Panasonic has outed a new Android-based ereader, using a 7-inch 1024 x 600 LCD display rather than an e-paper panel like the Kindle or NOOK. The Panasonic UT-PB1 slate, which made its debut at the e-Book Expo Tokyo DigInfo reports, runs an unspecified dual-core processor and, rather than taking on the iPad, is expected to target new ebook buyers in their 30s and 40s.
Like most Android tablets we're seeing, there's an integrated webcam, WiFi and a microSDHC memory card slot, and there are the usual apps for browsing, email and other functionality. Panasonic has tweaked the UI with a pinch-gesture bookshelf layout, showing which titles are unread and which are partly-read.
Meanwhile there's also a push-messaging system using the UT-PB1's WiFi connection and a specially-developed API, that can display new Rakuten information as it's released. Panasonic expects the UT-PB1 to be primarily a Japanese-market device, where it will come preloaded with 600 ebook titles. No word on pricing or availability.