Oct 14, 2009

TRULY SPEAKING: Handheld Electronic Dictionary Review

Summary: This article informs about "The Only Unabridged Electronic Dictionary" now available from Hammacher Schlemmer, as well as the company's compendium item, "The Advanced Electronic Crossword Puzzle Dictionary," both made by Franklin for Merriam-Webster.

Hammacher Schlemmer recently added a new product to its chic catalogue: They're calling it "The Only Unabridged Electronic Dictionary," and it retails for $299. Is it worth the price tag? Although I haven't tried it, myself, I must admit the description intrigues me:

"About the size of a mousepad (and far easier to cart ...), this complete reference includes words that you won't find in lesser electronic dictionaries with limited vocabularies, such as disselboom and zyzzogeton. Patented phonetic spell correction allows you to enter words on the 64-key QWERTY keyboard as they sound (for example, typing 'nolij' displays 'knowledge'), enabling easy lookup." Etymology and word usage are included along with definitions, and so are some extra features—like word games, a thesaurus, a style guide, and a one-year subscription to Merriam-Webster's online version of the dictionary (which seems a little redundant to me).

There's no mention of whether or not pronunciation keys are included for every word. As far as I can tell, this is the only potential omission.

The handheld dictionary device, made by Franklin, takes two AAA batteries and requires an SD adapter card. It ships from Hammacher Schlemmer directly with an approximate delivery time of two weeks or less. A compendium item that's also available is "The Advanced Electronic Crossword Puzzle Dictionary," another handheld system that operates similarly and requires two CR-2032 batteries.

Have you used either of these items or do you know someone who has? Help us out and fill us in on how you like (or don't like) these products.

© KiKi Productions, Inc. 2009

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