Google offers a digital book platform which allows you to purchase, download, and read eBooks on most Android phones or tablets. You can also read eBooks online using most devices with a web browser or download books to read on devices that support the EPUB format such as the Sony Reader or Barnes & Noble NOOK. Now Google has announced that the first dedicated eReader based on Google eBooks will launch on Sunday, July 17th.
The iRiver Story HD will use Google eBooks as its online book store. That means you’ll be able to purchase books or grab free books from Google’s online book store and download them over a WiFi connection.
Like the Amazon Kindle, the iRiver Story HD has a QWERTY keyboard below the E Ink display. You can use it to search for books or login to WiFI hotspots.
Google’s platform is open to any device makers that want to integrate it, but the iRiver eReader will be the first dedicated eBook device to ship with Google eBooks as an alternative to book stores from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Sony, or others. The iRiver Story HD will sell for $139.99 which is pretty close to what you’ll pay for the latest NOOK or Kobo devices. The eReader will be available exclusively from Target at launch.
Google offers 3 million free titles and “hundreds of thousands” of books for sale.