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Qualcomm, Koreans, launch e-reader

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Qualcomm and Kyobo Book Centre have announced the Kyobo e-Reader. The e-reader includes access to Kyobo’s 90 000 e-books, uses a 5.7‚ screen and runs Qualcomm’s 1Ghz Snapdragon processor.

Qualcomm Technologies and Kyobo Book Centre, Korea’s largest seller of books, have released the world’s first e-reader to include mirasol(R) display technology. Kyobo and Qualcomm have collaborated to provide a large and diverse content portfolio spanning books, magazines and video on a touch display that features vibrant colour in bright sunlight. The device will allow for weeks of reading under typical usage.

“Kyobo is a recognised content leader focused on bringing unique and innovative experiences to its customers,”” said Clarence Chui, senior vice president and general manager of Qualcomm MEMS Technologies, Inc. “”Kyobo’s customers will be the first to enjoy the exceptional colour e-reader experience and long battery life that only mirasol displays can provide.””

The Kyobo e-Reader includes access to Kyobo’s 90,000 e-book library, notably including early rights from Korean publisher Minumsa for the much-anticipated Steve Jobs’ exclusive biography, a full one-month before any other Korean digital outlet.

Additionally, the device features: video lecture content exclusive to EBS, a leading Korea-based provider of educational material: content sharing through Korean social networking services: English language text-to-speech capabilities: and searchable content through the popular Diotek dictionary application.

“”The Kyobo e-Reader brings the user a true book reading experience,”” said Mr. Seong-Ryong Kim, chief executive officer of Kyobo Book Centre. “”With our diverse content and leading edge technology from Qualcomm, Kyobo Book Centre will provide a premium reading experience to our customers.””

The Kyobo e-Reader features a 5.7″” XGA format (1024 x 768 pixels) mirasol display (screen resolution of 223 ppi) and Qualcomm’s 1.0 GHz Snapdragon S2 class processor. Kyobo’s custom application interface sits atop an Android 2.3 base.

Kyobo’s e-Reader is now available for purchase at the full retail price of KRW349,000 (US$310). Kyobo Platinum Book Club members can purchase the e-reader at a discounted price of KRW 299,000 (US$265). Kyobo’s e-readers are available at bookstore locations across South Korea, including Kyobo’s flagship Gwanghwamun-jum location in Seoul.

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