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Old 09-14-2009, 10:08 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Terisa de morgan View Post
And what happens if I want a phone which is ONLY an iPhone. I don't want a camera (sorry, it isn't going to be better than my Lumix TZ6), I don't want a MP3 player (I don't usually listen to music or audio-books), I don't want a radio, I don't want to play games... so, only phone. Same for e-reader. I don't say all to be in this way, but to be able to choose what I want.
I agree! Another thing: my device breaks. Now I can't make a phone call, pictures, listen to MP3's, read and consult my calendar.

I prefer separate devices for various functions. A phone for phone business with maybe some PDA functions, a PDA for planning business, with some ebook reader functions, an ebook reader for my books, and a camera. I'll have a MP3 player four my audiobooks, one that will fit easily in my pocket.
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Old 09-14-2009, 10:12 AM   #17
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The answer is easy, the future is Star Trek Look at that and I think you're basically looking at the same for technology. Discrete communication devices worn as part of clothing, tablet like, portable mutli-function information screens. Convergence is inevitable, a lot of people are already nearly there (I was one of them with my itouch for awhile and the more I think of it, the less likely I'll go for a single function device for my next reader). It won't take too much of a leap to have a portable device that does all what we need and can be wirelessly connected to peripherals such as screens, keyboards, HD's once we're back at home, thus eradicating the need for a desktop and a portable device.

The future is looking rather spiffy, old chap
I seem to remember watching a documentary a while back on how much of the tech we are using today has been derived from Star Trek. What with mobile phones etc etc

And I would love to have one of the tablet like thingys they use in Voyager for instance.

Which would probably be quite easy to accomplish. Touchscreen Oled anyone?
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Old 09-14-2009, 10:44 AM   #18
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In terms of the occasional reader, the converged device is already here. People, who use ereader, Stanza, Mobi, etc. on their smart phones (and PDAs) to read while waiting for a meeting to start, or for the bus/train, are unlikely to upgrade to a larger format device. The reason they choose converged devices in the first place was the convenience of a pocket sized device that could do so much.

In contrast, I still remain a skeptic about the near term evolution of the dedicated ebook reader into a converged device. UMPCs and tablets have been around for years now, both types of device were capable of running ebook software. Neither has taken either the ebook world nor the computing world by storm. Devices with 5-7" screens are simply too large to be super convenient for those who are used to the 2.3-3.5" screens of smart phones and they are too small to replace the more fully featured computers that users already have. Even in Netbooks, the trend has been to move to 9, 10 and even 11" displays.

To date, the one function where the 5-7" screen seems to be optimal is as a book reader. Its small and light enough to be easily held for long periods of time, but large enough to allow immersive reading. Combine that with the advantages (for reading) of eInk technology, and well it easy to see why dedicated ebook readers remain the one area that is still dominated by devices of that size.

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Old 09-14-2009, 11:18 AM   #19
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I have read the ASUS device is going to be sub AU$200, which is more the price I, as a consumer, would be prepared to pay. Though there is no specifics about what ebook format it is going to support.
What?! D'oh! If only I'd waited ... although that means I'll be able to point fellow gadget nerds on a budget towards e-readers, yay.
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Old 09-14-2009, 12:55 PM   #20
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I agree with all those. Single function gadgets don't have a place in the mainstream with the success of things like the iPhone, netbooks etc.

Something that can be a great eReader and also do internet, e-mail, movies, music, games etc. etc. is what will really take off and expand the market for eBooks.

There may be dedicated readers for a long time, but they will be a small part of the eBook market in the future IMO.
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Old 09-14-2009, 01:12 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by dmaul1114 View Post
Something that can be a great eReader and also do internet, e-mail, movies, music, games etc. etc. is what will really take off and expand the market for eBooks.
At the current state of the art the only thing that does all that is a netbook, and it does none of them as well as something designed for the job. Maybe someday, but not with the currently available technology. Unless batteries improve capacity by more than an order of magnitude, even being able to overcome the problem of disparate optimum screen size requirements for those tasks will not be enough to overcome the advantages of devices designed to do a smaller subset of tasks and do them well. There will probably always be people who will accept the mediocrity of an overgeneralized device, but there will always be others who want the performance that only a device optimized for the task can provide.

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There may be dedicated readers for a long time, but they will be a small part of the eBook market in the future IMO.
The future is a very tricky thing.
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Old 09-14-2009, 01:15 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by dmaul1114 View Post
I agree with all those. Single function gadgets don't have a place in the mainstream with the success of things like the iPhone, netbooks etc.

Something that can be a great eReader and also do internet, e-mail, movies, music, games etc. etc. is what will really take off and expand the market for eBooks.

There may be dedicated readers for a long time, but they will be a small part of the eBook market in the future IMO.
Actually, I would argue that "history" shows that multi-purpose devices don't last.

How many people will be listening to music or reading eBooks on the iPhone (that they own today) in 5 years time? I'm pretty sure a lot fewer than who will be listening to music on their by then 6-8 years old iPod.

