E-book subscription services, modeled on companies like Netflix and Pandora, have struggled to convert book lovers into digital binge readers, and some have shut down. Sales of dedicated e-reading devices have plunged as consumers migrated to tablets and smartphones. And according to some surveys, young readers who are digital natives still prefer reading on paper.
I’m what they’d call a ‘hybrid reader’ – I have shelves full of books at home, but also a Kindle1 with more than 100 books on it. I can’t see how people read on tablets – I’ll read books on my phone, but only because I read in short bursts, trying to sneak it into my over-packed schedule. Having the Kindle, a device dedicated to reading and reading alone, helps to make the distinction to my mind that this is time for reading and nothing else.2
- Specifically, a first-gen Paperwhite; it was a first-gen Kindle for years – which I’d still argue is one of the best Kindles ever made – until, sadly, the screen succumbed to the jostling of a backpack full of textbooks and died. ↩
- Plus, the e-ink screen negates the whole ‘screens keep you awake’ factor. ↩