Ectaco showed off their latest color touchscreen e-reader at CES this year with the Jetbook Color. This is one of the most highly anticipated e-readers to hit the market in a long time because of its ability to use full color via e-Ink Triton. This new device is not meant for the masses, we were told, and instead is aimed at the educational market.
If you caught our review a few months ago of the Jetbook K12, the new Jetbook color uses the exact same firmware to give you access to many of its modules that make it a must have for any student. It features a 9.7 inch touchscreen, although you can only interact with it via the accompanying stylus. We were told by the rep that the company is working on a next generation model of the Jetbook Color that will not rely on said stylus and instead will be interactive through your fingers.
The main menu of the Jetbook Color is really your nexus point for the classroom. It is broken down into the ebooks you are currently reading, library, apps, audio, and educational software. There are many dictionaries and learning games on this device, but none are really that exciting. Some of the more interesting features found on this device are the SAT preparation courses and various science and math applications. One of the things I liked was the interactive periodic table.
Extaco is currently accepting pre-orders for the device for end users and we were told it would ship within a month or two. The company is trying to refine the firmware to make it compatible with the digital pen that was bundled with the Jetbook K12. This gives you the ability to basically scan text in physical books and then digitize all of the information and save it to your device. Really, the K12 initially was hyped as a great e-ink based reader that would allow users to read comics, books, and textbooks in full color. The company is really not even bothering with the end-user market anymore, we were told. Instead they are focused in Russia and landing lucrative contracts. Finally, they revealed that they are starting a pilot project with the New York educational system to bring their devices into various K12 classrooms in the next few months. Check out the full specs on this device HERE.
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 CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and Verge.