Thursday, August 19, 2010

A fight to the death in the eBook wars

Early this year everybody was going to sell an ebook reader to compete with the Kindle. However, the introduction of the $500 iPad - also an ebook reader - changed everything. The IEEE Spectrum has a really good discussion of the latest developments in this fast changing field - who's in who's out and who's on the ropes. As the price wars continue, remember an ebook reader is only as good as its supply of books. As companies drop out of the race their devices could become $200 boat anchors. Whoops, sorry about the old cliche - boat anchors need to weigh more than a pound!


  1. I'm not a big E-book reader, though I suppose I'll have to educate myself on them if I ever want to try putting together one of my own.

    What's the story with " remember an ebook reader is only as good as its supply of books"?

    Does this mean that an E-book can only be read in certain readers?

  2. Paul - There are multiple formats and not all readers can read all formats. This format battle is being fought on many fronts - eBooks, eTextbooks, eMagazines, eNewspapers, etc. Different display technologies and screen sizes further complicate the matter.

    The iPad (and I presume future tablets from other vendors) can read books from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, etc. which puts additional pressure on dedicated eBook readers.