Icarus has been making e-readers since 2012 and they have been one of the early pioneers of making very accessible devices. They pioneered open Android on their complete line of products, not locking you into an walled garden, but instead allows you to install any Android app you want. The company has a new e-reader that will be available this November, called the Illumina XL.
The Illumina XL features an 8 inch capacitive touchscreen display with a resolution of 1024 x 768. Icarus decided to employ E-Ink Pearl technology because the higher resolution e-Ink Carta screens aren’t compatible with 8 inch devices.
Underneath the hood is a 1 GHZ processor and 512 MB of RAM. There is 8 GB of internal storage to house your e-book collection, but if this is not enough for your needs there is an SD card that is expandable up to 32 GB.
Icarus is really hyping up the slim design and claims its up to 20% lighter than competing devices. (145 x 200 x 9mm, 275gr.) They managed to pull this off because they decided to forgo manual page turn buttons and instead relies exclusively on the touchscreen display. There are only two buttons on the device: on/off and the home button.
One of the most compelling features of this e-reader is the fact it is shipping with Android 4.2. Users will be able to install mainstream e-reader apps like Kindle, Kobo, Nook, Skoobe , Bliyoo and hundreds of others.
This e-reader will be available towards the end of November and will be retailing for 199.95 Euros. The price for North American customers has not been determined.
Michael Kozlowski has written about audiobooks and e-readers for the past twelve years. Newspapers and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times have picked up his articles. He Lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.