The Future of the Ebook
Let’s hope the various e-reader makers gathered their rosebuds while they could, because it seems the heyday of the e-reader is already passing. The Wall Street Journal reports that, according to one market researcher, e-reader shipments dropped 28 percent this year, to 19.9 million from 27.7 million in 2011.
On an anecdotal level, can you think of a single person who requested an e-reader as a holiday gift? Compare that to the number of people who got new phones or tablets.
They’re those people: the human being who buys a tablet that isn’t Apple’s iPad. They’re like Pepsi drinkers: Who are they? Why aren’t they drinking Coca Cola? What makes them decide to take the road less traveled (and defined) than everyone else? WHAT IS THE APPEAL OF THIS SPECIFIC BRAND IDENTITY? Etc. Whoever the hell they are, Barnes & Noble has just thrown a huge bet down, and it’s not just banking on that crowd, but the potential to win that crowd from the clutches of nu-publishing behemoth Amazon.com. How?
Well, for one thing, they’re hoping these people really love terrible books and Glee.