Last year Amazon released the Kindle Oasis, a premium e-reader that came bundled with a case. The case has a built in battery that extends the life of the e-reader by about four weeks, but the internal battery on the Oasis is fairly woeful, sometimes only lasting a few days. Bookeen also sells a dedicated case that charges the Cybook Ocean, but it runs on solar power and costs €59.90.
The big question facing the e-reader industry right now is what accessories do people find compelling? Accessories are big money for companies such as Amazon, B&N and Kobo. They frequently buy cases in bulk for around $7 to $15 and can mark them up to $29 to $49. Screen protectors, stylus and sleep covers are also big money since the margins are super high.
If Barnes and Noble or Kobo released a case for their line of e-readers that acted as a secondary battery, extending the life by three or four weeks, would you buy one? Would you buy an e-reader with a case built into it or an optional accessory? Would you like it to be solar powered to ambiently charge or to connect up to your computer via USB or a wall charger?
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.