Backlighted Kindle coming soon?

It turns out that last year Amazon bought Oy Modilis, a Finnish company that patented lighting technologies that are suitable for e-readers. There are reports that Amazon is indeed planning to release a Kindle with some sort of lighting, and Devin Coldewey from TechCrunch claims he's actually seen a prototype. The light is soft and blue-white in color.

Personally I don't think it's so important to light my e-reader. If I want to read, I prefer an external light source, just like when I read a book. Reading on an LCD (or OLED) display in the dark is very annoying, but maybe Amazon's new "soft" light will be better.

source: Engadget

Backlit eInk

I've seen a backlit eInk device, and I can tell you they look sweet. It's not like an LCD at all, but more like a soft glow. Since eInk works by reflecting light (or not) to create its dark and light areas, it requires external light. In dimly lit rooms or in the evening when you don't want to disturb others with a glaring light turned on, the onboard light would be ideal. It provides just enough illumination to see the screen, and can be turned on or off, and even has an auto-mode that detects low ambient light. In combination with color eInk/Mirasol it could eventually spell the end of LCD displays for ebook readers. And since you can turn it on and off it shouldn't effect battery life all that much.

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