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Sony Reader T1 Hacked

timothy posted about 3 years ago | from the oh-no-now-it's-more-useful dept.

Android 50

Nate the greatest writes "It's been just over a month since the T1 launched and only a couple weeks since it shipped — and it has already been hacked. A video has surfaced that shows the T1 running a number of apps, including a new home screen, AW Launcher, and a couple of different reading apps. It can't run Angry Birds just yet, but this is still great news. There aren't any details yet on when you'll be able to hack your T1, but I bet they'll be filtering out fairly soon."

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Extremely late (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37722828)

I don't know about anyone else, but these seem rather late, and I know most /.'ers hate on Sony anyway.

Maybe if the tablets were half the price of the iPad.

Re:Extremely late (2)

Cochonou (576531) | about 3 years ago | (#37722908)

It's actually an e-reader. The Sony tablets are called Tablet S and Tablet P.

Re:Extremely late (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37723114)

Hahaha. You think you're a funny man for saying that, don't you?

Don't YOU?!

SpspspspspPSPSPSPspSPSs. Foofoofoofoo. Wawawawawa. Bababababa. Gagagagagaga.

Re:Extremely late (2)

sosume (680416) | about 3 years ago | (#37722928)

Maybe if the tablets were half the price of the iPad

Are you trolling? These tablets are priced at €150, while an iPad starts at €499. Why would you want them to be more expensive? And they have an e-ink screen.

Re:Extremely late (2)

JavaBear (9872) | about 3 years ago | (#37722998)

e-books fills a niche that tablets are ill suited to.
As for hating on Sony; it is true, they are easy to hate at times, but Sony divisions are essentially separate companies in a lot of ways. Their e-books are nothing like the rest of Sony. While they do have their own proprietary book format, their readers are also among the ones with the broadest format support. The only "popular" format they don't support is MobiPocket, used by the Kindle.

Imho, Sony's Readers are pretty much everything we loved about Sony, before they became a media company. Good quality, easy to use, and built for the users.

Re:Extremely late (1)

BrokenHalo (565198) | about 3 years ago | (#37723540)

My wife has a Sony PRS-650 reader, and it is fucking awesome. I want one. However, my Sony/Ericsson phone sucks big-time, and I'm going to get rid of it as soon as I can afford it.

B&W? (1)

jhoegl (638955) | about 3 years ago | (#37722870)

Is.... is that grayscale?

What is this, the way back machine?

Re:B&W? (3, Informative)

erayd (1131355) | about 3 years ago | (#37722968)

It's an e-ink reader; it's supposed to be greyscale. While colour e-ink screens are now available, they're still *very* new technology, and not yet present in any currently shipping devices that I'm aware of.

Re:B&W? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37723080)

Butterfly in the sky, I can go twice as high!
Take a look, it's in a book!
A Reading Rainbow!

Re:B&W? (1)

JavaBear (9872) | about 3 years ago | (#37722980)

It's a book. An electronic book, but still essentially a book. And unlike the tablets, these can run for weeks on a charge.

You really don't need colours for a book. Well, most people don't, some need pretty pictures to understand the story, at which point you probably need colours too.

Re:B&W? (1)

jhoegl (638955) | about 3 years ago | (#37723006)

In a book, take a look...

if(book == novel) sure, elseif... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37723076)

I have Amazon Kindle (not the newest model but the one with a keyboard). I've tried to use it to read technical books (some books from O'Reilly, etc. are in e-book form, others only as PDFs...). Such books commonly contain graphs, diagrams, etc. that would really benefit from color. I think that it's a bit too dismissive to say "Colors aren't needed in a book (unless you are a 'special' kid)". (That said, my Kindle isn't very optimal for studying technical books even if it had colors. The UI just isn't good for that kind of "flipping back and forth" behavior... But perhaps the new Kindle with touch screen fixes that)

Re:if(book == novel) sure, elseif... (1)

pecosdave (536896) | about 3 years ago | (#37723182)

I love the fact my Kindle Keyboard (that's what they call it now) can display PDF files since most product manuals are shipped as PDF's now. Of course now I want a Kindle DX since it has a screen closer to the size of a piece of letter sized paper. Sure it's close to $400 but i think it would be easier to get one of those than to convince all the tech companies to make their PDF manuals for smaller screens.

what about the Kindle at $80? (1)

KWTm (808824) | about 3 years ago | (#37723316)

Since you mention the Kindle, I'll slip in this question about the Kindle. Apparently they are $80 on Amazon now, which is cheaper than the HP $99 WebOS tablet (but of course it also does less).

