It looks like the release of Blio, the much anticipated e-book reading software developed by technologist Ray Kurzweil, is getting close. In partnership with Baker & Tayor, Kurzweil’s firm KNFB Reading Technology says the free e-book reading software will be available for download beginning September 28 for Windows-based devices, with iOS (Apple devices) and Android to follow at a later date. Also on Sept. 28, the partnership will launch a Blio-branded e-book store offering a million for-pay and free titles, including the latest bestsellers.
First announced at the Frankfurt Book Fair in late 2009, Kurzweil’s Blio offers publishers a PDF-based digital format that will display books in full-color in their original print appearance. Blio software is said to offer interactivity and the ability to embed notes, video and audio and also offers an enhanced text-2-speech function that highlights each word of the text as it is spoken. Blio will eventually run on a wide variety of PCs and handheld devices. The partnership is also planning to offer Blio formatted titles through customized digital media storefronts in the coming months.