E-Book Reader Upgrade: New Sony Reader PRS-505 Firmware for Better PDF Reading, Using DRM-Protected PDFs, and ePub Format Support

Sony has released a firmware upgrade that will allow its Sony Reader PRS-505 to "reflow" PDFs, access PDFs with DRM protection, and use the ePub format. Next month, new PRS-505 models will ship with these capabilities.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

Sony today announced that its Reader Digital Book will be the first eBook reading device to support the EPUB format, the International Digital Publishing Forum’s XML-based standard format for reflowable digital books and publications.

Starting next month, new Readers model PRS-505, will be able to access and accept secure and non-secure ebooks in the EPUB format. EPUB has gained acceptance among major trade book publishers, many of whom have committed to begin publishing forthcoming ebooks in the format.

Additionally, the device will support Adobe eBooks with digital rights management and have the capability to reflow standard text-based Portable Document Format (PDF) eBooks for improved flexibility and readability. These enhancements are now made possible with the support of Adobe Digital Editions 1.5 software, which is available as a free download at www.adobe.com/products/digitaleditions.

"The Reader is an open device and we will continue to explore formats that will provide the widest variety of content for Reader users," said Steve Haber, senior vice president of consumer product marketing for Sony Electronics. "This upgrade opens the door to a whole host of paid and free content from third-party eBook stores, web sites and even public libraries."

Reader users can transfer these documents to their devices using Adobe Digital Editions software, or via the updated Sony eBook Library software that comes packaged with new Readers. Current owners of the PRS-505 model can upgrade their units now from the Sony support site:http://esupport.sony.com. . . .

PRS-505 model Readers will continue to support BBeB formatted eBooks offered at the Sony eBook Store. Therefore, users can retain and grow their current collections of eBooks without having to reformat or repurchase them. All files are conveniently managed by the eBook Library software.

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