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Texas Instruments getting into e-books

Victor Godinez
The Dallas Morning News (MCT)

DALLAS — Texas Instruments Inc. is getting into e-books.

The Dallas-based chipmaker said Thursday that it has developed processors and software for the booming category of electronic books that are more energy efficient than current systems.

TI said it is already collaborating with more than 10 e-book makers to release products this year using its technology. The chips and software being sold by TI will reportedly allow users to flip through more than 14,800 pages on an e-book before needing to recharge the battery, which is 50 percent more pages than with current displays.

E-books use a display technology that only draws power when the image on the screen changes.

TI developed a prototype e-book using a screen from E Ink Corp. That prototype will be on display at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week.

TI also said its chips are designed for e-books that have two screens: one for reading books and other content, and another for browsing the Web. Barnes & Noble's new Nook e-book uses such a system. Sales of e-books are predicted to grow rapidly.

Research firm iSuppli Corp. estimates that sales of the machines will grow from 4 million in 2008 to 12 million this year.

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