Are There More New eReaders Coming From Sony?


Sony Reader PRS-T1

The big news yesterday was that Sony started taking pre-orders for the new Reader Wi-Fi and also put out brand new desktop software for PC and Mac computers.

In doing those stories, I noticed something on Sony’s website that indicates more ereaders could potentially be coming in the near future.

A lot of folks are disappointed that Sony has seemingly axed their 5-inch and 7-inch models. Why Sony doesn’t at least continue to sell them along with the new Reader Wi-Fi is anyone’s guess. But there is still hope that Sony could release another new ereader or two by the end of the year. After all, that’s exactly what they did last year. They released the PRS-650 and PRS-350 together and then released the PRS-950 a couple of months later.

Sony’s website gives a clue that another ereader could be coming, either that or it’s just an oversight (given Sony’s history that is very possible, their website is frequently ridden with factual errors and mistakes).

Here’s the clue: take a look a Sony’s new website layout for their eReader page. First off, the new layout is a major improvement over the old Flash-ridden page that took 15 seconds to load even with high speed internet.

Take a look at the left nav. If Sony only intends to release one model of ereader this year, then why is their a section titled “models”? Why would they use plural when there is only one model? It’s a pretty subtle detail, but still, if there is only going to be one model why would the s even be there. Plus, there’s a link on the upper right that says “Shop All E-Readers”. Clicking it just directs to the Reader Wi-Fi page—seems kind of pointless and redundant with just one model.

You could argue that these are just elements of a template, but pretty much the only other page with a similar layout is the tablets page. And that still doesn’t explain why they would use the word models instead of model.

Given Sony’s past releases, it’s wouldn’t be a stretch for them to offer a premium ereader as well. The new Reader Wi-Fi does a good job of bringing Sony’s solid set of features to the same price level as all the other major players, but Sony usually offers a more expensive, higher quality option too. Given that, a Sony Reader with a larger screen and 3G wireless could still be a possibility.

After all, Sony probably really had to push to get the Reader Wi-Fi out in time for the big Harry Potter website launch, Pottermore, which looks to be a big marketing tie-in for Sony’s ereaders. It’s no coincidence that Pottermore officially launches at the same time the Reader Wi-Fi hits shelves.

7 Responses to “Are There More New eReaders Coming From Sony?”

  1. I thought there would be another one for the simple fact I see little reason for including the name “WiFi” in the name of your only eReader.

    • I talked about a premium model in the article with 3G wireless, but they could go the budget route too, make a 5″ model without WiFi. Given the PRS-T1 has WiFi and a 6-inch screen and costs $149, they could get a 5-inch model without WiFi and possibly without the memory card slot down to nearly $100, maybe $115. That could be really popular too. I don’t know . . . maybe they are just going to settle with one model this year and focus on expanding their market and ebookstore.

  2. I’d be happy to have a premium 7″ reader back in the lineup! Even if the casing were the new plastic instead of the gorgeous brushed aluminum.

    So I will cross my fingers!

  3. I agree with Cynthia, I would love some speed in my 7 inch 950 as well as some tweaks to the browser. I’m finding more value in the wireless with Internet access than the e-book downloading. The Twitter access is great, it’s just a pain when you can’t read the underlying web page due to scrolling and wrapping issues.

  4. I’d love to have a wireless 5 inch. Don’t need to have memory cards though. It is not just a question of price. The tiny size is really convenient to carry inside any jacket pocket.

  5. Yesterday evening (Saturday 17th Sept) the Sony UK site showed the PRS-T1 on (pre-order for £129 (inc. VAT)). I phoned the Leeds Sony Centre this morning (Sunday) to ask about delivery/release date. It’s October 19th and they confirmed the price but said they had no information about the cases. I decided not to order at that point but later this afternoon changed my mind and went back onto the Sopny UK site. The pre-order information has gone!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!.
    What lunatic runs the Sony web sites?
    Barry (North of England)

  6. Just checked out the sony store website (US) and the black reader is available for shipping. The other two colors are delayed until October 16th.