Saturday, April 30, 2011

Devices for ebooks

I love ebooks. I love how they can be read on multiple devices. I'm excited how quickly the 'enabling technology' is progressing; money flowing into a sector always does that. :)

Part of this is the CPU/wireless chips and expanding integration. I'm not going to go into the details, but there are chips out there I'm truly excited about what they offer the consumer from: Nvidia, Freescale, Qualcomm, TI, and Samsung/Apple. Some has to do with reduced cost (Freescale & Qualcomm), and some has to with the performance. (I would love to be able to watch movies on my e-reader too.) Billions are being spent in this area. This will provide hundreds of millions of new ebook capable devices. :)

The number of people I know 'catching a book' on their smartphone (mostly 4"+ screen Androids) is staggering. (I'm aware of more people reading on 4" Android than Kindle and Nook +Nook color combined!) As the volume increases, the screen cost and quality will only improve. :) I'm also looking forward to an e-ink/lcd screen combo smartphone. (Again, combine a great e-reader with movies.)

I've been seeing Kindles in the wild more than ever. I used to be the only one to bring one to my favorite dinner... Now I'm one of a handful. :) One lady at my daughter's ballet class is very notable with the Kindle DX. Intense readers will stick with the Kindle. The bulk of the Kindles I've seen were purchased/gifted recently (as in December or more recently).

In my opinion, low cost tablets will be the bulk of casual e-reader growth in 2011 and 2012. In this category I include the successful Nook Color. Too many people realize that tablets are going to progress too quickly to expect to utilize one more than 2 years and that means they'll buy cheap.
I know quite a few people who read on the IPad. We have an IPad and really like it but learned how limited its capabilities really are when its 'host computer' crashed last weekend. :(

This rambling article has one point: there will be hundreds of millions of new ereader devices delivered to customers over the next few years. Most casual readers will read off devices bought 'for other purposes.' The hot devices of today will look quaint or over-priced in six months; so all companies will have to create new products and drive cost out of existing products.

So those who lock onto the meme of ebooks being limited to 50% market growth need to wake up and smell the touchscreen. Good weather will slow device sales... but once Fall hits, expect there to be a renewed push from pbooks to ebooks.

Its an exciting time for ebook authors. Good luck to you!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the well-wishing on "us" (e-book authors)! Love reading your articles, I always pore over your charts about e-book growth. Really fascinating stuff!

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