Sony Reader refresh rumored to be on the way
Sony, who has lately been bringing up the rear in the great eReader race, is rumored to be working on a refresh of their Sony Reader lineup. According to a source, Sony Insider is saying that the PRS-350 and PRS-650 models will be coming to the market soon. These models will replace their -50 counterparts and expand touchscreen input down to the 5-inch variety.
In addition to the Pocket Edition and Touch Edition refreshes, Sony will be more compact and lighter with a thickness (if that’s even the right word for it at this point) of 10mm. You can expect faster page turns, improved contrast and for them to be “attractively priced.” We’d wager that means that the WiFi-less PRS-350 would be priced around $129 with the WiFi connected (and possibly 3G included) PRS-650 undercutting the Kindle by a few bucks at $179. Those aren’t terribly good prices (and complete speculation on our part) but Sony never has priced their items comparative to the market. They usually rely on their brand name and worldwide popularity to pull them through the rough patches. Maybe they’ll surprise us with a $99 PRS-350 and a $149 PRS-650. Stranger things have happened.
Also rumored with the new Readers is an increase in storage capacity (from 512MB to 2GB, around the same battery life (which was already good at two weeks), USB 2.0 and that same great format support currently found in the eReader lineup. Our main concern is that the murky resistive touchscreen cover doesn’t survive past the PRS-600 model. That’s been our main qualm with the Sony Touch Edition Reader ever since the last refresh.
Source: Sony Insider