Is Barnes & Noble’s Plastic Logic eBook Reader a Kindle Killer or a Last Gasp Strategy?

YouTube video courtesy of Associated Press

I’m still trying to digest this announcement from Barnes & Noble…

Announces eBookstore Partnership with Plastic Logic

…to decide whether or not it leads me to believe that B&N will become competitive against Amazon or or if it is simply a last gasp stragegy. I hopped over to the Plastic Logic website and found the AP video embedded above. The Plastic Logic reader is the same size as the new Kindle DX (8.5 x 11 inches). I like what looks like a simple touch screen interface. But, the plastic surface looks glassy and reflective. The flashing during page turns looks annoying. It won’t be available until January 2010. So, Amazon has a lot of time to secure the Kindle’s position (already dominant).

B&N may be able to overcome Amazon’s ebook leadership if they price their DX-sized reader at $199. This is possible if they replaced the 3G radio with WiFi and thereby also eliminate the wireless carrier charges associated with 3G.