Japan’s Sony has unveiled its first electronic reader with wireless connectivity in a bid to take on Amazon’s popular Kindle device, reports Reuters. The Sony ‘Daily Edition’ will go on sale in the US in December and will use AT&T’s 3G network for connectivity. It will cost US$399, US$100 more than Amazon’s basic version of the Kindle. Sony has previously introduced the ‘Pocket Edition’ for US$199 and the ‘Touch Edition’ for US$299. Daily Edition users will have access to digital books from 9,000 libraries, including 40,000 titles from the New York Public Library, Sony said. Amazon’s Kindle was launched in 2007 – a year after Sony’s first reader – but has enjoyed a considerably higher profile. The device costs US$299 for the basic version and US$489 for a large screen version geared toward newspaper reading. “The Kindle has captured a lot of attention because of the integrated wireless connectivity. So adding the wireless certainly fills a significant feature gap [for Sony],” Ross Rubin, a consumer technology analyst with NPD Group, told Reuters.

Sony is hoping that adding wireless connectivity to its readers will give it parity with Kindle, which works with Sprint’s network. Users of earlier Sony readers have had to plug their device into a computer when it comes time to download content. Daily Edition is also being positioned at users who are not willing to be locked into Amazon’s proprietary Kindle system; Sony has recently said it would convert its digital book store of over 1 million titles to EPUB, a publishing standard allowing users to read content on multiple devices. “What Sony is doing is really leveraging a number of its strengths, like industrial design and retail distribution,” said Rubin. “It’s trying to create that independence of content and device in the e-book category.” Some 8,000 retail locations are expected to sell Sony’s new reader from December.