TRE 4 Laurent Picard of Bookeen

This is an interview Darlene and I did on Friday, January 8, 2010, at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas with Laurent Picard, co-founder of the Paris-based Bookeen, creator of the Cybook series of eReaders, including the recently released Opus.

Laurent also showed us a prototype of the Horizon, due out in April, which will have a screen not based on eInk technology but instead provided by SiPix. Note: Be forewarned that the SiPix link will open with an irritating New Agey audio file that you will have to turn off by clicking on a note icon at the lower left if you want to explore their site in peace.

Bookeen’s original eBook, the Cybook Generation One, made its debut in 2007 just after the first eInk-screened Sony Reader but a couple of weeks ahead of the original Kindle. Laurent revealed a tidbit I’d never heard before, namely that the Kindle was code-named Fiona.  Thank goodness they brought in some branding wizards to dream up an alternative to that–otherwise we’d now all be talking about the Fiona-sphere.

I hope you’ll enjoy this conversation with Laurent Picard as much as we did.  And my apologies to him and to other French speakers for my brief forays into their beautiful language.

Click here to download this episode.

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2 Responses to “TRE 4 Laurent Picard of Bookeen”

  1. Andrew Says:

    Per the “Fiona” name mentioned, you see that name in a lot of the URLs when you deal with digital files on or manage your Kindle. You see /Fiona/ in the URL everywhere. I always wondered why. Now it all makes sense. The Kindle was supposed to be the Fiona!

  2. Marti Says:

    Your interview encouraged me to look into this device. I went to J&R Express at Macy’s yesterday and played with the one they had under the glass counter. I like it a lot. Every time I pushed a button, it worked quickly. It’s 5 ounces, which felt very, very light. There are numerous (12?) font sizes. I don’t see it replacing my kindle, but I’d like to buy one of these for gaining access to library ebooks.

    I’ve only seen it available in white in the USA, but isn’t he holding a blue one in the photo? I’ve also seen one online that looked like it was a silver-like color. Any other colors and how do we get them?

    The lowest price I could find is sold by Books on Board: $198 including ground shipping; no sales tax outside of Texas.