It was only this past June when an all out price war in e-readers left many executives pulling out their hair, and consumers like you and me getting betters deals. The Aluratek Libre has just kicked it up a notch, breaking the mythical $100.00 barrier, to $99.00
In order to compete against other tablet computers, and increase conversion from traditional e-readers to iPads, Amazon, Sony, and Barnes and Noble drastically lowered their entry level prices, in order to sell more units.
Since Amazon lowered its price on its entry level Kindle 2 from $259 to $189, and just released the new Kindle Slim which enters the market at $139. Barnes and Noble reduced its price on its first e-reader, the Nook from $250 to $199. B&N also reduced a cheaper WI-FI version of the Nook, called the “Nook Lite” and it enters the market at $149.
Sony reduced prices across the board for ALL of its e-readers, and you can now pick up, pretty good ones, such as the PR 600 for less then $150.
Aluratek Libre Reader Pro can be purchased from many online vendors, including NEWEGG, among others for $99, although Aluratek themselves sell the unit for around $160. The Device reads many different eBook formats such as PDF, ePub, MOBI, PRC, RTF and text.
Lower prices may help grow the market, according to Forrester Research analyst Sarah Rotman Epps. In a report issued last year, she said that e-readers priced at $98 would likely draw the interest of more buyers than the higher-priced alternatives.
If the last two years have taught us anything, its that electronic readers are here to stay. There is a strong movement for non LCD displays, shifting to e-ink, which is easier on the eyes.
Many industry insiders do not see Aluratek’s move into the sub $100 range will spur another round of e-reader cuts. Stephen Baker, the vice president of the NPD group said “I don’t think at this point either Amazon, Barnes & Noble or Sony really needs to respond to these lower-profile competitors.”
Michael Kozlowski is the Editor in Chief of Good e-Reader. He has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past ten years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times.