Amazon will roll out the new version of its popular Kindle electronic book reader early next month, according to a New York Times report. The company has announced via email that it will hold a news conference, hosted by Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, at the Morgan Library & Museum in New York on February 9th.
Industry watchers have anticipated a revamped Kindle for several months. Boy Genius Report posted allegedly leaked photos of the upcoming reader last October. If the shots are real, Kindle 2 will correct some of the design glitches in the original model. For instance, several buttons are now smaller to avoid accidental page turns, and a joystick has replaced the scroll wheel for screen navigation. It’s unclear whether the new Kindle will have a touch screen and backlight like its main competitor, the Sony Reader Digital Book PRS-700BC.
Electronic book readers have been fairly high priced thus far, but that hasn’t hurt their popularity. Example: There’s a 4 to 6 week waiting period for the $359 Kindle at Amazon.com (Today’s buyers will no doubt get the updated model). Sony Reader is a bit pricier at $389 to $399.
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