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Pandigital Novel preview

Joanna Stern

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Sure, Pandigital's Novel may be delayed until next month because of some firmware issues -- and we haven't heard the most positive things about the 7-inch LCD based e-reader / tablet -- but we had to check it out for ourselves. At $179.99 $149, the all-plastic reader isn't going to win any build quality awards (it's also rather heavy for what it is), but the Android 2.1-powered gadget does have a pretty attractive user interface. In use, however, the resistive screen had to be pressed quite firmly to make selections and the software was noticeably sluggish. Surprisingly, the device did play a standard definition video smoothly and it has an accelerometer -- which is more than the Archos 7 Home Tablet can brag. Barnes & Noble's eBookstore will be preloaded, and it also has a skinned Android browser of some sort. We've got a short hands-on video after the break, but you've got the picture here: the Novel isn't what we'd call novel, you just get what you pay for.

Gallery: Pandigital Novel preview | 25 Photos

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