Home » Ebook/Ereader Growth, Kindle, Kobo, Nook, Tablets » Video Killed the Radio Star? Who is primed to succeed as ereading evolves?

Video Killed the Radio Star? Who is primed to succeed as ereading evolves?

4 February 2013

From Publishing Trends:

Though the holiday sales rush is over, there’s still no shortage of talk about ereading devices. The only problem? The market and technology has grown so much in the past year that “ereader” has come to mean so much more than dedicated devices such as the Nook Simple Touch or Kindle Paperwhite. This past month brought a lot of speculation as to whether or not the tablet has more or less killed the ereader. With tablet sales soaring, signs point to ‘yes,’ but some predict that ereaders will bounce back in the new year and that heavy book consumers still prefer the simpler device.

. . . .

“As more Android-based tablets are set to release in the coming months, Finvista Advisors’ analyst Sameer Singh believes that 2013 will likely mark the year iOS will lose its tablet dominance to the little green robot. However, that projection is based on an 18% drop in iPad sales for Q3 2012, when people were waiting for Apple‘s iPad mini announcement. Now that the mini has been released and deemed a bona fide success, it’s unclear if 2013 will be the tipping point, after all.”

. . . .

“A chirpy Kobo has claimed it now has more than 12 million registered users, four million of them creating ebook buyer accounts with the company during 2012.

It lauded its device sales too – well, its e-ink kit, not its Android-based tablet offerings – insisting it had captured 20 per cent of the world ereader market in 2012.”

Tony Smith, The Register (1/17/2013)

“Sales of the iPad 4 were not expected to be harmed by the smaller, sleeker and cheaper iPad Mini. As the king of touch screen devices, Apple was thought to be the one company that could overcome any risk of cannibalization.

According to Reuters, that may not be the case. The publication reports that Sharp (one of Apple’s largest display suppliers) has significantly reduced the production of screens for the full-size iPad.”

Louis BedigianForbes (1/1/2013)

Link to the rest at Publishing Trends

Ebook/Ereader Growth, Kindle, Kobo, Nook, Tablets

6 Comments to “Video Killed the Radio Star? Who is primed to succeed as ereading evolves?”

  1. So, this definitely matters to those who make the devices and the market place. But , taking a bigger view, I don’t think it will effect the transition to a digital technology.

    If anything, tablets make e-books even more accessible. I’ve heard the argument that tablets mean e-books will be read less because of the competition for eyeballs on the tablet, i.e., apps, games, t.v., etc. I could be missing something, but that seems off-base to me. The competition is already there. And this narrows the gap by making it even easier for a book to be read.

    Access to books has been a huge factor in the past. Books were hard to find and hard to get. With digital technology that has completely changed, and I honestly don’t think it matters what the device is, except for the fact that tablets will bring books to the entire population, and not just heavy readers.

    So, my prediction: both will survive, but dedicated e-readers will become very cheap and eventually given away.

    Anyway, my preference isn’t for a dedicated device or a tablet, it’s for my phone that I can put in my pocket and read anywhere, because it’s backlit.

  2. I agree with Mira.

    I’d just add that it will appear that tablets are taking over for ereaders, but I suspect that it’s really that ereaders will have the same solid base, and that tablets (and smart phones) are the thing making inroads into new demographics.

    In other words, ereaders won’t grow much. Tablets will. But the tablets will be taking customers away from PAPER (or gaining new customers) rather than taking them away from the ereader.

    However, if manufacturers are their usual idiot selves, they may see the growth in tablets and dump the ereader crowd, not realizing that those people don’t want tablets.

    But the first manufacturer that does that will probably be a lesson to the others. One thing I noticed this month: I prefer a netbook to a tablet for working. I started pre-shopping for the next netbook a year or so ago, and found they were almost gone. Barely a netbook left…. and then this year, they’re back again.

    This tells me that it’s all about the niche. People will buy more than one device and use it, but they want the device they want. And if their favorite manufacturer doesn’t make it, they’ll find another who will.

    • Hear, hear.

      I had jury duty two weeks ago and I thought “Hey, I’m going to be locked in a room for hours with nowhere to go and nothing to do. I could get in some writing!”

      I took my netbook with me because writing on a tablet, I don’t think so, and my laptop is too big and heavy and the battery doesn’t last long enough (I didn’t know if I’d have power.) It was great.

      As it turned out there was free Wi-Fi and I don’t keep work stuff on my netbook (it’s my personal property) so I *could* have got on the Internet, but I was mostly good. I did take my 3G iPad so I could check work mail. (I’m not allowed to connect my work stuff to a public Wi-Fi network.)

    • I have a netbook, an e-ink reader and a regular mobile phone, but I have zero interest in tablets or smartphones.

      A tablet doesn’t replace the netbook or e-ink reader for me, because e-ink is better for reading and the netbook has a keyboard that allows me to write and surfs the net just as well as a tablet would (in fact, I’m typing this on my netbook). I have zero interest in games or watching TV/movies on a tablet – in fact I have no idea why anybody would want to watch TV on such a thing, when there’s a lovely big flatscreen TV in the living room. Never mind that you have to hold a tablet up to watch something on it, which sounds like it quickly would become tiring.

  3. I love my Kindle e-reader and my Kindle Fire. I use the e-ink one for straight reading. Easy on the eyes and I can turn the page with the clickers on the side which keeps my other hand free to hold the steering wheel ;)

    I enjoy the Fire immensely but use it for games and movies. Reading is a bit more of a chore, what with eyestrain, being unable to read in sunlight, and having to swipe to turn the page (augh, the work, the work). I keep both in my purse for ready access and will upgrade both as time dictates.

    I do hope there’s always an e-ink version available. Annoying to have to put something away because my eyes are starting to twitch or I can’t see the screen past natural sunlight.

  4. I have a smartphone, an ipad (my daughter gave it to me because she likes her Acer Iconia thingy better), a laptop, and my Kindle Paperwhite. The laptop is for writing, the ipad is for surfing, and the smartphone is for well, making me less lost (GPS) and talking.

    As for reading, my Kindle is my precious:) and probably always will be, because I’ve tried reading on the ipad, but the thing weighs a ton when I just want to curl up and read. The smartphone gives me a squinty headache.

    I didn’t really plan to dedicate each of these devices to each kind of task. It just worked out that way. I’m all about efficiency, and if something works the way I want it to, like my Kindle, I’ll be a fan for life.

    Also, I’ll be giving the fruit tech to my son and getting an Acer thingy of my own very soon.

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