I decided to embrace eBooks a couple of years ago, but I still wasn't sure about not picking up a REAL book to read. It didn't seem right! It took me another year to finally release my fascination with (and need for) the physical book when I received a Kindle Fire for my birthday last November and instantly fell in love with it.
I'm not so bothered about multitudes and multitudes of apps and the Kindle Fire does have its limitations for some things ie. only a forward facing camera (so picture taking and video taking is a hassle), but the price is way better than Apple's iPad (which would have been my other choice). I also had one specific goal in mind and that was to get back into my reading. An added bonus was the extra media on the Kindle Fire taking it from the humble eReader to an all round tablet and this ensures I can connect easily with fellow readers and writers. It's such a nice easy way to squeeze one of my hobbies (reading) into the hectic schedule that is Life and being able to share passages of books, reviews and comments on Twitter is perfect. I haven't yet fully embraced the world of Google+ and Goodreads is still an unknown, but I'm looking forward to getting more involved with these in conjunction with my reading habits on the Kindle and as part of my broader social media strategy.
Looking at the bigger picture, the struggle for eBook retailers and publishers is not the fact there's so many free books, but the fact there's so much media content to devour - a different kind of distraction. The competition between them has switched so they now have to keep the consumer's attention across all media - books, movies, music, apps - and all in one device.
If you take Amazon and Apple as examples and look at how they operate, they coerce you into their own little worlds of content. Apple is definitely more restrictive and you pay through the nose, but Amazon has clever tactics too. Rather than sell content to push hardware, Amazon makes available hardware to sell all sorts of things.
Speaking from personal experience, I didn't want the Kindle Fire just for eBooks and enhanced eBooks, I also wanted the option to be able to purchase and access digital media.
To conclude this post, I have a great quote from Publishers Weekly: "The future is not about social reading. It's about social content, social experience, and interactive design. As a result, we must focus on the book's place and utility in the broader market of media, as part of a transmedia experience, and release our fascination with the history of the book's form."
Blogging is an amazing concept so here I am giving it a whirl. You'll get words. You'll get pics. Sometimes a vid or two. You'll get tongue in cheek, the odd humble opinion and an honest insight into my travels and writing life. Maybe even a few gems along the way. I'll be musing on home turf as I see more and more of the UK and sharing my experiences further afield on holidays and adventurous trips across the globe.