March 7th brought a new ebook reader to the German markets. Tolino Shine is the name of the device that recently came out from a partnership between Bertelsmann and Deutsche Telekom, in cooperation with Germany’s leading bookstore chains—Thalia, Weltbild and Hugendubel respectively.
This device will be available in 1500 partner retail stores and online, at a cost of €99 ($129 USD) and it will definitely challenge the already established names on the European market: Amazon’s Kindle and the Kobo ebook reader.
Tolino Shine has a 6″ E Ink high-resolution screen with 1024 x 758 pixels and also comes with an integrated front light and an infrared touchscreen. This device contains 4GB of internal
storage, 25GB of cloud storage and a microSD card slot, to facilitate the memory expansion.
Users can easily download ebooks through the integrated ebookstore, having access to over 300,000 products in German. Due to the inbuilt Wi-Fi, users may also download ebooks from private ebook stores. Tolino Shine supports EPUB, PDF and TXT ebooks and thus ensures a wide range of choices for content selection.
The Shine comes with an 800 MHz processor, 256 MB of RAM, 7 week battery backup and also with access to over 11,000 free Wi-Fi hotspots in Germany via Deutsche Telekom.
According to the specifications, one of the most interesting feature about this ebook reader is that it runs on Android OS. And due to that fact, users may install tons of appealing software, as well as thousands of applications. Devices that run on Android, such as the Nook Touch and Sony PRS-T1 and T2 can be hacked and then set to download and install different apps for reading digital content. This is also the case with the Tolino Shine and considering the lack of limitations usually encountered when no free Wi-Fi network is around, this device has a big pro in Internet access via the Telekom network.
In the past months, Germany has stepped up and released quite a few ebook readers and gadgetry that have been recognized as a valid attempt to compete with Amazon and Kobo. It was high time that Europe came up with some development within the gadget industry and as far as the specs show, Tolino Shine will be a decent ebook reader that can run side by side with some of the bigger players. Not just that, but the collaboration with Thalia, Weltbuild and Hugendubel expands the accessibility of Tolino users and grants access to a vast library of ebooks and apps, as well as considerable cloud storage space.