The Entourage Edge is a new device that refuses to fit tidily into any single category. At face value, it’s kind of an eBook reader. It has a 9.7 e-Ink display and a low power Marvell processor, which kind of makes it an eBook reader. But the Entourage Edge also has another display, this one a 10 inch touchscreen LCD that makes the device look more like a netbook or a web tablet. It also sports integrated WiFi.
The Edge also runs Google Android, which is a heck of a lot more powerful and versatile than your typical eBook reader operating system.
But how does this $490 hybrid device perform? CNET’s Ina Fried got a chance to test a prototype, and she’s posted a hands-on video.
The target market here is students. The device is intended to replace both a textbook and a notebook for some tasks. You can, for instance, highlight text and scribble notes on the e-Ink display, while looking up information on the color LCD. You can also copy pictures from the black and white e-Ink display to the LCD to view them in color.
The eBook reader supports EPUB and PDF files, and it has two built in mics for recording lectures or voice notes (one of the mics is used for noise-cancelling purposes, to make recorded lectures come out more clearly).
The Entourage Edge is due out in February. It’s certainly one of the most innovative devices I’ve seen in this space in a long time. Whether it actually meets anybody’s needs is a question that remains to be seen.
You can check out the CNET video after the break.