A new eBook reader from start-up Interead has been announced in the States, and unlike Amazon's elusive Kindle devices, it has been confirmed as coming to the UK this month.
The COOL-ER has been described by an Interead exec as the "iPod moment" of ebook readers to US blog Engadget, which is an interesting comment, considering Amazon's Jeff Bezos said similar about the Kindle when that first launched, dubbing it the "iPod of reading".
Perhaps a more accurate prediction from the company behind the COOL-ER is that it could be the iPodmini
moment of e-reading as the device is smaller, cheaper and more colourful than what's on the market currently.
The COOL-ER offers a 500MHz processor, 128MB of RAM, 800 x 600 resolution, 6-inch E-Ink screen, 1GB storage expandable by SD card, (but only up to 4GB), battery life for 8000 page turns, support for JPEG, PDF, ePub and TXT formats and weighs in at just under 180 grams.
What it does not have is a keyboard, or any kind of wireless connectivity, not Wi-Fi and not the "Whispernet" tech the Kindle offers, so content has to be sideloaded from a Mac or a PC or loaded on SD cards.
Still, under the slogan "we make reading cool", the device goes on sale on 29 May for $249, at least $100 less than the Kindle, and in a heck of a lot more colours, which could make all the difference, especially to the yoof market that the Kindle has not managed to capture.
Here in the UK, the COOL-ER has been confirmed as going on sale (and head to head with Sony's Reader) for £189 from the 27 May via Interead's online store.