Feeds

Amazon fingers touch tech firm

Kindle goes to the feelies?

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Amazon is reportedly buying a company specialising in touch technologies, and recruiting hard to keep the Kindle at the front of the shelf.

Touchco is a New York startup spun out of New York University to exploit "interpolating force-sensitive resistance" to create cheap multi-touch surfaces, which, according to the New York Times, has prompted Amazon to snap up the six-man company.

It's not just technology that Amazon is throwing at the Kindle though, Mary-Jo Foley reports that the company has also recruited Mike Nash from Microsoft, a man with experience of building development ecosystems, into the Kindle team.

Despite getting bigger, and going international, the Kindle is looking decidedly low-tech these days. Touch sensitivity is pretty-much standard for an eReader, and the Kindle's hardware keyboard never looked right on a book.

Multitouch makes a soft keyboard a lot easier to use, so that would be a good start if Amazon can integrate the technology into a next-generation Kindle. Still, eReaders are poised at a cross-roads right now so don't expect anything to happen soon.

Some of the competition have squeezed in a second screen in the hope of putting a little colour into their e-ink-based products, but colour e-ink is still some way off. Apple's iPad will, no-doubt, attract a lot of interest but it remains to be seen if users will really be happy reading books on a backlit screen, and Amazon might do well to see what iPads get used for with a view to emulating the more-popular applications.

If iPad users do decide e-ink is unnecessary for reading books then we can expect to see everyone dropping the technology pretty quickly, so Amazon will want to be ready for that eventuality too. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Don't wait for that big iPad, order a NEXUS 9 instead, industry little bird says
Google said to debut next big slab, Android L ahead of Apple event
Xperia Z3: Crikey, Sony – ANOTHER flagship phondleslab?
The Fourth Amendment... and it IS better
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
A drone of one's own: Reg buyers' guide for UAV fanciers
Hardware: Check. Software: Huh? Licence: Licence...?
The Apple launch AS IT HAPPENED: Totally SERIOUS coverage, not for haters
Fandroids, Windows Phone fringe-oids – you wouldn't understand
Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores
The, er, Beats go on after noise-cancelling spat
Here's your chance to buy an ancient, working APPLE ONE
Warning: Likely to cost a lot even for a Mac
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.