The problem with multi-purpose devices is that when one aspect of the functionality fails to deliver to the user's full expectations... the whole device gets replaced... so when the iPhone enthusiast wants a new cellphone, they'll be unavoidably switching music players as well... until they get fed up, and start to use a dedicate (single purpose) music player instead.

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Old 09-14-2009, 01:23 PM   #23
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It occurred to me this morning that we can look at pocket calculators as an example.

I saw my first pocket calculator in 1972. As I recall, it cost $89, which was a chunk of change back then. All it did was add, subtract, multiply and divide. It had red LED numerals.

Today you can still get a pocket calculator that only adds, subtracts, multiplies and divides. And it has the superior LCD numerals. It costs a dollar at Walmart. My recent job required us to have a calculator with us at all times. I and others used to pick up a number of these to make sure that we were never without one.

So even though much fancier calculators are now available, the market still exists for the basic model. And at a buck, who can turn it down?
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Old 09-14-2009, 01:28 PM   #24
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So even though much fancier calculators are now available, the market still exists for the basic model. And at a buck, who can turn it down?
And, to take it a step further, there are myriad personal organizers, cellphones, and multi-use devices out there that do calculations... but those who require the use of a calculator (away from their computer screen) will generally use an actual (non-multi-purpose) calculator... because all those other devices that also work as a calculator are substandard for frequent/heavy use situations.

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Old 09-14-2009, 06:44 PM   #25
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I agree with all those. Single function gadgets don't have a place in the mainstream with the success of things like the iPhone, netbooks etc.
That's just not true, when the single function device is a lot better than the multi-function device at doing its single function they still do just fine, just look at how many cameras, mp3 players etc. that are still sold despite other devices also having those features.


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Something that can be a great eReader and also do internet, e-mail, movies, music, games etc. etc. is what will really take off and expand the market for eBooks.
The best ways to increase the ebook market are quite simple, lower prices on the hardware and ebooks combined with better mainstream marketing.


Quote:
There may be dedicated readers for a long time, but they will be a small part of the eBook market in the future IMO.
A long time in the future they may be a small part of the market, but for a number of years they are going to be far the largest active part of the market, other devices may theoretically make up a larger part of the market sooner, but simply having an ebook reader on a smartphone or netbook is nowhere near the same thing as one being used actively.
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Old 09-14-2009, 09:29 PM   #26
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Something that can be a great eReader and also do internet, e-mail, movies, music, games etc. etc. is what will really take off and expand the market for eBooks.
A computer in other words.
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Old 09-14-2009, 09:35 PM   #27
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A computer in other words.
Indeed. And we have computers like that. And yet the vast majority of those on this forum have purchased a dedicated device that is either single-purpose, or substandard enough at secondary functions as to be well near useless for them.

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Old 09-14-2009, 10:18 PM   #28
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Indeed. And we have computers like that. And yet the vast majority of those on this forum have purchased a dedicated device that is either single-purpose, or substandard enough at secondary functions as to be well near useless for them.

- Ahi
Believe me, if there was a multipurpose tablet whose screen had all the positive qualities of eInk I would almost certainly pick that over a dedicated device.
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Old 09-14-2009, 10:29 PM   #29
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Believe me, if there was a multipurpose tablet whose screen had all the positive qualities of eInk I would almost certainly pick that over a dedicated device.
I don't doubt it.

But most people wouldn't and won't.

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Old 09-14-2009, 10:35 PM   #30
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A computer in other words.
No, something smaller than even a laptop. And lighter since it doesn't need a physical keyboard. Just an 8-10 inch touch screen that can handle all of my net use (outside of forums) short e-mails with a touch keyboard, watch videos, be a good reader etc.

Something like that I may actually carry around--unlike my laptops which stay at home unless I'm traveling out of town for more than a weekend and my Kindle as I don't read enough to carry it around everywhere.

Give me tablet that does all that, and I'll take it most everywhere. Especially if you can annotate PDFs with a stylus as easily as writing on paper--then I may stop printing out scholarly articles and actually make the e switch with them.

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I don't doubt it.

But most people wouldn't and won't.

- Ahi
Most people on this site? Sure.

The mainstream? You're kidding yourself. Most would never buy a dedicated reader as they don't read enough to spend ANY money on something like that. But many would be interested in a multimedia tablet that can surf the net, do e-mail, chat, texts, videos, music, games, etc. AND be more portable than even a netbook. And they may buy some books or magazines on it and help expand the market for ebooks beyond tech inclined avid readers.


I get the appeal of dedicated readers--but in the end of the day the used Kindle 1 was a bit of a waste for someone like me that just reads a few hours a week before sleeping. I like the convenience of not buying books I'll read once, or hassle with crappy inner city libraries etc. But I'd ditch it in a heart beat for a more functional multipurpose device. I don't read long enough to really need the e-ink for eye strain or battery life.

Last edited by dmaul1114; 09-14-2009 at 10:39 PM.
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