Mirasol 5.7-inch eReader hands-on, courtesy of Kyobo and Shanda Bambook

The 5.7-inch Mirasol display is hardly a fresh item these days, but the final product carrying such a unique panel is still young. In fact, it's only become available from Kyobo in South Korea fairly recently, but today we also learned that Chinese content provider Shanda will be offering the same hardware under the Bambook moniker towards the end of this month (obviously aiming for the Chinese New Year rush). The Android-powered device turned out to be chunkier than we expected, but it's probably a nice trade-off for the handy built-in front light and rubber pad on the back. As for performance, the display handled video playback pretty well, but you may spot one or two missed frames here and there due to the lower refresh rate. We'll let you be the judge -- check out our demo video (and a press release) after the break.

Show full PR text

Shanghai Nutshell, Seller of Bambook Branded E-readers and Qualcomm Bring First mirasol Display Technology to China
Qualcomm MEMS Technologies Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated (NASDAQ: QCOM), and The Shanghai Nutshell Electronic Co., Ltd, a subsidiary of Shanda Networking Co., Ltd, China's largest interactive digital content provider, today announced the first e-reader featuring mirasol® display technology, the Bambook Sunflower, to be commercially available in China in the coming weeks. With the Bambook Sunflower, Shanghai Nutshell introduces the Chinese consumer to a new category of interactive e-reader that delivers a touch display, vibrant color even in bright sunlight and weeks of reading under typical usage. *

"With the Bambook Sunflower e-reader, Shanghai Nutshell and Shanda have raised consumer expectations for digital reading, both in terms of color content and an interactive user experience," said Clarence Chui, senior vice president and general manager of Qualcomm MEMS Technologies, Inc. "Our mirasol display enriches users' experience of Shanda's content without sacrificing battery life."

The Bambook e-Reader includes access to Shanda's expansive content distribution portfolio, which includes millions of books, magazines and comics. Additionally, interactive content and social features enable users to share favorite passages with friends or send feedback to the authors.

"As a leading interactive entertainment media company, Shanghai Nutshell has the experience to understand and satisfy the digital content needs of Chinese consumers," said Tom Guo, chief executive officer of Shanghai Nutshell. "The Bambook Sunflower e-reader with mirasol display satisfies our customers' needs in ways no other device or display technology can."

The Bambook e-reader features a 5.7" XGA format (1024 x 768 pixels) mirasol display (screen resolution of 223 ppi) and Qualcomm's 1.0 GHz Snapdragon™ S2 processor. The Bambook custom application interface sits atop an Android 2.3 base.

The Bambook e-Reader will be available for pre-purchase and will ship to customers in February 2012. Customers may register to pre-order now at the Bambook Sunflower registration site.