a higher-end model that weighs in at two pounds with an 8.2′
diagonal, full-color LCD screen. It handles text formats such as magazines, textbooks,
and novels.


Gemstar already distributes e-book content from The New York Times, The Wall Street
Journal, The Washington Post, Time, Newsweek, and The Industry Standard.



Under the agreement, Thomson will license e-book technology while Gemstar will operate a
secure distribution system for the sale and delivery of e-book content. Thomson will get
a share of the revenues generated from content sales.


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Staff reports













(c) Copyright 2000, Editor & Publisher

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