The differences between Kindle e-book reader and print books are as follow:
- Kindle allows readers to read books on a handheld wireless device.
- Kindle saves money and adds convenience because daily newspaper subscription is allowed.
- Turning pages with Kindle is easier especially at crowded places.
- Kindle has less weight if compared to most books or novels.
- Equal to print readability and multi-device integration.
According to Geeks Are Sexy (2009), the majority of age group who uses Kindle is aged 50 - 59. But why the older generation?
The reasons are as follow:
- Older readers particularly appreciate the relative ease of reading text on the large-screen compared with other devices such as smartphones.
- The demographics have been swung by the Oprah effect, with her traditionally older audience following her recommendation.
- The magazines available in Kindle form are particularly popular among older readers.
- Older people are more likely to be avid readers and thus find the Kindle a worthwhile purchase.
- Older people may have more money to spend on the Kindle because their ‘gadget budget’ isn’t eaten up by other devices seen as must-have by younger buyers such as smartphones or laptops.
However, McKeown (2009) said the adoption of e-reader is slower than people think because of the value of e-reader is lower than print books, the manufacturers do not understand the book buyers' demographics, and the pricing of e-reader.
So how do e-readers and print books survive together?
First, the price of an e-reader is from $250 - $400, so not everybody could afford. Then, there are reasons print books are better than digital books:
- Printed books are still available everywhere.
- Books are versatile and re-usable.
- No batteries required.
- There are millions of books titles in print.
- No need to upgrade e-book software.
- Books are cheap.
- Books do not melt or break.
- No DRM (Digital Rights Management).
Not everybody prefers to use e-book reader. Thus, print books still can survive in the market.
Mohns, R 2008, Review: Amazon Kindle, MacInTouch, viewed 18 November 2009, <http://www.macintouch.com/reviews/kindle/>.
CNET editor’s Review 2007, CNET.com, viewed on 18November 2009 <http://reviews.cnet.com/e-book-readers/amazon-kindle/1707-3508_7-32751890.html>.
Kindle finds a mature audience 2009, www.geeksaresexy.net, viewed on 18 November 2009, <http://www.geeksaresexy.net/2009/05/01/kindle-finds-a-mature-audience/>.
McKeown, J 2009, Why E-Reader Adoption Will Be Slower Than People Think, PaidContent.org, viewed on 18 November 2009, <http://paidcontent.org/article/419-why-e-reader-adoption-will-be-slower-than-people-think/>.
Print Books vs. Digital Books n.d., Squidoo.com, viewed on 7 November 2009, <http://www.squidoo.com/print-books-or-digital-books>.