back to article Newspaper e-reader launched

Forget reading novels on your e-book viewer, because the first e-reader supposedly optimised for newspaper and magazine content has been unveiled. Skiff_01 Skiff is optimised for reading newspapers and magazines on The Skiff Reader has an 11.5in touchscreen with 1200 x 1600 resolution, allowing users to interact with …


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  1. Paul_Murphy

    Now that's a little more like it,

    Hopefully no DRM, or at least the ability to read various formats such as PDF and txt.

    It would be interesting to see if it can be used in one hand, and it does seem a little on the large side to use on the tube easily.

    Awaiting more details.


    1. Anonymous Coward

      one hand? ...

      ... please explain

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Nice, but...

    Clearly made by people from a backward country. Otherwise they would have given the display a 1:sqrt(2) aspect ratio. You know, so zooming works usefully and is compatible with the 95% of the world that has already converted to ``metric paper''.

    No word on formats; text, pdf, djvu?

  3. Sam Liddicott
    Thumb Up

    want one

    Want one. Now. With a pop-up-touch-screen-keyboard. And running debian/ubuntu/GNU/Mer/Linux/thingy. And WLAN. And yeah, GPRS.

    And a bluetooth headset. With voice dialling.

    Did I say now?

    And SD cards.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Availalbe now..

      You can get them now, I think they are called Laptops.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down


    Why have a cheap, lightweight, thin, foldable, colour newspaper when you can have something more expensive, heavier, thicker, only slightly bendy and monochrome? Sign me up!

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    How many years of newspapers could I buy for the price?

    And - of course - it folds up to go in your jacket pocket...?? For the time being at least, surely a solution to a problem that doesn't exist...

    1. BristolBachelor Gold badge

      Where I live

      In Madrid, an English newspaper, like the Mirror, Sun, Daily Mail etc. costs you close to 10€ a day, plus you have to go well out of your way to find it. You don't even want to know what it costs to get a monthly magazine here in English!

      If it could show colour pictures, and especially if I could keep and re-read the copies of monthly subscription magazines, I'd have one in a shot!

      1. garetht t

        Bachelor, eh?

        You've got to stop buying those 'specialist' magazines then.. : )

  6. uhuznaa
    Thumb Down


    11.5" is about one inch more than the Apple tablet (if it comes) which could be much more, even if it does just what the iPod touch does. I think those dedicated readers will either fail or will have to become really, really cheap.

    1. Matt 13

      yeah, but....

      take your ipad outside in the sun and try and read it - im expecting a huge fail. even the daylight screen on my toughbook struggles in really, really bright sun and I have to crank the backlight... which in turn eats the battery!

      I was so close to getting a Sony pocket just before christmas, but i think i may wait now! I like this reader, well, from the news article atleast... just make it sub 200 and able to read lots of formats and i may just get one...

      1. Maty

        no so

        Yeah, I had the same thoughts when I got my eReader ... except it ain't so. If this thingy also uses e-ink, it's like a conventional book and is easier to read in bright light. You're still thinking LCD technology.

  7. Andrew James

    audio reader?

    Why doesn't someone just find a way to get an internet enabled mp3 player, such as an ipod touch, for example, to read the content of a pdf file.

    Browsing the internet on the Touch you double tap a column of text and it zooms to fit the width of the screen - why not have it do that, and then start reading the content to you.

    Some people prefer to read, yes, and for those, there are such things as books and newspapers printed on paper, which as already mentioned above is thin, lightweight and folds down to fit into your pocket... and doesnt require a charged battery to turn the page.

  8. Astarte

    How flexible?

    I mean, can you hang it on a nail in the outside lavvy?

  9. Anonymous Coward

    Actually this has a good use

    Anyone think of large print books for those with vision problems? The smaller readers get ugly looking when the font size is boosted. If this can provide a cleaner display I'd consider one for my mother.

  10. David Halko

    Newspaper is almost dead - could be a way to resurrect them!

    The newspaper industry is almost dead, it seems. They are consolidating into larger entities that have declining readership.

    What they have not figured out - there is a reason why papers have different readership... it is because of the content. Consolidating the different papers into a unified paper, to save costs, wind up alienating the readership.

    If newspapers could find a way to distribute the content, without the printing & distribution costs, this could keep them from having to consolidate and lose readership... especially if they can see some reoccurring revenue from it. These readers may be the trick.

    Of course, someone astutely suggested that a laptop is the answer. I think that is the answer now, since they are much more portable than an old PC. It is still inconvenient to pick up off of a chair, plug it in, boot it up, supply a password, deal with virus software, software upgrades, crashes, etc. A laptop is just a nightmare, in comparison to an embedded system.

    A flat machine the same form factor (and weight) of a book is really what is needed - something you can easily turn on and off (proximity sensor, like an iPhone while on a call?) An inductive pad to charge through would be perfect. No connectors.

    Let's see if they do it right.

  11. Anonymous Coward

    The important question is...

    Does it make a cool "wobba wobba wobba" sound when you shake it by the edge?

  12. Captain Thyratron

    Marvellously, futuristically pointless, but possibly awesome for other applications.

    So it's flexible and capable of displaying text. Why, in another decade, it might approach a third the durability of paper at no more than fifty times the price. Huzzah!

    While I think the idea of replacing paper media with expensive digital imitations is fundamentally stupid, these guys have come up with some really awesome display technology. Imagine all the neat heads-up sort of displays you could make with a screen like that, or the kind of things you could put in a window. Even if what they're doing with it is dumb, they're being dumb in the most awesome, futuristic way they can.

  13. Douglas Fingles
    Paris Hilton

    The Really Important Question is...

    So, I get this electronic newspaper. I order my favorite, the intellectually stimulating Sun. Next morning I get my cuppa, check the front page, and wonder how do I open this thing up to page 3?

  14. John Smith 19 Gold badge
    Thumb Up


    A large size reader with decent display and the right *thickness*.

    How much performance does something like this *need*?

    How much will they charge for it? It's basically a passive storage and display device for content generated elsewhere. It's not worth more than £200.

    This is the form factor I want for a laptop.

    Pity it took 3 decades to get here.

  15. John Smith 19 Gold badge
    Thumb Up

    Found out a bit more.

    A bit more than 1/4" thick (how much more? 8mm is a bit, 12.5mm is near as damm it 1/2") and a 7 day life on a charge. If that's even 1/2 true that's pretty good.

    Still got pole position for a PDF reader.

  16. Barney Carroll

    gimmicky stepping-stone towards something useful

    Points against:

    • I don't particularly want to bend things that much, and I certainly don't want to risk breaking them. Folding is what makes newspapers convenient. Bending is an inconvenient side-effect. Silly gimmick.

    • How much of a variety of digital content will be regularly produced in formats this works well with? Because I don't want to read A4+ sheets of plain text. That would be tiresome and difficult. Step backward in versatility of medium.

    • Too big to dissimulate unobtrusively while probably not being useful for more than an hour a day for most people. Not good for travel. Step backward in portability.

    After a hundred such gimmicky little iterations in the world of ereaders hopefully we can get chromatic e-ink on a foldable (hinged) screen device that's thin enough to transport with touchscreen and internal gubbins powerful enough to run a proper variety of applications.

    Get me out of cryostasis when we can get coloured ink touch screen tablet PCs with decent processing and open OS.

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