Tuesday, February 06, 2007

This book can get excited!

Polymer Vision, a Phillips spin-off appears to be making fast work of bring its new screen technology to market this year. We have already reported (see day at the races 22n December)on this new and exciting OLED (Organic Light- Emitting Diodes) foldable display technology and its significant potential to revolutionize the eBook market and reading. The company now looks set to officially unveil the first product to use the would-be paper killer technology at next week's 3GSM conference in Spain. Watch the newspaper coverage as it impacts them too!

The "Cellular-Book," will initially be offered by Telecom Italia for its cellular market. The main attraction is a roll-able, foldable display, which can extend to a full five inches yet still wrap up into a device "smaller than the typical mobile phone." There will be no doubt loads of jokes about its ability to grow! The cellular part of the equation comes in the form of a combination of EDGE, UMTS, and DVB-H capabilities, which will give you access to an array of different services viewable in 16 levels of gray, including e-mail. RSS feeds and, of course, e-books, which will be available through Telecom Italia.

All the usual gadgets will be there on the device with the ability download to the device music and podcasts and with 4GB of storage provided it should satisfy most media appetites.

So the iphone will have a competitor and new screen technology is almost here. What is more relevant is the continued march towards convergence and the ubiquitous mobile. Manufactures know that the volume is in the mobile market and it makes little sense to develop single application devices to satisfy a relatively small market. So we now have music, podcasts, audio, video, photos, maps, internet access, text, email, VOIP, games and telephone calls all in one. We have the online services to feed them stuff and they are growing in their storage capacity. I think the inevitable is obvious and we shall soon see a number of old ebook readers for sale on eBay.