The first Kindle from Amazon was launched in 2007 and all its stock was sold out within less than six hours flat. Other competitors such as Barnes and Noble also followed with their own Nook Color e-reader in 2009.
There are contrary reports on the popularity of e-books so far. While one study said that just one ebook was sold for every five print books in 2010, Amazon in May said they now sell more Kindle ebooks than all other print books – paperbacks and hardbacks – combined.
Whosoever is true, but the fact here is that e-books are selling well and in good numbers. So after all, why are these e-book reading devices are selling in huge numbers?
While there are power users who like to have all the functionalities of multipurpose devices such as tablets, there is a different segment of users who just want an affordable device for limited media consumption, such as reading books – and Kindle and Nook are targeting these very set of users.
The e-book readers display content in a different manner and not like the print edition of the books. The e-book reading devices allow the users to set their fonts, the size and style – and once it has been set, all the books look the same.
So whether the author has changed or the book’s appearance has changed, it will look the same to the users on an e-book. In contrast, each printed book is different in some sense and gives the user a unique feel. This is the same feature that attracts users to the e-book.
Nobody challenges those who say print book touch and feel experience is missing on e-book readers. It’s just that the functionalities offered by the e-readers are way beyond what users get on the print editions.
The e-books have simply increased the scope of reading for the users. Beside e-books, users can consume websites, blogs, newspapers and do some other reading on these devices.
So overall, the whole reading ecosystem is accessible to the readers, so they can choose to read whatever they want or on any device they want to use.