Sony Reader Site Buckles Under Load

Looks like a lot of folks that received Sony Readers were faced with issues downloading the latest update of the Reader library on Christmas. I had procrastinated updating mine, so I faced the same issue yesterday. Fortunately it is all working fine today at http://ebookstore.sony.com/download/.

I’m not sure how to take the outage. On the one hand, I am encouraged that there were that many people with a new Reader trying to update their device. On the other hand, I am disappointed that Sony wasn’t prepared for the spike in traffic. I mean, who would have thought there would be a spike on Christmas? (sarcasm intended)

It does also highlight one of the key differentiators between the Sony and the Kindle/Nook. You need the software to load new books as opposed to just doing it wirelessly (the new Daily Edition Sony does have wireless).

It was the perfect storm, however. They created a required update to the Reader Library (You could not access the bookstore without 3.1) after the Readers were all wrapped for Christmas, so you had a lot of folks needing the update on the same day. Not the best planning on someone’s part.

But it is all fixed now, and it saved me some money. Instead of buying a couple of books to read, I visited Feedbooks and downloaded some Sherlock Holmes to read.

Posted in: eBook Readers

{ 6 comments… add one }

  • emmy December 26, 2009, 3:42 pm

    Looks like they pulled the site down, 5 hours now and counting………there message:

    **We’ll be back soon…We value your patronage and thank you for your patience while we update the store. The update will be complete in a few short hours.**

    1
  • Haesslich December 26, 2009, 8:43 pm

    You know, incidents like this and the nook outage are probably why reviewers are saying that Amazon beats everyone else for e-book readers…

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  • Jim Latimer December 26, 2009, 10:34 pm

    I remember itunes had the same issue a few years ago on Christmas too…

    3
  • Jim December 29, 2009, 7:26 pm

    I’ve been a Ereader user since the PRS 500 days…so three years or so now. We have 5 Ereaders in our household and buy books from the site a lot (I have some 90+ books in my library at the moment)…until the 11th of this month when, in order to purchase a book I was forced to download v. 3.1

    Since that moment I have been unable to sign in, keep getting an error 2027 message. Three separate conversations over the past couple weeks with various escalating help desk personnel (to Level 2, all very pleasant and apologetic) has failed to resolve the issue. Last time I spoke with them (22nd) I was told in the most pleasant of ways that

    a. I was not the only one with that error message (sounds like there are many others) and

    b. the only instructions they had was to pull info on my operating system and ISP performance off my computer and that “someone would be back in contact” but no idea when. So far no contact.

    I can’t help but think that Sony pushing out an update of this complexity just before the Christmas buying season was an act of almost suicidal stupidity. Serious loss of sales, serious loss of credibility, serious hit to the top line. Despite owning some 95 ebooks which will not be readable on another device I am very seriously considering a Kindle or Nook and just cutting my losses.

    I have had other issues with Sony software, they make pretty good hardware and deserve credit for hanging in with ereaders but their software is clunky at best and, at worst, simply doesn’t work.

    4
  • Robert January 8, 2010, 10:26 am

    This is why you don’t use Sony’s software. LOL!

    If you want a brilliant eBook management software, there’s a free one called Calibre. It’s the best thing to happen to eBooks since the eReaders themselves! It cross-platform, so you can use it on Linux, Mac, and Windows computers, and since it’s open source, it’s constantly getting upgraded and made better. Every month sees two to three version upgrades, giving new features, and improving old. It’s compatible with almost every eReader on the market, including several lesser-known ones.

    Just try it once – you won’t be disappointed:
    http://calibre-ebook.com/

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  • Bryan Sherman January 8, 2010, 2:46 pm

    @Robert

    Great recommendation. I have been using Calibre for years, it is a great tool for feeding your e-books. Only issue is with new works, you can’t get DRM books on your reader with Calibre.

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