Don't you just love it when a plan comes together? You betcha. After catching an up close and personal glimpse at ASUS' dual panel touchscreen concept at CeBIT this past March, we soon forgot ASUS even had such a beast in the R&D lab. Just over a week ago, however, all those fond memories came rushing back with an off-the-wall rumor that the company just might push out an Eee-book reader later this year. Fast forward to today, and the Times Online has it that such a device is very real, and it should be out and about before the year's end.

According to president Jerry Shen, the Eee Reader will become the planet's cheapest e-book reader, though a premium model could also be launched to satisfy those craving higher-end features -- probably amenities like inbuilt 3G, a web browser and expandable storage. The dual screen form factor would enable users to read books as books were intended to be read, or they could use the secondary panel to surf the web, type on a virtual keyboard or whatever else ASUS dreams up. We're told that the firm is aiming for the £100 ($163) mark on its low-end model, and based on the affordability of its Eee PCs, we'd say it'll probably get awfully close. Hey Kindle, you skeered yet?

[Via BestTabletReview, thanks Rob]