Sony is getting ready to step up the action in the rising e-reader marketplace with two new models scheduled to debut at the end of the month. The first is a pocket-size version for less than $200, dubbed the Sony Reader Pocket Edition, which the electronics giant touted as the “most affordable dedicated reading device on the market.” This lower price point could be a crucial factor for Sony – with most people still not convinced that moving away from paper books is for them.


The device has enough internal memory to hold about 350 books, comes in three colors – blue, rose and silver – and has a 5-inch electronic ink display. Next up, the $300 Sony Reader Touch improves on its smaller sibling by including a 6-inch touch screen with a virtual keyboard and stylus for note-taking. It also has expansion slots for SD memory or Sony's Memory Stick Pro Duo to increase the number of books it can carry. By comparison, Amazon’s Kindle 2 retails for $300, while the large screen Kindle DX costs $490.

Unlike the Kindle, however, neither of Sony’s devices has mobile connectivity, so users will have to transfer e-books manually. The company also plans to reduce all new releases and best sellers at its e-book store to $9.99 each, down from $11.99, and offer access to Google’s public domain library.