Panasonic enters eReader market

Panasonic delve into the eReader market with their Raboo UT-PB1
Leanne Yip

July 26, 2011

Panasonic have partnered the popular Japanese online retailer Rakuten to make the Raboo UT-PB1 eReader. This eReader acts a lot like a tablet but Panasonic claim its primary use is for reading.

The device has a 7inch colour LCD touchscreen at a 1024×600 resolution. It also has a dual core processor, but the processing speed is unknown as of yet.

What makes this eReader stand out from other eReaders is that it has a camera - however this camera has only 1.3 megapixels, therefore will most probably take blurry photos.

This is a shame as a decent camera on an eReader would be a neat addition.

It also has 8GB of internal memory, though only 4.5GB will be usable although there is a microSDHC slot to increase the memory.

The UT-PB1 has Wi-Fi connectivity but no 3G, so you will not be able to download books anywhere except Wi-Fi hotspots.

Raboo UT-PB1 runs Android 2.2 Froyo. However android apps may not be available to download as you will only be exposed to what is available to Panasonic. 16 apps are already pre-installed.

Nevertheless the biggest downside to this device is that, when it goes on sale in Japan on 10th August it will cost 34,800 Yen (about £270) which is extremely expensive for an eReader.

With eReaders costing on average about £150, I believe it will be very difficult for Panasonic’s eReader to compete is this already crowded market.

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