How Different Are E-Readers And Tablet Computers? In Review

When they were first introduced, e-readers attracted gadget heads and other early adopters in the main. However, as soon as prices began to drop and the reader hardware was enhanced, regular book lovers really began to see the promise of the advantages of e-book readers. Most importantly, the e-ink technology display screen offered an excellent reading experience with no back-light and therefore no eye strain. When all's said and done, had the reading experience not been of the highest quality, all of the other features of e-book readers would be irrelevant. However, it was, for the majority of people, as similar to reading text printed on paper as to make no noticeable difference. Many individuals also enjoyed the option of changing the font face and size - an useful function if you've misplaced your reading glasses.

At the end of 2007, Amazon launched its initial Kindle reader. It cost $399 and was an odd looking device, with strange angles and a QWERTY keyboard that was positively quirky. All the same, it was seized upon by early adopters. The original Kindle sold out in less than six hours and stayed unavailable up until April of 2008. It appeared that even Amazon was taken by surprise at the demand for its new gadget. As well as restocking its hardware, Amazon worked doggedly to guarantee that there were an increasing amount of Kindle books readily available for use with the Kindle. By the time the upgraded Kindle 2.0 launched in early 2009, not only was the hardware much enhanced, but it was possible to find almost any book on the New York Times' bestseller list in e-book format.

Writers have also benefited from the e-book reformation. Publishing an e-book is a lot cheaper, easier and quicker than the traditional printing approach. Many authors have decided to self publish their own electronic books, without going anywhere near a regular publishing firm. Obviously there is a huge range in the quality of the writing when it comes to this variety of self published book - having said that, there are a number of self published books in the best seller's listings, so at least some of these works are worthy of publication. At the end of the day, it provides more choice for both readers and authors alike, which has to be be a benefit.

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The very first dedicated e-book reader is generally considered to be the Franklin eBookMan. This appeared way back in 1999, but it didn't use the e-ink display screen which characterises, and to a sizable extent defines, modern-day e-book readers. It struggled as a result of a shortage of e-books to read onit and manufacturing and development stopped in 2002.

The next significant development in e-readers arrived in the shape of the Sony PRS-500 reader, introduced in September of 2006 and thought of by many to be the first truly commercial e-reader. It possessed a 6", e-ink technology display screen, but still experienced a scarcity of suitable e-books. All the same, it was recognisable as a contemporary e-reader - there are most likely still operating today.

Almost the only parties who really did not appear to be fired up, or at least not in a positive way, regarding e-books and e-readers were the large publishing houses. There were a few altercations involving big publishing companies and booksellers, notably Amazon, pertaining to e-book pricing, as well as the timing of e-book launches. The outdated publishing regimen would normally see the launch of a hard-cover publication followed, a number of months later typically, by the launch of a less costly paperback edition. Both book vendors and the public preferred to see the release of an e-book variation simultaneous along with the hardback launch - and they wanted the e-book to be notably cheaper than the hardback. It was a genuine concern for publishing companies who earned a very high percentage of their profits based on the highly-priced hardback release.

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