Kno: US$599 Student Tablets

All Things Digital: Kno’s student tablets will be available at the end of the year. The single-display Kno is priced at $599 while the dual-display version is $899. Foxconn is assembling the Kno student tablets and according to CEO Osman Rashid the initial production run is limited to just a few thousand. Rashid:

We found that 85 percent of those using the single screen wanted the dual-screen version and that those using two screens took three times more notes. Students said they love the fact that they can write in the textbook itself and it appears the way it needs to be, even in digital form.

The display is 14.1-inch in size and packs a 900×1440 pixel format. Melissa Lin, a sophomore biology major at UC Berkeley and Kno beta-tester:

My experience with Kno has been really incredible. My books have become more interactive and the ability to hand-write electronic notes on the book pages themselves has changed how I retain information. I see a ton of difference with the Kno. I can carry everything with me including my books, my notebooks and a browser for research. And, with the lower cost of digital textbooks, it will pay for itself in three semesters which is really great.

The single-screen Kno weighs 2.6 lbs; 5.6 lbs for the dual-screen version. That sounds heavy until you realize how much heavier a few textbooks can be. Just to find out I searched through Amazon; here are a few examples:

  • Calculus with Applications, 8th Edition, by Lial, Greenwell, Ritchey: 864 pages, 3.8 pounds
  • Biology, 5th Edition, by Campbell, Reece, Mitchell: 1175 pages, 6.4 pounds
  • Macroeconomics by Mankiw: 608 pages, 2.8 pounds
  • Psychology by Myers: 928 pages, 4.8 pounds

Four classes. 17.8 pounds. Now that’s heavy. Even with a 11.6-inch MacBook Air (2.3 pounds) the total poundage is over 20.