How hackable is the Kindle? Is it worth it at $80?

I basically want something to hold *MY* documents to read, either HTML or text (but I can convert to PDF, etc.). Would be a bonus to be able to edit them, save under subdirectories, etc. but that would be secondary. Would be a bonus to be able to grab documents wirelessly from my home web server but again I'm willing to put on documents via USB.

Other suggestions for cheap easy-to-use, easy-to-read tablets (with any DRM jailbroken) would also be welcome.

Re:what about the Kindle at $80? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37723544)

How hackable is the Kindle?

Not very. It's a device for reading on. If you want to do something other than that, you should go for a tablet instead

Is it worth it at $80?

Very much so. I bought the Wifi Kindle Keyboard (when it was called the Kindle 3rd edition) for 110GBP, and a case for 30, (total $220) and consider it money well spent.

I basically want something to hold *MY* documents to read, either HTML or text (but I can convert to PDF, etc.).

No problem, you can email them to your kindle email address (free if you use the wifi only address) or just copy them over USB, the Kindle mounts as generic USB storage. It doesn't handle HTML, but plain text and PDF are fine.

Would be a bonus to be able to edit them, save under subdirectories, etc. but that would be secondary.

Decide this before going shopping, it really does determine the device for you, tablet or e-reader. The Kindle doesn't do editing, but it does allow basic sorting of documents into "collections".

Other suggestions for cheap easy-to-use, easy-to-read tablets (with any DRM jailbroken) would also be welcome.

No tablet will be as easy to read on as an E-ink screen, but for cheapness you might want to wait a while. I suspect the Blackberry Playbook will be on clearance in short order, as they aren't selling well and the network outages this week have hurt their reputation.

Thanks. Mod parent informative (1)

KWTm (808824) | about 3 years ago | (#37727256)

anon coward replying with useful info; currently at +0.

Re:what about the Kindle at $80? (1)

pecosdave (536896) | about 3 years ago | (#37730222)

Mine actually has a web browser under "experimental". The browser isn't the best, but it isn't bad, I was working on servers on a vertical rack in a server closet and someone emailed info I needed to my Gmail account, if you do this select the "basic HTML" option on GMail for the device or it keeps reloading the page and it really sucks. I never tried pulling up a local HTML file with it.

Re:what about the Kindle at $80? (1)

fast turtle (1118037) | about 3 years ago | (#37723734)

the $80 kindle is ad-supported. If you want the Ad-Free version, it'll cost you $150. You also don't get an SD card slot to increase the storage.

Re:what about the Kindle at $80? (1)

Chaos Incarnate (772793) | about 3 years ago | (#37724324)

Ad-free is $110, not $150.

Re:if(book == novel) sure, elseif... (1)

BrokenHalo (565198) | about 3 years ago | (#37723592)

...but i think it would be easier to get one of those than to convince all the tech companies to make their PDF manuals for smaller screens.

Now that I'm no longer a student, this is less important to me, but I would have really appreciated being able to carry around my biochemistry and molecular biology textbooks on an e-reader when I was an undergrad. Those damn books were fucking heavy.

But 3 years down the track, the technology is only just getting there for this kind of publication. Diagrams in this kind of textbook are heavily (and indispensably) reliant on colour, and my eyesight would need to be better than it is to cope with small page formats.

Nowadays, though, since I only have to refer to these texts occasionally, I would be content with a nice reader for novels...

