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E-books in 2011

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mgriffin:
Anybody feel any differently about electronic books and magazines now than when the Kindle first came out?

I don't own a Kindle but I have an iPad which is great for reading books, magazines and comics, and even has a Kindle app so I can buy anything a Kindle owner can purchase, just as easily.

There's so much great free stuff to read on the thing, I haven't gotten around to purchasing a lot of books with it yet. One thing I really like is the ability to get magazines electronically. I already have WAY too many magazines all around the house, and it makes me reluctant to subscribe to more, or even purchase single copies on the newsstand. But with electronic subscriptions, you can prevent clutter, get the magazine delivered immediately, and possibly even save a little money.  Especially with foreign magazines, where postage costs make the price ridiculous for a paper copy. I could see having subscriptions to a handful of electronic magazines in epub or pdf format, and just about completely stopping with the paper copies. Some magazines have really nice production values and those might still be nice to have on paper, but some are really pulpy and monochrome and would be just as nice in electronic format.

I keep thinking I'll find a bunch of the books that I've been trying to find in print forever, and finally grab them up in e-versions, but they're not pervasive enough yet. So, those out of print obscurities haven't made it to epub yet, but maybe eventually.

I've certainly purchased more paper books since I bought my iPad than ever before, so it's hardly convinced me that people will stop buying books when they get an iPad or Kindle or Nook, but I can see how things may start to shift a little.  Anybody else?

APK:
I have a Kindle 3. Its great. Excellent battery life, and very readable. I really do like reading on it. Super convenient. Very quick to download books. I have lots of classics and philosophy, which is my preference, and its great because so much of it is free or about $1.99.

Also great for loading up gear and software manuals in pdf and having them in one place. Never know when you are going to be stranded at an airport for 3 days!

Only complaint with the Kindle is the lack of organization of the contents. Could easily be visually better.

These things are amazing for traveling light.

jkn:
Here's my blog post on why I love my Barnes and Noble Nook from last summer - nutshell is I can't really hold physical books very long anymore - it hurts too much to read... getting the Nook opened books back up to me again!   http://relaxedmachinery.ning.com/profiles/blogs/kinetoscope-022-why-nook

I mention the "page turn speed" issue - but that's been resolved.   

I agree with APK - now that I'm getting a larger library built up on my Nook - it'd be nice to have other ways to organize.  Since Nook is Android based - maybe someone will develop it, we'll see.  I imagine it's about the same on the Kindle.

Both the Kindle and Nook are available mass market in many stores now (Best Buy carries all the major and many minor players in the eReader market).  Walmart, Target, etc.. carrying models.

I don't know if Kindle has this yet - but I truly love the ability to turn pages on *both* sides of the Nook.

It's all about the eInk for me...  I love our iPad - but if I'm going to sit and read a book for an hour - I want eInk!

mgriffin:
We were in a big Barnes & Noble store this weekend and the Nook display (and surrounding displays of covers and accesseries) were absolutely swarming with people.

For some reason I see this, and Amazon's announcement of very strong sales figures for the new Kindles, as being a good sign, yet at the same time I would really hate to see a drop-off in availability of paper books. Just the way some labels now release download only and have no physical CD (or vinyl) version available for those who prefer it, I'm afraid if e-books become too popular, it'll mean certain categories of less-popular books won't be feasible in print editions any more.

jkn:
oh - now that Kindle and Nook have both opened up their readers to just about every platform (ex. Heidi can read our entire Nook library on her iPad) - the issue over eBook formats isn't quite as big an issue.

There's Amazon's format - and there's everybody else's format "ePub".   Many authors hated Amazon at first due to the extremely low pricing... most of that's also been hashed out.   You'll notice eBooks cost at least as much as a paperback release - and a brand new hardback in eBook format can be expensive.    

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