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ASDA supports Britain's bookworms with the launch of the £52 mobile library

Britain’s lowest cost eBook reader enables readers to access tens of thousands of free classic titles

At a time when there are mounting public concerns about potential library closures, Asda is doing its bit for bookworms by discounting the price of eBook readers to £52 – less than half the price of Amazon’s lowest cost Kindle.

Thousands of out-of-copyright classic titles are available online for free, enabling eBook owners to access an enormous range of outstanding literary content to read on commutes, holidays and on the sofa. The website Project Gutenberg alone currently has more than 33,000 free eBooks available for download, featuring works by authors that include Sir Arthur Conan-Doyle, HG Wells, Mark Twain, Jane Austen and Emily Bronte. Based on a reading speed of a book a day, this provides enough content to keep a reader going for 90 years. More recent paid-for titles can also be loaded onto the Asda eBook reader which recognizes a wide range of content formats.

Asda’s £52 View Quest Mediabox 5in Media Tablet features eBook, music and video playback. Users can read eBooks in portrait or landscape mode, store and view photos and images and it also has a built in voice recorder that students can use to make notes when they are reading. The tablet is backlit for night time reading, and has a power saving mode to reduce eye strain and improve battery life.

Adam May, tablet buyer at Asda, said: “There’s no doubt that the eBook is here to stay and we’re doing our bit to put affordable literature in the hands of bookworms. We’re also hoping that we can inspire a new generation of readers. At £52, which works out at £1 per week for a year, our reader is outstanding value and will give many years of pleasure to every generation of electronic bookworms.”

Unlike more expensive rivals like the Kindle, Asda’s eBook reader will also play movies. Once owners have finished reading a free Dickens classic they can watch a film adaptation.

Asda also stocks a wider range of tablets based on the Android operating system, with prices as low as £75 online at www.asda.co.uk for an Elonex 7” tablet.

Posted in Press Centre on 07 February 2011