You may not be the audience for Family Christian Stores’ new color-screen e-reader, the edifi. But with religious ebook sales surging, the chain hopes that special religious features will entice shoppers to choose its device over others.
Family Christian Stores, which has nearly 300 locations throughout the U.S. and calls itself the country’s leading provider of Christian books and supplies, just launched the color-screen Android edifi for $149.99. It’s available online and in Family Christian stores. The company also offers a free Family Christian Reader app for iOS (s AAPL) and Android (s GOOG).
Like a low-end version of Barnes & Noble’s $169 Nook (s BKS) Color, the edify is essentially a 7-inch WiFi e-reader with some tablet functions. It’s preloaded with a Family Christian Reader app and includes a “suite of family-friendly features” including safe-search Web browsing, Christian radio and English Bible translations. It has a touchscreen and some basic tablet functions like web access and email, though it lacks Nook Color apps like Netflix (s NFLX).
“It’s been rewarding to tell my friends and family that I have a Christ-centered tablet,” one customer writes in a review, but another says, “I haven’t decided yet if I am going to keep it or save up for an iPad.”