Do you have an eBook?

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Do you have an eBook (or tablet)?   

While at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES2011) this year, CNET summed up the tablet’s future by saying it is one of the three devices (smart phones, connected TV, tablets) that will grab content floating around internet space once accessible only by the PC.

The tablets on the market today are more than just electronic books.  Along with downloading a favorite book, the new tablets give you access to music, movies, periodicals, and news feeds.  You can also find endless internet based application with this light weight computing device.  And it is fast!  A file transfer for an average sized book takes less than sixty seconds. No more driving to the bookstore or library. Very green!

There are lots of eBook services out there for the “e-bibliophile”. (I had to say it.)  All the big retailers –Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Borders, for example – offer eBooks with prices ranging from $6 to $15 dollars.  Ouch! But it is much less than the $15-$30 price tag on paper books.

And, there are service providers which promote free books.  Be aware, when registering on their websites, credit card information is required – just in case you want to purchase for pay eBooks and other applications on the site.   

Finally, there are public domain services, meaning the works “….are intangible to private ownership and/or which are available for use by members of the public.” (WikiSource)  Think works of William Shakespeare and Isaac Newton.   WikiSource and Project Gutenberg are two examples. WikkiSource reports that it hosts over 160,000 works and is a great place to find classic literature and other non-fiction topics.  You are not going to find the latest David Baldacci novel on these sites.

Just as they provide access to thousands of audio books, the public library comes to the rescue again with eBooks.  Libraries are striking deals with on-line eBook service providers to supply their readers with current titles in the various eBook file formats. There is no fee.  All you need is a current library card and an internet connection.  If this is a source you would like to use, contact your local library and ask when eBooks are scheduled to be on the shelf. Let’s hope it’s soon.  And you should be able to check out the latest David Baldacci novel, Deliver Us From Evil.

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2 Responses to Do you have an eBook?

  1. Tamsey says:

    I bought a Kindle last fall. My husband, who adores his iPad, suggested that I might like an iPad instead. The iPad offers all the e-book functionality and a lot more. But you pay a lot more for it. I didn’t need or want to “surf the net” with my device. I just wanted to read books. And I like reading books outside, where the iPad is difficult to use because of the glare. The Kindle is perfect for my needs and I love, love, love it.
    It’s interesting that you should bring up this topic today. I have heard two relevant news articles on NPR just today. The first was about Apple launching an e-subscriptions service through their app store. Sounds great! But, the article talked about how Apple has written in so many restrictions that the periodical publishers may decide against selling through Apple. First, Apple is asking for 30% of the subscription price. In addition, the publishers are not allowed to put any links in the magazines. For example, articles and ads can’t have links to take the reader to an on-line store. I guess we’ll have to see where that goes. Those glossy magazines will look a lot better on the iPad than on my Kindle. I’m not a magazine reader, so I’m still quite happy with my Kindle.
    The second article I heard was on the bankruptcy filing of Borders book stores. Certainly the downfall of Borders is linked to the blossoming electronic media market. They have been given $550 million to get them through reorganization. I think it will be very interesting to see how Borders evolves.

    • Thanks for the insight on your experience with the Kindle. You are right, the glossy periodicals will look fantastic on the newer tablets – iPAD, Samsung, Sony.
      The Border’s story will play out in the next couple of days. They were late getting into the eBook trade.

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