Blog Post

The Kindle DX Vs. The Plastic Logic eReader

At least four companies, including Hearst and News Corp (NYSE: NWS). have big-screen e-readers in the works in the U.S. But only two, Amazon.com (NSDQ: AMZN) and Plastic Logic, have provided specs on their devices. Here’s how Plastic Logic’s eReader and Amazon’s Kindle DX measure up:

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Bottom line: The eReader is lighter, thinner and has a touch screen, but the DX undoubtedly has the big-mo because of Kindle’s dominance with e-readers and its earlier release date.

12 Responses to “The Kindle DX Vs. The Plastic Logic eReader”

  1. jonboy1969

    What really has me bummed is that even if you buy or wait for the Plastic Logic (or any other e-reader) you wont be able to buy any books from Amazon (unless you own a Kindle).
    It took Apple YEARS to remove the DRM from the itunes store so you can now listen to itunes store bought music on almost any portable mp3 player. Once it was only playable on the ipod, now Apple's itunes music is available to other mp3 players. I hope that Amazon (and Sony) will learn this lesson fast.
    Alot of people are overlooking this HUGE disadvantage in competing e-readers. I love the way Amazon has set up its site for buying books (but hate its proprietary AZW file format) , and this puts Plastic Logic in second place right off the bat. Unless it could read both Sony's and Amazon's file format! now that would be a great dream come true. Why can't we all just get along :)

  2. Mark,
    That was an interesting read too, on your page. All of it. But, with regard to Plastic Logic, I was shocked to be reminded that it will have no email nor a web browser on it.

    It seems geared to newspaper and large media advertising, and now I remember they were promising a way to track viewer interest, a bit like a super cookie, following your path via its device to the (limited) many shopping areas for reading materials. It IS a big plus that the screen is not breakable glass.

    The speaker for Plastic Logic didn't seem to differentiate between WiFi that requires hot spots and the usual encryption processes and the 24/7 cell phone wireless networks that work wherever a cell phone might.

    (Some have been able to browse the web with the Kindle while their Sprint phones could not access the network – go figure.)

  3. Joe,
    Thanks for the reply and info. I'll wager right off that the Plastic Logic's wireless if it decides to do that, vs, WiFi, will be at additional cost on a monthly basis.
    From what I've seen, it's a beautiful unit. I hope its response time for stylus input is better than Irex's Iliad's. I still can't believe the Iliad costs $820 and without wireless. The 40-second bootup time is odd too but is still part of the 2nd edition.

    nathanr,
    Joe's chart shows fictionwise as a partner. They're one of the online-books outfits that many Amazon Kindle users use for non-Amazon books on the Kindle, and it seems Barnes and Noble recently bought them.

    To see the discussion on Amazon forums about the million or so books one can get from non-Amazon sources, see:
    http://tinyurl.com/freekindlebooksites

    Mike,
    In reply to your question, Amazon supports, on its Kindle DX, "wireless delivery of unprotected Microsoft Word, PDF, HTML, TXT, RTF, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP, PRC and MOBI files. In addition, DOCX conversion is supported as an experimental feature." No ePub though…

    – Andrys

  4. That would be awesome but it's not possible (yet).

    It's not set up to display color because they are using the e-ink technology which lessen strains on the eyes, increases battery life and makes the reading feel more like a book.

    For reading, definitely Kindle is great at what it does but if you want a bit of everything, try a netbook (bit bigger but does all of those)

  5. I wrote about a recent demo of the Plastic Logic device at Missouri yesterday, with more details on it so you can fill your chart with:

    http://bit.ly/OABUG

    Storage: 6GB

    Weight: 12 ounces

    One other key difference: Plastic Logic device has no glass so is not breakable. Very lightweight (at least the prototype I saw).

  6. How about adding formats supported?

    Plastic Logic: PDF, DOC(X), XLS(X), PPT(X), TEXT, RTF, HTML, JPEG, PNG, BMP, ePub, eReader Format, Digital Rights Management.

    Kindle: ?

  7. nathanr

    Amazon has another major advantage that doesn't appear: Amazon.com and a massive online brand. Where or who is going to know what Plastic Logic is or has? Are they going to market in partnership with B&N or Google to catch up and be a price play?

  8. What is with you people and the touch screen! Every body wants a touch screen! You know, you READ on this thing, who wants a bunch of finger print smudge marks all over the screen all day, you would be constantly wiping the thing down every time you touched it!!

    I should mention that I hate IPhones and love my Curve ;-)

  9. Joseph Tartakoff

    Thanks for the comment. Plastic Logic doesn't detail how its wireless access will work but it does say that the eReader will have both wired and wireless access to content.

    — Joe Tartakoff, paidContent.org

  10. I should add that I mean that for the last 1.5 years, there have been no additional charges to the customer for the 24/7 wireless access to the global net (not just the Amazon store) on the K1 and K2 and so far none is mentioned for the Kindle DX.

    The wireless access is a huge advantage, probably more so than the touchscreen capabilities of the Plastic Logic, but Amazon will need to provide that someday too.

  11. Well, I'm glad to see a rundown of the two but why did you leave off any mention of the Amazon's most noteworthy feature, the 24/7 wireless which carries no additional charges after 1.5 years?

    Thanks for any follow up.