The Navy is understandably cautious when it comes to electronics. Since iPads, Kindles, and other handheld devices are not always secure, it does not allow service members to use them on submarines. This means that the only way for someone working on a submarine to obtain reading material is to go to a small on-board library and check out a book, which is just too old fashioned.
So, the Navy is coming out with an alternative to that in the form of the NeRD eReader, otherwise know as the Navy eReader Device. With no internet connectivity or removable storage, most of the concerns present with a consumer electronics device are removed.
Just like the Amazon Kindle, the NeRD has an e-ink screen and is primarily meant for reading regular books and nothing else.
Since the Navy has designed the e-reader so that there is no way to add or remove files from it, every person who uses one will be limited to a pre-loaded set of 300 books that cannot be changed. So, while there may not be a whole lot of options for service members, at least it is more convenient than a stack of books. The titles included on the device are presumably similar to what a Navy library would include.
Digital books and audiobooks have been available to Navy service members and their family members for a while, but access to that type of content is only provided when on-shore. Obviously, being able to access the books while on a ship is useful and makes things easier.
As for what type of books are being loaded onto the devices. The Navy says that they will come with titles from authors like Tom Clancy and James Patterson, with some naval history thrown in for good measure.
Only 365 NeRDs will be available to start, with five being provided to each submarine, but the program may expand in the future.
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Summary: The Navy now has its own e-reader called the NeRD. It is safer than a Kindle and comes pre-loaded with 300 books that cannot be changed.
image via wallstreetjournal