Txtr beagle

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Beagle 5" Reader

Beagle

  • Made by: txtr
  • Released: Oct 2012
  • Predecessor: none
  • Languages Supported: German, English
  • File Types Supported: internally a form of uncompressed 4 bit BMP.

Overview

German company 'txtr is launching an eReader that seems targeted at punters in the market for an eBook reader. The new Beagle eReader is set for release this month and it'll cost just €9.90 (although prices may differ depending on what the different 3G network providers decide).

The Beagle is powered by a pair of AAA batteries and includes 4GB of onboard storage. While it doesn't have any card slots for extra storage, it does boasts Bluetooth connectivity, which allows owners to transfer their eBook purchases from smartphones and tablets, Txtr has bundled the Beagle with an iOS app that allows users to transfer and store their eBooks on Apple devices.

The Beagle has a 5-inch E Ink display with 8-levels gray scale and 800 x 600 pixels resolution. At a weight of 128 grams, it may be the lightest eReader in the world as well as being the cheapest.

Analysis

As information on this product emerges it seems that eBooks are reformatted into uncompressed bitmaps during the transfer to the device. There is an txtr app required on the phone or computer to facilitate this transfer via Bluetooth. The internal format seems to be basically uncompressed Bitmaps of 3 or 4 bits per pixel. Font size can be specified in the source book but not changed after the transfer.

It may be that this product is marketed as an add-on for a smartphone. The details are not known yet. It also seems that it can only promises support 5 loaded eBooks at a time, however it supports up to 15 eBooks depending on the size of the eBooks.

Transfer rates are pretty slow with Bluetooth, particularly considering the size and number of pages that are required for a full book. A 160 KByte eBook is reported to require 9 minutes although the user can beginning reading after the first page is transferred. Battery life on the supplying device will be impacted.

Specifications

  • Display: 5" E Ink display with 8-levels gray scale and 800 x 600 pixels resolution
  • Weight" 128 grams (with batteries); 111 grams (without batteries)
  • Dimensions: 140 x 105 x 4.8 mm (14mm at the battery side); Volume: 100 cm3
  • Power: Recommended battery types - AAA, 1.5V lithium, alkaline batteries or NiMH rechargeable batteries.
    • Battery Life: Read for more than 1 year (12-15 books per year with normal use. Actual lifetime may vary by battery type.).
    • Voltage: 3.0 V
  • LED: Red and blue LED colors on front side indicate the Bluetooth state and battery power state
  • System Requirements: To get more books from user's library requires (1) pairing via Bluetooth of smartphone (2) txtr Android app with beagle support
  • Memory: 4 GB. Number of books cached: Up to 15
  • Media Formats: Handles all formats supported by smartphone (e.g. ePub, PDF).
  • Bluetooth: version unknown, used to transfer books to the device.
  • Included in the Box: txtr beagle, 2 AAA batteries and Quick Start Guide

History

none

See Also


Limitations

The user can select a book to read and read it only by changing pages, forward or backward. There is no goto page (that is no page number anyway), nor is there any way to select a chapter. There are no bookmarks although the location in the book is saved between sessions.

At this release there is no way to delete individual books. It would seem that all the books would need to be transferred from the source sequentially.

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