Rocket eBook

What Does Rocket eBook Mean?

A Rocket eBook is a 22-ounce portable reading device with an LCD display manufactured by NuvoMedia in 1998. The company proclaimed it to be the first mass-marketed electronic book reader. It has a rechargeable battery averaging 20 to 25 hours per charge and could be connected to a PC. It has memory for up to 4,000 pages (about 10 novels) of text, which could be downloaded from the Internet.


In addition to simulated page turning, the Rocket eBook has features to highlight text, annotate, search, adjust type size, and create bookmarks. It is ergonomically designed to be easy to hold with natural controls and has an accommodating design for left-handed users.

Techopedia Explains Rocket eBook

Prior to 1998, physical books were sold on the Internet. Books were available on floppy disks and CDs, but the text had to be read from a computer screen. In 1995, the poet Alexis Kirk authored an article entitled “The Emus,” which discussed the need for what he described as wireless Internet electronic paper readers. In 1996, Project Gutenberg reached 1,000 e-book titles with a goal to reach one million. It was not until 1998; however, when the first international standard book number was issued to an e-book marketed on CD. The first e-book readers were manufactured by NuvoMedia and Softbook.

In July 2010, reported that e-books for its proprietary Kindle outsold hardcover books. Amazon sold 180 ebooks for every 100 hardcover books. However, paperback books sales still outnumbered both e-books and hardcover books. By mid-2010, e-books had 8.5 percent of the market, according to the American publishing association. This percentage is expected to grow in the coming years.


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Margaret Rouse

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.