BGR is reporting on a Digitimes report that states that Amazon is going to release a color eReader later this year. Let’s not spend too much time on this. E Ink (the company that makes the displays used on the Kindle, Nook and pretty much all e-ink eReaders) has made their Triton screens available. Just like current E Ink displays they are super low energy and readable in sunlight (and have mediocre refresh rates so they’re not replacing traditional LCD panels). From their website:
E Ink continues to revolutionize the ePaper market with E Ink Triton Imaging Film. Color ePaper displays enabled by Triton deliver high-contrast, sunlight readable, low-power performance that further closes the digital divide between paper and electronic displays. Triton enables color ePaper solutions, enhancing the visual experience for ePublishing markets such as eBooks, eNewspapers, eMagazines, and eTextbooks.
So I see color eReaders as the expected release this year based on the advance in the E Ink displays. In the past the same panels were used on the Nook and Kindle and I’d expect that to continue. Whether they are touch or not isn’t the E Ink panel (there’s a touch Nook and Kindle reader already – just a layer on top of the E Ink display) and expect future releases to be available in touch and non-touch versions separated by pricing just like it is now.