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Kobo unveils $99 ad-supported e-reader

Kobo Touch with Offers is the essentially the same as the Touch, but it comes with screensaver advertisements and a lower price tag.

The Kobo Touch with Offers costs $99. Kobo

Borrowing a page from Amazon's playbook, Kobo has quietly launched an ad-supported e-book reader.

The Kobo Touch with Offers features a 6-inch E-ink touch screen, Wi-Fi, and a $99 price tag--a $30 price reduction from the regular model. The only difference, Kobo explains, is that the device's screen will feature an advertisement at the bottom of the home screen, as well as a screensaver ad when it's shut down or in sleep mode.

"Kobo Touch with Offers presents you with sponsored screens and valuable offers when your device is powered off or in sleep mode, and in other discreet places that are always outside of the reading experience, like on the bottom of your home screen," the company explains. "Kobo Touch with Offers is currently available to customers in the United States in black only. Other than that, Kobo Touch with Offers offers the same reading experience as the popular Kobo Touch eReader."

The Kobo Touch with Offers is expected to ship to consumers in two to three weeks.

Amazon got the ball rolling in April when it announced it would begin shipping Kindle with Special Offers --a new ad-supported version of its popular e-reader for $114 or $25 less than the standard Wi-Fi-only Kindle.

Read CNET's review of the Kobo Touch (without ads).