Thursday, April 1, 2010

Are e-books taking over? Will there still be bookstores 10 years from now?

Seeing as e-readers like the Kindle and Nook are taking over, many questions come to mind. Will the new technology take over physical books that all bookstores will be gone in future years? And, will bookstores, survive seeing as bookstores aren't as crowded as they once were.

Everybody, I'm sure has a different take on this subject, but lets look at the possibilities.

(Factual not opinionated)

Reasons Why E-Books might take over:
  • Looking at the big picture, e-books are acquired easily. From your fingertips you can download an e-book through an e-reader or a computer reader. Saves gas money.
  • Saves time. For busy people a trip to the bookstore takes too much time. So, they prefer using an e-reader. It's killing bookstores!
  • E-books are cheaper. And, in this economy, everybody is looking save some cash.
  • E-books may become the new trend. Now, that technology is evolving its hyping up people, making them want what's popular the most.
  • Borders is already coming to an end. There's no telling if the other bookstores will survive.
  • E-books save room space.
  • Nothing will ever beat the scent, the feel, the excitement, of browsing a bookstore on your hand (for e-book fanatics).
  • Lack of people going to bookstores.
  • No more bookstores in all the malls.
  • People want fast and easy e-books offer this.
  • Technology is becoming a vital tool to everyday life.
  • They are really useful for students and professionals.
Reasons Why E-Books might NOT take over:
  • Physical books have survived the test of time for centuries. It may survive this devastating blow, as well.
  • E-books are competition over physical books, but physical books are on high demand, as well.
  • Old-Fashioned people are most-likely going to always want them. They won't convert to palm hold e-readers.
  • There's no other feeling the same like holding a physical book over holding an e-reader, it feels superficial, to some.
  • E-books lack identity, for some people.
  • Although, bookstores are significantly emptier than previous years, books are sold relatively cheaper online.
Cyberspace, technology, and all new trends are indeed becoming part of our lives. Nowadays, people don't even have to buy the newspaper, they can just read news on their phone, internet, and digitally. On another note, bookstores are sinking on their own. Everytime, I visit my big Barnes & Noble in my area there's only 1-3 people buying books. Although, I know books are a whole lot cheaper online. This may be why!

Q: Are e-books taking over?
Somewhat! My opinion is yes, e-book users are growing. But, probably not enough to take over completely. Although, for sure e-books are gaining a significantly large popularity.

Q: Will there still be bookstores 10 years from now?
My opinion is, bookstores are not doing, so well. It wouldn't surprise me if one day our only way to get books is online. Or, through e-readers. Chances are small, maybe in 25 years this may happen.

Verdict: We have no knowledge of what will prevail, e-books or physical books. At this early stage it's hard to tell. If bookstores die, we can probably acquire physical books online. And, about e-books, I can only hope physical books will prevail, as they are my personal preference.Whatever happens in the end, I believe people will always share a love for reading. If e-books take over, I'm sure old timers will convert. I would be willing to!

Whatever happens reading will survive!

Remember one thing: Great writers produce stories and those stories carry messages and those messages reach us via paper or digitally. A book is what's inside it not what it's made of.


Jami said...

I don't think physical books will ever go away, but I do think you are right that we might be buying all our books online one day. Which when I do buy physical books, I have been buying them online more often lately to save money. But I do love going into book stores and indulging in the awesomeness of all those titles in one place. It would be terribly sad to see book stores go away.

Book ♥ Soulmates said...

This is a great post and it brings up some great points!!

I can see and even understand the appeal of e-books. We live in world that demands a lot of technology and this is just one more way to make something even more convenient so I can imagine that many people will turn to e-books as their primary form of literature.

However, I personally LOVE my physical books!! I love looking at my shelf and seeing it stuffed to the gills with all my goodies and I take pride in my collection. I also love the smell of the paper *yes, I sniff books*. I will occasionally share my books with TRUSTED friends and my mom and I think it'd be a bit difficult to share with only e-books.

There are pros and cons for each. I just hope that physical books will still be around during my lifetime!


Michelle said...

I REALLY hope not. This is kind of a fear of mine. For me, nothing can replace the feel of a book in my hands. Technology is definitely a good thing but in this case, for me, it's not better by any means.

BookFanatic said...

That's interesting. I'd never want physical books to disappear. I wouldn't be willing to convert to e-books!

Diana said...

I hope that physical books never disappear! I prefer to have the book in my hand and be able to turn the last page of the book.

TheBookMogul said...

I like your post, the future of books and bookselling is a really threat to the industry at the moment. I personally own a Sony E-Reader and I like reading books on it, but Dad brought it for me thinking that it would stop me buying physical books, but it hasn't.

I like the idea of e-readers for people that travel because it is an easier way of taking books away on holiday instead of taking lots of books with them.

Since buying my e-reader in September last year I have continued to buy phyiscal books because the authors that I like to read don't publish on ebook form.

All in all I really like physical books and I wish I hadn't bought an ereader because I LOVE BOOKS!!!!!!!!!

creatingdiscussion said...

e-books taking over – a librarian’s nightmare!!! I sure hope not. I think that the price of the devices still makes them inaccessible for most people, and the format (a screen) is not all that appealing. One of my fellow library students said so beautifully the other day about e-readers, “I’m not taking a $200 + book to the beach,” because that’s essentially what they are. I know it seems like they are everywhere, but I think that’s just creative marketing and scared publishers making a lot of hype. I’m just not 100% sure they are a problem as of yet, I think most people still seem them as a bit of a useless luxury. Amazon and online booksellers are a bigger problem, and are a bigger threat to the publishing industry. Thanks for this wonderful post. It’s very important to talk about these type of things : )

librarypat said...

I'm afraid I'm one of the Old-fashioned people who will always prefer real books. The e-books have their place, even in libraries. However, e-readers raise an environmental question. Electronic waste is a highly polluting problem worldwide. Books can be and are works of art. Picking up an old book is like turning the clock back for a trip to the past. The craftsmanship, of some of these books is wonderful - pictures, lithographs, colored in prints, tooled & pressed covers. I like the feel of a book. Paperbacks are very affordable. You can take them anywhere and not worry about them being damaged. Yes, they take up more room than an e-book, but they are easily recycled and are made from renewable resources.
As stated in the post above, there is also the cost to consider. You can get a lot of books for $200.
There is also the problem of e-books being shared. Yes a print book can be shared, but one person at a time. an e-book can be sent out to hundreds or thousands of people destroying the authors chance at good sales and profits.

Anne said...

I think it's possible that e-readers will rule the world, but I prefer books. I prefer books to e-readers because 1. E-Readers are really expensive, 2. You have to buy the e-book, even if you own the actual book, And 3. Because e-readers don't smell like book. :)
But then there are the pros to e-readers, like you said. They're cheaper and more enviroment safe.

browneyedgirl said...

I don't think I'll ever go over to the e-book. There's just something about holding a book in my hands that I love. My mom and I have talked about this a couple times, and she agrees with me too. Besides, an e-reader just doesn't make me feel like I'm reading a book, just something else on a screen.

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