Originally Posted by Steve Jordan
But with the ongoing problems of non-interchangeable formats from one bookstore to the other, I am still concerned that things could backfire... as in "Whadaya mean, I can't buy from (Barnes & Noble/Amazon/whoever) for my reader? They have the lowest price on the book I want!"
That's when the market takes over. If enough consumers jump in and that particular complaint becomes common enough, the market will adjust. Publishers will try to make sure their content gets onto as many platforms as possible (as is currently happening with mobile device developers). Reading device makers will start to converge on some level of interoperability (as is sorta, kinda thinking about happening now). Consumers will settle for some "good enough" level of content availability on a device chosen for some other reason (looks, brand loyalty, the mythical "cool factor"). Other avenues of distribution will develop that focus on broad device support (in the way that Ingram and Baker & Taylor act as middlemen between publishers and bookstores).
Eventually, some combination of those variables will settle on something that the market determines is "good enough".