Competition in the e-reader market is heating up. Foxit Software’s eSlick is rolling out a digital reader with a $259 price tag ($229 at launch), undercutting Sony’s e-Reader and Amazon’s Kindle by at least $100. The cheaper eSlick seems better poised to compete with Sony’s device, as it doesn’t have the WiFi/subscription content that has drawn Kindle buyers in droves.
PC World says Foxit plans to bundle WiFi into the next iteration of the eSlick, but for the time being, users can add upload content from their PCs to the reader via included software. And even without WiFi, Sony (NYSE: SNE) has been able to sell about 300,000 of its $399 e-Readers since 2006, so there’s still potential for this first-gen eSlick to gain a foothold — particularly with first-time buyers aiming for a less costly intro to digital readers.
As for the stats: the eSlick weighs about 6.5 ounces, and is less than half-an-inch thick. The reader has a 6-inch, grayscale screen (made by the same company behind Kindle’s screen) and comes in black, gray or white. It has 128MB of internal memory, USB and SD card slots, and the company says the reader should last 8,000 “page turns” between battery recharges. It reads PDFs and text files, and plays MP3s.