Can the Dedicated eBook Reader Survive the Tablet Onslaught?
I must admit that I have never owned a dedicated eBook reader. I have bought the Kindle eReader as a gift, but never for myself. I have always read eBooks on my computer, smartphone or on a tablet. In a recent conversation I was asked by a friend whether or not they should buy an eReader or a tablet to read their eBooks. My immediate thought was that they would be better off buying a tablet as it can do a lot more than just an eReader. From general conversation this appears to be the prevailing belief among many readers.
On the other hand, I know of many people who love their Kindle and would not want to let go of it. The convenience, ability to store thousands of eBooks and seamless downloading of purchased eBooks from the Kindle store to the eReader is not something they wish to change.
Undoubtedly Amazon’s Kindle has been a huge success due to the ability to immediately download eBooks from the store onto the eReader immediately after purchase. Amazon has blown away its competition with many competing eReaders being discontinued. In recent news, Sony announced that they would be getting out of the eBook reader market. This was not any surprise to those within the industry.
So Who is Left?
There are now two major players in the eReader market – Amazon and Kobo. Amazon dominates the market and will continue to do so. The question for Amazon is for how long? How long will readers want to carry around both a tablet and an eReader when you can combine both in one device?
It has and always will come down to personal preference. While the Kindle continues to be successful it appears that the eReader in general is falling out of favour as consumers move towards the tablet.
As an author, you will have to get used to the constant change in the devices people use for reading eBooks. This could affect formatting, how you market your eBook and identifying what device your target audience uses to read your eBooks. What will remain constant is that you must produce a great eBook that standout from the competition and you must be able to make sure your audience knows about you!