Monday, March 08, 2010

It's E-Book Week!

E Book Week is March 7 - 13th. Founder Rita Towes wanted to share a few things about this special week.

No More Paper Cuts For Readers

Although it will come as no surprise to e-book aficionados, electronic book sales exploded in 2009. While traditional print publishers staggered under the burden of high per-unit costs, discounted on-lines sales prices, and reduced sales during the recession -- readers gleefully snapped up e-book readers in unprecedented numbers. According to the International Digital Publishing Forum, sales of electronic books rose 254% by the third quarter of 2009. Forrester Research predicts a staggering 6 million e-books could be sold this year, double the 3 million sold last year.

And what about e-book readers? 43.3 million devices were manufactured by the third quarter of 2009. That translates to a 4.2 percent increase in production from 2008. With the Canadian release of the Kindle 2 in November - watch for an even greater market share for e-books in 2010!

This year several e-book readers are set to challenge the hold Sony and Kindle have on the market. Given the number of readers recently launched, 18 at the recent Consumer Electronics Show, it would appear prices for readers should fall.

Many readers found the Barnes & Noble Nook e-reader under the Christmas tree this year. The Nook boasts two screens: one the traditional e-ink 16 shades of grey and the other a flashy 3 ½ inch full-color touch screen for navigating through menus and book covers. This innovative e-reader will even let you lend a book to a friend for two weeks. You've got to love this type of technology!

In the "more good news" category, Aluratek has unveiled a new, lower-priced e-reader: the Libre eBook Reader PRO. This reader doesn't have a lot of bells and whistles, which is okay for those who want an e-book reader and not something that does everything except make your morning coffee. It boasts a decent battery life and comes in at about $179.00.

Fictionwise is offering it's own e-book reader, the eSlick, and Time Warner has developed a proto-type digital tablet to read Sports Illustrated electronically. Can other magazines be far behind?

Plastic Logic debuted the Que at the CES show. More than just an e-reader, it features a calendar and documents management system. A European launch is scheduled in six months. According to the Plastic Logic website, the Que has a whopping 8.5 x 11 inch screen that makes reading business documents, newspapers and periodicals effortless.

Of course, we can't forget the multi-use devices many of us own already – the trusty smartphones and Ipods. Apple reported more than 1 million downloads of Amazon's free Kindle e-book reader application for the iPhone.

E-books have arrived!

Visit the E Book Week site for more information!


JournoMich said...

Oh. It is finally here. I know I will have to deal with this as an author, but for now I'm sticking with my paper and glue.

Example: On a flight last week, three women asked me about the book I was reading--because they could see the cover and read the author's name! Two of them wrote it down and intended to check it out, maybe even buy it.

Can and E-Reader do that?


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Michele, good point! I prefer physical books as well, but I know the next generation will grow up thinking eBooks are the bomb.

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

Very interesting, Diane! I'm *almost* to the point where I'm ready to buy an e-reader. Almost! But I'm definitely going with the flow here. As long as people are reading, it's all good.

Mystery Writing is Murder

Creative Chronicler said...

Call me old fashioned but I like to read actual books. I will occassionally read ebooks and I get the advantage of them but I spend all day looking at a computer screen for work. To read a book on a screen is like work to me and less enjoyable. I'm a gadget girl, I love them, but don't we really have enough gadgets. The ebooks I do have are on my computer, again more like work and I don't intend to get any of the ereader handheld gadgets. I have better ways to spend my money. Just think how many Real books I can but for the price of one of those.

Jane Kennedy Sutton said...

Though I'm not ready for ebooks, it's nice that books in any format are selling.

Arlee Bird said...

Another luddite here. I don't have any e-readers, ipods, smart-phones, or what have you. I have my regular old cell phone that I rarely use and my computer which I'm on a lot but still don't know much about.
I liked Michele's point about a book being a conversation starter. If I see someone reading a book it gives me some kind of insight about the person and perhaps an inroad to meeting someone new.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Have to admit, I'm not an eBook person either. I have downloaded several onto my computer, but I wouldn't want to take them with me. I look at a screen enough during the day! But as an author, I'm glad my books ARE available as eBooks!

Tony Eldridge said...

Wow- the e-book industry IS exploding. I still like to sit at a coffee shop with the feel of paper between my fingers. Grabbing a paperback is a lot more convenient than grabbing my laptop (I don't have an e-reader yet). But it is amazing to see the e-book industry starting to mature before our eyes.

Bah Humbug Marv said...

Yeah, yeah, yeah ... I know e-books are here to stay and will probably be the dominant form of books in the near future. I'll never stop wanting a physical book in my hands to curl up with in my favorite chair and read. But I still have my books available in ebook format - you HAVE to these days.

The Old Silly

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Tony it is wild if you think about what we are witnessing!

Yup Marv, gotta have books available in eBook form.

I'll probably get an eReader in the future and I predict it will be the Apple iPad since it's so much more than a reader. I love iTunes, so the alure of their iBooks store might be too much...

B. Miller said...

I feel I've been lax in researching e-readers and e-books. I love the tactile sensations associated with paper and glue publications, so I never even considered an e-reader until this year, and the only reason I'm interested in one is because I want to learn more about the device I might have media available for in the next couple of years. Looks like I need to do a little homework and become more familiar with one of these things. Thanks for posting this!

joe doaks-Author said...

It's funny, I was first published 10 years ago. At that time, ebooks weren't considered "real" books. Fast forward...yeah, ebooks are for sure real.

Nice summary.


joe doaks-Author said...

It's funny, I was first published 10 years ago. At that time, ebooks weren't considered "real" books. Fast forward...yeah, ebooks are for sure real.

Nice summary.


Jemi Fraser said...

It's always interesting to see how technologies change our daily lives. This trend probably going to continue to build for a bit.

Jai Joshi said...

E-books are fantastic!

I used to complain about how people would forget the simple joy of reading a real book made from paper until I noticed all the benefits of e-books and changed my mind.

I'll always love and prefer paper books but e-books are definitely the future.


Elizabeth McKenzie said...

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Anonymous said...

I think I'll get an iPad just for e books. But you can't beat reading a hard cover book. There's something about putting that paperclip to mark the page you left off.

Stephen Tremp

Carolyn Howard-Johnson said...

We seem to be on the same beam, Diane. I blogged about my participation (with poetry partner Magdalena Ball) in this program on my blog this week. There is also a link there for an interview with the CEO of Smashwords. Very informative for anyone considering that path. See below for the link.
Carolyn Howard-Johnson
Blogging at Writer's Digest 101 Best Websites pick

MeganRebekah said...

I've been an ebook fan for years. I love them!

Beverly Stowe McClure said...

Informative post, L. Diane. I prefer print books, but ebooks are okay. I have an old, old ebook reader, one of the first. Forget what it's called. A few ebooks are on my computer now.