The leading electronic readers, Amazon’s Kindle and Sony’s Reader, have greatly increased interest in e-books but share a couple of limitations: they are rigid, and they display only in black and white.
Earlier this year, startup Plastic Logic introduced an e-reader that uses polymer electronics to create a flexible display that is the size of a standard sheet of paper. Coming next are two e-readers that will offer some benefits previously missing: one features a color display, and the other is a pocket-size gadget with a screen that rolls up.
The Readius, made by Philips spinoff Polymer Vision of Eindhoven, the Netherlands, is the size of a cell phone and sports a rollable screen that stows away. The display uses the same black-and-white microcapsule display technology that’s used in the Kindle and the Sony Reader, but the capsules are applied to paper-thin flexible plastic and controlled by electronics made of polymer organic semiconductors. The Readius is expected to reach market later this year.