Re:if(book == novel) sure, elseif... (1)

pecosdave (536896) | about 3 years ago | (#37730200)

Can't wait for color e-ink. Even if it's crappy color like the 1980's it would be good enough for most technical / graph type info, boost it up to 256 it would be great for cartoonish graphics. I admit I only want color for a very limited number of reasons and I'm perfectly happy with gray scale for books and even most of the user manuals I mentioned, but yes, magazine subscriptions on color e-ink would be nice. I don't really want to go the LCD route, I've got enough LCD devices as it is, the reason I got a kindle was the not-LCD aspect, if I wanted LCD to e-read I could have used my hacked PSP, my Android phone, and my Netbook that gets awesome battery life, not to mention my dust-gathering iPhone, my bigger notebook, my desktop or why not my 36" CRT TV?

Re:if(book == novel) sure, elseif... (1)

Kartu (1490911) | about 3 years ago | (#37723186)

PDF rendering in Kindle is rather poor. Sony 950 (most A4 PDFs fit in landscape mode if you cut margins at nearly 1:1) is probably the best for such PDFs. (they also use Adobe's viewer that is superior to amazon's)

And in my humble opinion reading technical stuff would benefit more from going to bigger screens, rather than losing contrast and adding colors.

Re:if(book == novel) sure, elseif... (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about 3 years ago | (#37723476)

iRex made an A4 reader. I have their iLiad, which does pretty well for PDFs. Their hardware was pretty nice, but their Linux install sucked - battery was drained in a day even if you didn't touch the machine, which is completely unacceptable for an eBook reader.

Re:B&W? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37723500)

Yes, of course people only ever need color in books for "pretty pictures to understand the story". Because, you know, no one has ever, in the history of publishing and presentations, used color to do things like distinguish between multiple sets of observations in a line chart. That would be just silly.

Friends Don't Let Friends Buy Sony (1, Troll)

Ganty (1223066) | about 3 years ago | (#37722878)

OK, technically interesting, but these are the people who build notebooks where the letters rub off the keys and ship rootkits.

Friends don't let friends buy Sony.

Ganty

Re:Friends Don't Let Friends Buy Sony (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37723012)

Normally I would begrudgingly agree with this, but with eBook readers, Sony have one of the better builds and the software isn't half bad either.

Re:Friends Don't Let Friends Buy Sony (0)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 3 years ago | (#37723038)

Normally I would begrudgingly agree with this, but with eBook readers, Sony have one of the better builds and the software isn't half bad either.

giving sony money for e-readers just encourages them to continue to exist. they do too much damage to be permitted that.

Re:Friends Don't Let Friends Buy Sony (1)

JavaBear (9872) | about 3 years ago | (#37723056)

And their competition is so much better?

The sad fact is that just about all vendors in these market segments shaft their customers one way or another, Sony just got caught doing so in some slightly more spectacular cases than the rest have yet to experience.

Re:Friends Don't Let Friends Buy Sony (1)

Plunky (929104) | about 3 years ago | (#37723110)

The sad fact is that just about all vendors in these market segments shaft their customers one way or another, Sony just got caught doing so in some slightly more spectacular cases than the rest have yet to experience.

The sad fact is that the majority of people just pirate music and movies these days anyway. The associations intent on stopping this try and pummel the ones they catch into the ground in order to deter the same behaviour in others. As Sony have been caught shafting their customers in a spectacular way, it would be a lesson to all the other corporations that thought that was ok if they took a public beating, much like Nestle [wikipedia.org] did, 30 years ago (their image has improved somewhat of late, but I still won't buy their products)

Re:Friends Don't Let Friends Buy Sony (2)

realityimpaired (1668397) | about 3 years ago | (#37723120)

actually, the competition *is* much better [kobobooks.com] .

ebooks are cheaper on the whole for the Kobo, and the Kobo has a *much* larger library of ebooks available, including a very large selection of free ebooks, thanks to integration of their marketplace with Project Gutenberg and Smashbooks. Kobo also has the largest selection of international books in the bookstore of any of the manufacturers, which makes them a much better option for anybody living outside of the US, or who wants to read books in non-English languages. The hardware is very good quality, the screen is better than Sony is using (I've used both), and the battery lasts just as long. They also have a colour e-ink version coming out in the near future (already taking pre-orders) which means that they're likely to be first to market with colour e-ink ebook readers. They're also a lot easier to load ebooks from other sources to than the Sony, as it mounts as a USB drive when you plug it in to your computer... copy the ebooks to the device, turn it on, and your books are right there.

