Hanvon E-reader Used in Space
The new electronic reader Hanvon N510 was used by the crew of the recent Shenzhou-7 orbital flight to take notes, read books and listen to recordings state recent reports.
Hanvon Technology claims the world's first 5" Electronic Book series, which is based on the revolutionary E Ink Vizplex Display. The development team says that the N510 consumes very little power, has a paper like appearance, offers 180 degrees viewing and is only 11mm thick. The e-reader supports TXT, HTML, PNG, JPG, PDF, XEB, CEB, MP3, MTXT formats on its 167 PPI, SVGA (800 x 600 pixels) electronic paper display. It also features a 1GB SD card and a mini USB port.
Designed for outdoor use, the N510 features a sunlight readable electronic paper display in a rugged yet slim package. The high definition display not only has a paper like appearance, it has no EMI generating backlight/inverter making it ideally suited for hours of reading.
It is designed to allow the user to not only read books but also input notes, edit and even paint electronically using Hanvon's advanced digital input technologies. The device also features audio listening capability with MP3 support.
Priced at about 2000RMB ($295 approx), the ereader is aimed at users that want the flexibility and convenience of having hundreds of books and documents at their finger tips, at a reasonable price. Finally it is an environmentally responsible alternative to ordinary paper.
One of the greatest challenges that e-books are facing today is the challenge to the traditional habit of reading books. Such a tradition is deep-rooted and has lasted for thousands of years and will be difficult to change. But with more e-books becoming available we may see traditional and electronic books co-exist for a long period of time.
Since 2007 we have seen e-readers come to market from Sony with the PRS-505, Amazon's Kindle and iRex Technologies with the iRex 1000 series. Others in the pipeline include LG.Philips LCD, Korea who have a flexible e-reader. Plastic Logic will sell their device in 2009 and Brother Industries Japan has developed an A5 e-reader which will be available in 2010.
Electronic paper displays are also being used on cell phones and at supermarkets as shelf edge labels for prices.
By Teresa Henry