Pandigital, a company mostly currently known for their photo frames, is teaming up with Barnes and Noble to release a full color e-book reader in June. With a 7 inch touchscreen, WiFi connectivity, and multimedia capabilies, this e-book reader called the "Novel" is powered by an Arm 11 processor, 1GB of onboard memory and a slot for SD/MMC memory cards supporting up to 32GB capacity.
At 7.5 inches by 5.5 inches, the Novel is being dubbed the "mini iPad" by some although with an 800x600 resolution the screen is not as sharp or as responsive as the iPad. The Novel will run an Android OS and retail for $199.99 though, so with all of the onboard connectivity functions this will be an interesting alternative for those who do not have the cash to invest in the iPad. Battery life for the Novel is rated at around six hours, which is not as efficient as the iPad or other dedicated e-book readers like the Amazon Kindle.
Pandigital is marketing the Novel firstly as an e-book reader. With access to Barnes and Noble's e-book store with many free and paid titles and the LendMe feature that allows a friend to "borrow" a book for 14 days, the Novel could be the go-to e-book reader when it releases. Then again, an item with a built in web browser, e-mail client, alarm, and calendar has the potential for a whole lot more.