And that's just one of the competition that's better than Sony. There's others that I'd pick over the Sony in a heartbeat... the Amazon Kindle is a great ebook reader (their disabling 3G web access aside), the B&N ebook reader is super-easy to hack into an Android-based tablet, etc. The Sony is actually the worst of the bunch, based on the ebook readers that I've used, and giving mine away and replacing it with the Kobo Touch was a no-brainer.

Re:Friends Don't Let Friends Buy Sony (1)

mcbiondi (879388) | about 3 years ago | (#37723470)

As someone who has also had both, the Sony product is much more finished. My Kobo was missing all kinds of features that would be nice to have in an ebook reader. Such as turning to a specific page, or using the build in dictionary with any document, not just those purchased from Kobo. The kept promising features like these in "the next release", but honestly I hate it when I buy something unfinished and have to beg the company to do what they said they would up front.

Also, my battery was always going dead after a few days - much, much sooner than the Sony.

Lastly, my Sony reader is compatible with many more formats than the Kobo, and my Kobo library transfered over seamlessly.

Re:Friends Don't Let Friends Buy Sony (1)

dbIII (701233) | about 3 years ago | (#37724094)

With Kobo their international distribution sucks badly and their artificial limits on international sales of the retailers that do have it makes it very difficult and expensive to get their products in a lot of the world. Getting a third party in the US or Canada to buy one and then post it on removes the price advantage and adds a few weeks to the delivery time. I'd like a Kobo touch but it looks like $200US total and a month before it would arrive. Even getting hold of the older wifi version meant getting it off eBay and waiting a week.
With a Sony you can actually see the things in a shop and buy them on the spot in a lot of countries.

Re:Friends Don't Let Friends Buy Sony (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37723824)

You wouldn't buy a SONY product.
You wouldn't buy a SONY product, defecate on it, murder a SONY exec, send the product to his grieving widow, and steal it back from her.

Re:Friends Don't Let Friends Buy Sony (1)

fotoguzzi (230256) | about 3 years ago | (#37725432)

Thanks, Ganty. I had almost forgotten about my friend's old Sonly laptop that overheated. About one day after the warranty expired, Sony's price for a motherboard went from ~$100 to ~$1200.

Brings back fond memories!

The What reader? (1, Interesting)

sirwired (27582) | about 3 years ago | (#37722934)

So, did the one person who purchased one hack it? The marketshare of this thing is so tiny in the U.S., I can only imagine Sony continues to distribute them here out of some sense of corporate stubbornness, just as with their ATRAC music players that for years could not play an MP3. I can only imagine that these have some kind of viable market in Asia, where the Kindle and Nook don't exist. (do they?)

I suppose it's not entirely broken by design (previous models in the line had serious shortcomings), but there isn't any reason to buy it over it's much more ubiquitous competitors either.

And it just got undercut by the roughly equivalent Kindle Touch by $50.

Re:The What reader? (4, Informative)

Kartu (1490911) | about 3 years ago | (#37723002)

Regarding TFA, it was "rooted" "old, non-android way", used to flash custom firmwares for earlier models.

Up to T1 model, Sony (well not exactly Sony, Kinoma) was using proprietary engine. (that also ran on other platforms, including Windows) They've sw

Offtopic:
x50 line of Sony Readers is actually superior to both Nook and Kindle and has quite a number of followers, also in US.
Product having little market share has more to do with marketing, than actual quality. (I find sony walkman (yep, they also do mp3 player, imagine that) vastly superior to apple/samsung's offerings.)

Re:The What reader? (2)

Fartalot (19158) | about 3 years ago | (#37723456)

I agree. I started from nook classic to kobo, then SONY Reader prs-350, and the last one wins in every category (battery, page flip speed, build quality, etc).

Sony Reader + Calibre combo is the "free" version of closed Kindle and the likes.

Re:The What reader? (1)

Man Eating Duck (534479) | about 3 years ago | (#37741994)

Sony Reader + Calibre combo is the "free" version of closed Kindle and the likes.

