Sony eBook Reader Checks Out Library Books


Taking on the Kindle is about more than just offering an alternative e-book reader for Sony, with the company offering a new server that will increase access to content without any additional cost.

Sony yesterday rolled out a new line of e-book readers, unveiling its $399 Reader Daily edition that comes equipped with free 3G connectivity. The aluminum body device with integrated cover can store up to 1,000 standard e-books and touts a 7-inch wide touchscreen.

Additionally, the electronics manufacturer partnered with OverDrive, a global distributor of eBooks and audio books, to let readers download library books directly to the eBook reader. The partnership allows any Reader Daily user with a valid library card to browse through a library's Website and check out an eBook. The content is downloaded directly to Sony's reader and then expires at the end of the rental period.

Not only does the Reader Daily put library content at the finger tips of its users, but Sony has also made the decision to allow users to access the controversial Google Books Project, with access to over a million books available in the public domain.

The goal for Sony and the Reader Daily appears to be to get as much content into the hands of its customers as quickly and as easily as possible, putting it in a position to compete with Amazon's Kindle.

And in the case of accessing OverDrive's access to library books that can be digitally checked out, it appears that Sony has the upper hand over the Kindle. While it appears that the Kindle does have the ability to checkout eBooks from libraries, many users seem confused by exactly how that content can be downloaded.

Sony is making it simple for users to digitally checkout books and not worry about an expiration date or late fees.

In addition to the Reader Daily, Sony unveiled two other eBook readers earlier this month, the Reader Pocket Edition and the Reader Touch Edition which retail for $199 and $299 respectively and are currently available. The Reader Daily will start at $399 and be available in December.