The new reality of reading books.

Note before you start reading this one – this post was actually intended to be a part of a class presentation.  But as is often the case in creative endeavors, it was never used and left on the proverbial cutting room floor.  So I decided to post it here.  Enjoy.

It used to be that if you wanted to read a book, periodical, or magazine, you had one of two options: you went to the library or to a bookstore. These two options are still very much in existence, but consider the impact of the internet and the radical effect it has had on the way we receive much of our media input.

When I think of books, the image that almost immediately crosses my mind is the Amazon.com homepage. Launched in 1996, it was revolutionary in that it offered a wide variety books – far more than could ever be offered by a single store – and it would ship books that you purchased to an address of your choosing. You know longer had to go to a library or store to get new reading material; it came to you. Amazon.com has since grown into a global corporation that offers far more products than books to include movies, games, and electronics. Speaking of electronics…

In 2007, Amazon.com launched the Kindle, an e-reader that enabled a customer to download books from Amazon.com directly. No waiting on a book to be shipped. You could now download a book instantly. And the Kindle itself is capable of storing hundreds of e-books. Think about this for a second. Thanks to new technology, you can carry hundreds of books in your backpack, briefcase, pocket book, etc. at the same time. Not 10 years ago, this was physically impossible.

To carry this trend further, in 2012 most smartphones and tablets have the capability of installing e-book apps. You don’t even need to buy a Kindle, really. You merely need to download the Kindle app. You can be in a conversation at your office and have a book recommended to you. Using the Kindle app on your phone, you purchase a new book. Since you also have the same app on your tablet, both devices sync and are updated by your Amazon.com account. You can now have a new book anytime you want it, anywhere you want it, on multiple devices. The same holds true for various magazine and periodical apps and features. All of these media sources available on one compact device. And most of those devices can stream movies and T.V. shows as well.

No, this posting was not intended as free advertising for Amazon.com. However, as a loyal Amazon.com customer for the last 13 years, I highly recommend their services and Kindle products and apps.

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8 Comments

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8 responses to “The new reality of reading books.

  1. The new Samsung Galaxy is a tablet/cell phone hybrid that is about twice the size of an iPhone. I highly doubt that it will be successful, because phone users will think it’s way too big and tablet users will think it’s a bit too small. I wonder if the next evolution will be to move toward video chat capability on the cellular plans.

  2. cameronellis88

    Although I think all of what you stated is true, I am still trying to hold onto the traditional book. There is nothing better than holding a new book in your hands and turning the crisp pages. I feel like I have a foot in both worlds because although I receive the paper version of the Wall Street Journal every morning, I finish reading the paper on the WSJ for iPads throughout the day. I am sure it seems a bit redundant, but I just can’t give up the paper.

    • Often times when I’m out, I see children reading on iPads or Kindles and while I’m happy to see them using technology for educational use, I can’t help but wonder if they still read traditional books. I just remember there was a special feeling I got as a child from holding books and writing notes in the corners. My parents saved all my books from childhood and I still have memories of those reading experiences. Just wonder what types of memories kids who read on digital devices will have…

      • I have an iPad, and one of the things that initially led me to purchase it was the space-saving benefits of buying books electronically. Since I move every two to three years and I love reading, I am beginning to amass a huge book collection that gets harder and harder to deal with each time I move. That said, I really don’t enjoy reading from it at all and I wish I had saved my money.

      • Yeah, im contemplating purchasing an iPad, but I know I won’t use it for reading books. I understand how difficult managing a book collection can be when moving often. I still have plastic tubs of books in storage…lol.

      • That was my fear! I’m going to still purchase a tablet, but it won’t replace my bookshelf 🙂

  3. I have the entire Sherlock Holmes collection on my droid. E-Readers, Kindles, Ipads, phone apps are the new way to read books. I hope publishers will still print paperback fot the traditionalists out there.

  4. Ning Huang

    After reading this article, I have two opinions. First, it is so surprising that people could easily get access to the e-book online and even from smartphone, rather than walk to the library to search the book shelf by shelf. However, personally speaking, I still enjoy the feeling of turning the pages of paper books, which I have treasured from ,my childhood. Therefore, I hope that there is still paper version book for people like me even the technology for the public to get an e-book is highly developed.

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