Two decades of e-reader evolution

Barnes & Noble's new color Nook is the latest milestone for e-readers -- which first hit the market 20 years ago. Here's a look back.

1 of 7
BACKNEXT
A luggable e-reader
A luggable e-reader
The Discman tipped the scales at almost 2 lbs.

Sony Data Discman
Launched:
September 1991
Launch price: $550

The predecessor to today's e-readers, the Sony Data Discman read audio CDs and CD-ROMs (remember those?). The Discman was primarily pitched as a research device, letting users have access to encyclopedias and other digitized reference books on the go.

"The latest portable computers are marvels of miniaturisation, packing the magnetic disc and memory capacity of a desktop brute into an A4-sized slab. They can carry all the office databases," a New Scientist reviewer wrote in 1992.

E-books available at the time included Compton's Concise Encylopedia, Wellness Encyclopedia and Passport's World Travel Translator. The King James Bible and a year-in-review disc of USA Today were also available.


NEXT: Ahead of their time
Last updated October 26 2010: 6:22 PM ET
More Galleries
Amazing hotel gyms that make working out pure joy 12 of the most awesome hotel gyms around the country where business travelers can recharge More
5 travel spots for the young and curious Millennials like to go off the beaten path when they travel. From Havana to Taipei, here are top travel destinations for young travelers. More
The 5 hottest stocks of 2015 Netflix blew away the rest of the stock market during the first half of the year. Here's a look at the other top stocks of 2015. More

Special Offer