Agreed. Throw in the Calibre plugins to automatically strip DRM (google Apprentice Alf) and you've got the perfect setup. Ebook purchase -> Kindle4PC / ADE -> Calibre -> Sony Reader is literally a one minute operation. It's almost as easy as using the Kindle, and a lot better as you end up with a future-proof copy in your archive as well. As a voracious reader who likes to pay for his books I'm in heaven :)

Re:The What reader? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37725010)

(I find sony walkman (yep, they also do mp3 player, imagine that) vastly superior to apple/samsung's offerings.)

Unfortunately, you can't put Rockbox on Sony's walkmen, which puts it a step down. I am a big fan of Sony Readers, tho. My 505 is still going strong.

Re:The What reader? (1)

geminidomino (614729) | about 3 years ago | (#37726150)

You can't put it on most current iPods either. Anything after 5.5g or nano 2g looks like a no-go (source: rockbox.org).

I'm definitely with you on the 505 though. I still use mine when my NC battery dies (I do love the NC's backlight, though), and I think it's particularly awesome that I can use calibre to manage both.

Re:The What reader? (1)

Nyder (754090) | about 3 years ago | (#37732414)

Regarding TFA, it was "rooted" "old, non-android way", used to flash custom firmwares for earlier models.

Up to T1 model, Sony (well not exactly Sony, Kinoma) was using proprietary engine. (that also ran on other platforms, including Windows) They've sw

Offtopic:
x50 line of Sony Readers is actually superior to both Nook and Kindle and has quite a number of followers, also in US.
Product having little market share has more to do with marketing, than actual quality. (I find sony walkman (yep, they also do mp3 player, imagine that) vastly superior to apple/samsung's offerings.)

ya, except i'm going to pay $79 for a kindle, not $130 for a Sony.

Re:The What reader? (1)

Kartu (1490911) | about 3 years ago | (#37723004)

Care to name a few "broken by design" points of the previous models? 505 and 650 in particular.

Re:The What reader? (1)

JavaBear (9872) | about 3 years ago | (#37723016)

Their readers are the odd ones under the Sony umbrella. Open format support, plays MP3 and AAC, not ATRAC, and they use SD cards. (MicroSD in the case of the T1).

The Kindle is a different beast, closed without open format support. The Kindle is pretty much everything we usually hate about Sony and Apple.

Valencia Asp Programmer (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37722990)

this is great news! :) thanks!

-http://www.imagineit.com

In other words (2)

Alwin Henseler (640539) | about 3 years ago | (#37723092)

Hackers add end-user value to product (by making it more flexible and/or versatile).

Next up: manufacturer works hard to reduce product's end-user value to what it was before.

Lawsuit... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37723346)

Comming in 3... 2....1..

Friends don't let friends buy sony for a real good reason.

NookTouch (1)

jago25_98 (566531) | about 3 years ago | (#37725148)

Can't see the NookTouch mentioned on this particular thread so I'll mention it here. I've got it doing these things already, including VNC to Firefox for when you get tired and your laptop screen goes fuzzy, RSS readers, better PDF support, dropbox, Bitcoin wallet and tickers, ssh tunnelling, offline maps via MapDroyd (can see in sunlight), ReaditLater & Kindle.

Rooting is very simple, but the Sony build quality might be better. Things would be simpler if both devices had Cyanogenmod7.

Feel free to join us, or developers on the XDA forum section at http://forum.xda-developers.com/forumdisplay.php?f=1198 [xda-developers.com]

I bought a NookTouch with the only intention to root... after selling an iPad2 actually (no joke, it's not a comparasble thing). Have fun!

How Is This News? (2)

Zamphatta (1760346) | about 3 years ago | (#37725288)

I'm sorry, but saying "SONY Got Hacked" is like saying "Microsoft Did a Business Deal". What did you expect out of your day?

Cliche much? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37726214)

It can't run Angry Birds just yet

That's not clever any more. Please stop.

just to make sure.. (1)

ehkim92 (2487130) | about 3 years ago | (#37744578)

this is the sony reader that's being discussed here yes? http://www.pronto.com/product/sony-prs-t1-6-digital-p_2006115718 [pronto.com] i currently have the nook color and for a similar price, i'd say it's a far better deal just the fact that you can access the b&n store is advantageous, i'd say
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