TOKYO — Sony, battling Amazon and Apple in the electronic book reader race, said on Thursday it would launch its latest devices in Japan in December along with a dedicated virtual library. The move will mark a return to Japan for the electronic giant’s e-reader business since it left the market in 2007 after seeing low demand at a time when Japanese consumers were focused on mobile phone books.
Sony has cut the size and weight of its e-readers while expanding the use of touch technology to all models — allowing users to turn pages with a swipe of the finger like the Apple iPad. Unlike the color iPad, the Sony Reader uses black-and-white e-ink technology. Its two models, Reader Pocket Edition and Reader Touch Edition will be available Dec. 10 in about 300 Japanese stores, selling for 20,000 yen and 25,000 yen (US$240 and US$300).