Could the Cybook be the E-Book Reader’s Ticket?


The Cybook is a very slick looking e-book reader that is being marketed by Bookeen. It displays using E-ink so it is only black and white, but easy on the batteries. A single charge is good for 8,000 page turns, which will allow you to get through War and Peace several times. It has an SD Card slot, for when your library starts to expand and can display a range of picture formats and will even play MP3s. It even has some RSS functionality in case you want to read Uberreview while you are on the move.

E-Book readers have never really taken off and I am not precisely sure why. I can hazard a pretty good guess that it has something to do with the price. How much does the average person read these days? What is the reading budget of the usual person? Why would someone shell out several hundred dollars on an electronic device when they only spend a fraction of that on books each year? E-Book readers have a place, but not in the home of the average person, not yet anyway. This is a nice offering from Bookeen, but I cannot help but feel that there is still a little room for improvement. Why not pack them with integrated Wi-Fi? That would make them more easily connectable in the home and really open it up to a lot more possibilities. I really feel that people lack the incentive to buy e-book readers at this time, because the readers are a little lacking in the versatility department. Is the Cybook going to take E-Book readers mainstream? Probably not.

Price: $350

Source: Bookeen via Techie Diva


About the author: C. S. Magor


C.S. Magor is the editor-in-chief and reporter at large for Uberreview and We Interrupt. He currently resides in a sleepy basin town in the Japanese countryside - where both his bank balance and the lack of space in his home are testament to his addiction to all things shiny.

Follow @csmagor on Twitter



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  • Greg

    I think you’re missing one more factor in why ebooks and ebook readers have never taken off. Most avid readers will tell you they prefer to be able to hold the book, to be able to leaf through it to re-read their favorite passages, etc. And most avid readers already ahve a large collection of books anyway, so why make the change if they don’t have to?

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  • rey

    “Most avid readers will tell you they prefer to be able to hold the book, to be able to leaf through it to re-read their favorite passages”….
    Well Greg, they can hold the e-book per se, Cybook’s all books, and they can re-read their fav passages too.
    I can say that people now watch tv, movies, videos, etc listen music, podcast, etc…but don’t read too much anymore and that’s very sad.
    I have more ideas about this interesting subjet.

  • rey

    “people lack the incentive to buy e-book readers at this time, because the readers are a little lacking in the versatility department”.
    Maybe but they are very wrong then, coz that’s what I like, this is not the next super-gadget, this is a “techno book” for people that want just to read, if they want versatility they have a laptop or a tabletop.

  • C. S. Magor

    I think you misunderstood what I meant with regards to the versatility comment.

    At present people connect their ebook reader to their PC using a USB cable. Incorporating Wi-Fi would give them so much more potential. Imagine being able to automatically update your reader with a magazine subscriptions just by leaving it turned on, or being in a Starbucks and being able to instantly grab the daily. What if you could loan a friend a copy at the push of a button. This is not about turning them into laptops or desktops, it is about increasing their functionality to a point that you do not need a desktop or laptop to use them.

    You can bet that the next round of readers are going to start incorporating things like that. They need to stand out from the pack. The differences in readers at the moment are mostly cosmetic.

  • David Peasley

    Unlike the cybok the ILliad another Ereader being sold bold by Irex has many of the features that you are looking for such as wireless as well as the ability to anotate and will soon have the ability to go online byut also costs twice as much as the cybook.

  • William Creamer

    Yes, there is room for improvement in the Cybook gen 3 and the Sony which is in it’s second or third generation depending on how you count Japan only versions, but if there devices are not taking off then why are they all sold out? The Kindle, The Sony Reader, The Cybook, and the iLliad are all difficult to obtain because they are all periodically (like now) sold out. The Chairman of Amazon even issued a letter of apology, and it wasn’t just media hype. On the Bookeen site they also say they are sold out, while Sony is trying to increase availability as well.

  • David Peasley

    they are sold out because the deemand for them is greater than the production of the screens all of them are based on eink screens they need to make more screens that is also the problem in the price the screen is the most expensive part in the reader. also I agree that it needs some type of wireless connectio suchas wifi but the gen 3 is really a chineese or japanese don’t remember for sure that is being repackaged and sold as booken’s

  • natashaem

    I like the Cybook’s battery life (a LOT)… lasts much longer than the Kindle. They are all sold out most of the time, but that also means that companies are more willing to give you special deals… I know that BooksOnBoard was offering at a sale price because it was sold out, and they’re still offfering it at a cheaper than normal price ( The improvements in firmware make me optimistic for the Cybook’s future.

  • William Creamer

    It’s going to be interesting to see what happens in this market if the 3 Astek Mentor e-paper readers, starting at less than $200, and possibly available through Walmart or Target stores this Summer, really take off.


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