It’s been more than six months since we’ve seen hide or hair of the highly-anticipated Plastic Logic eReader, but the D conference has got it up and running, and even touchable. It’s as thin as we remember it, and the touchscreen appears to be fully functional. I was afraid from watching earlier demos that it might be limited to certain areas on the screen, but in fact it’s all over the place and you can even write with a stylus.
The screen is said to be sharp but pretty laggy right now, though e-ink displays are pretty slow as a rule.
The featureless design is infinitely more appealing to me personally than the Kindle’s button salad, although I’m guessing the onscreen keyboard is far less convenient. Crosswords would be fun as hell on this thing. They’re in talks with newspaper and magazine people right now for content, although the Kindle has a nice long head start on that front. Still, with both wifi and 3G inside, it’s got the connectivity.
Pricing is to be determined, but the guy wouldn’t commit to “under $500,” which suggests this thing will be pricey. It’ll be shipping in January of 2010, so they’ve got plenty of time to get that price down. Could this be the one that knocks the Kindle off the throne?