by Jin S. Kim
Press Conference According to rumors, Amazon will announce on Wednesday a much larger Kindle called the Kindle DX. The press conference will be held on Wednesday, May 6 at 10:30am EDT at Pace University, the historic 19th century headquarters to the New York Times.
9.7″ Big The Kindle DX will sport a 9.7″ E Ink display. That’s 3.7″ larger than the current Kindle 2.0. With the larger display the number of pixels will certainly grow, but I don’t have a clue as to how many. The larger Kindle DX will certainly be catering to users that want to read textbooks and newspapers on their Kindles. Are you a student? Whether you’re in high school or in college you’re probably lugging a lot of books around and having to choose which books to actually take to school. Aren’t the books big too? And expensive? I’m not sure if the Kindle DX will help in the price department all that much but it certainly will significantly lighten your load. Your back will thank you too. There will certainly be a DRM feature so you can’t share your $100 calculus textbook with your friend. I wouldn’t be surprised if several textbook publishers announce electronic versions that will be available to the Kindle DX.
PDF One nifty feature of the Kindle DX will be a feature that current Kindle owners have long been asking for: a built-in PDF reader. What does this mean for you? As long as you have a PDF printer installed on your computer you can ‘print’ webpages, Word documents, etc. into a PDF document. And the Kindle DX will be able to display it. Very cool that should have been in the very first Kindle. I’m glad Amazon finally got it.
NYT The New York Times will supposedly offer a $9.95/mo subscription for the Kindle DX. That’s a bit cheaper than the paper version of $13.99/mo. The electronic version will also help save some trees and a lot on distribution costs: no paperboys having to throw the newspapers at you if you happen to be awake that early in the morning and sipping coffee right in front of your front door.
The market for ebook readers is heating up. Hearst announced that it is working on an ebook reader that will replace the newspaper and have enough space for ads, a major revenue source for newspapers. Also a Wall Street Journal article reports that several publishing industry executives are establishing a group to set their own subscription rates and not leave that up to a middeman such as Amazon. There is also the rumor that Apple might be readying a netbook of its own that could easily eat into the ebook reader market if the display is good enough and the battery lasts long enough. I think Apple is working on a 10″ ultrawide netbook and will call it the iBook. Just like Steve, the iBook will return after a hiatus.