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Linux-based eBook reader leverages lightweight browser

Nov 28, 2007 — by Eric Brown — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 1 views

Mobile phone software stack vendor Access says it supplied the lightweight web browser used in Amazon's Linux-based “Kindle” ebook reader. The NetFront browser enables users to click through to linked reference sites, such as Wikipedia, while they are reading.

The Amazon Kindle is a recently introduced portable reading device that Amazon says offers access to over 90,000 Amazon books, blogs, magazines, and newspapers via a built-in EVDO cellular modem. It is claimed to offer 30 hours of battery life, thanks to “fpow” power management and a power-thrifty E-ink EPD (electronic paper display).

Amazon Kindle
(Click for details)

Access's NetFront browser is best-known as a mobile phone browser. However, the browser has also been marketed as a service framework and user interface platform for set-top boxes and other devices. According to Access, the browser has shipped in over 1,200 PDAs, smartphones, and other devices, representing some 440 million deployments.

The newest versions of the NetFront browser are claimed to support many modern web standards, including AJAX (asynchronous JavaScript + XML), and the W3C's SMIL2.1 specification's Mobile Profile, Extended Mobile Profile, and SVG Tiny 1.2. Most recently, Access added a Flash player, DLNA supplicant, and “EBO” (embedded browser optimization) feature to the browser. Additionally, Access a year ago launched a third-party program for providers interested in ensuring optimal rendering of their content on NetFront browsers.

Stated Charlie Tritschler, Director, Kindle, “The Internet holds a wealth of text-based information and access to great resources like Wikipedia. Kindle customers can quickly and easily reference websites while they are reading.”


The Kindle is currently “available” for $400 on the Kindle Amazon page, but at last check was out stock.

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