The Pocketbook CAD is a 13.3 inch e-reader that is primarily aimed at business users and anyone involved in AutoCad design. Since early 2014 the device has been in limbo, with no definitive release date. Where in the world is the Pocketbook CAD?
Without any fanfare the Pocketbook CAD was at an e Ink booth in January 2014 at CES. It featured a 13.3 inch screen and utilizes an e-paper called Fina. This is basically super lightweight glass and is easy to hold with one hand. The device was designed for construction business, designed to work on construction sites with dump & moisture proof body
Underneath the hood was a 1GHz dual-core CPU with 2 GB of RAM and 16 GB of internal storage. It has built-in Wi-Fi and an optional 3G module. You will be able to use this device for a few days with its large 8000 mAh battery. It also has full support for a Wacom digitizer which will allow for pin-point procession in editing documents.
In December 2014 Pocketbook announced that they had developed a second e-reader called the Pocketbook CAD Flex. This model upgraded from a glass based Fina e-paper screen to a 13.3 inch Mobius panel. This is the exact same screen that the popular Sony Digital Paper employs. The processor was increased to a 1.5 GHz dual-core CPU, but the RAM was decreased to 512 MB and internal storage lowered to 8 GB. They also mentioned that the final price will be around $574.00.
Flex is in the name, but does this mean the e-reader is truly flexible? Pocketbook clarified to Good e-Reader that “the e-Ink Mobius e-paper panel is actually flexible on its own and we have developed a low-temperature insert casting of the body with the use of rubber to provide relative flexibility of the Pocketbook Flex. But it is not totally flexible, as there are some inflexible components inside. So, although its somewhat flexible its not 100%, but our intention is to make the device more shockproof.”
The switch to Fina to Mobius is a big deal. Mobius is more expensive, which promoted Pocketbook to lower the amount of RAM and internal storage to offset the increased cost for the consumer model.
The Sony Digital Paper is currently the only commercially viable 13.3 inch e-reader on the market. At the beginning of April 2015 the price was decreased from $999 to $799.
The one thing both of these devices have going for it, is that they run on a fairly modern version of Google Android. Last I heard it was running 4.04. This means not only does have it apps that 100% compatible with Autodesk apps but users can install their own e-reader, manga, magazines or newspaper apps. Heck, you could even install our optimized Good e-Reader App Store for e-Ink.
There is no estimated date in which the Pocketbook CAD and Pocketbook CAD Flex will be released. Pocketbook would not comment on when it will hit the market, but I predict it will be in the six months.
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.