Why Apple should make an e-book reader?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by physicistjedi, Apr 26, 2007.

  1. physicistjedi macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2007
    #1
    I believe Apple should make an e-book reader with an e-paper display that you can write on it. Currently there is only one product like that in the market, iRex iLiad. It uses an eInk display and Wacom tablet on it for writing. Though the machine is slow (2 sec to turn a page), software is not so good (it doesn''t even support all hardware features like pressure sensitive sketching, no zoom in pdf etc.) and quite expensive ($700). Sony has an ebook reader but it doesn't support enough formats, nasty DRM, no Mac support etc. This is where Apple would shine. They can build it in mass quantities, put a better chip (but something that wouldn't need a fan) and Apple quality software. It would be a dream machine both for customers and Apple for several reasons.

    *All college students will buy one. One could put all the textbooks in and take class notes, take everywhere. It shouldn't support email or web. This is for reading and writing only. No distraction, just simplicity.

    *All academics, attorneys, anybody who print out a lot of materials to read will buy one. It will also be good for the environment.

    *All graphic artists will buy one, as it will be a cheap sketching tablet with a screen

    *Many casual readers will buy one and Apple can sell e-books at the iTunes store. It might turn into a great market.

    All the technology is already out there just waiting for the right implementation. Apple even already has handwriting recognition technology.

    So do you agree? Can we convince Apple to do this?
     
  2. jamesi macrumors 6502a

    jamesi

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2005
    Location:
    Davis CA
    #2
    sincerely doubt theyll ever go for this. sony makes a good one too. i still prefer paper books, but ive always longed for the ability to enter a keyword and search the book for that quote or point u need for a paper
     
  3. physicistjedi thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2007
    #3
    I doubt too that they will do it unless the community push really hard. But I just wanted to give a try.

    I don't like Sony's reader for several reasons as I said. First of all they don't give Mac software, its screen is not large enough for letter size pdf documents and you can't write on it.

    I believe Apple can do much better and get great revenue from online ebook store.
     
  4. jamesi macrumors 6502a

    jamesi

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2005
    Location:
    Davis CA
    #4
    haha, i would love it if apple struck gold selling e copies of books, bring literature back!
     
  5. jng macrumors 65816

    jng

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    Location:
    Germany
    #5
    No they won't. Neither will textbook publishers want e-books necessarily. They make lots of money selling new editions, which means I can't buy used. E-books would get rid of the used market. To effectively do e-books for college, you'd need DRM.... (at least from point of view of publisher, imo).

    I barely buy books as is. Only freshman buy all textbooks. And when I really use textbooks, to study, write papers, etc, I like several books in front of me - not doable with ONE table.


    Honestly, I couldn't care less. I wouldn't buy any such product from anybody, including Apple. I love my books.
     
  6. jng macrumors 65816

    jng

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    Location:
    Germany
    #6

    I use Amazon's "Search this book" feature sometimes for that purpose. Also google's book project should also help in the future.
     
  7. DMS190 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2007
    #7
    They are halfway there.

    From what I have read/seen of the iPhone, Apple is halfway there to an ebook reader -- the "iBook Reader."

    The major thing they have to do is make a larger screen -- quite a bit bigger -- and maybe from eInk. They already have a lock on the best distribution system i.e iTunes Store.

    The cultural significance of the iBook Reader would dwarf the iPod. And Steve Jobs doesn't merely want money - he wants cultural significance.

    Patience.
     
  8. zflauaus macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2004
    #8
    The cultural significance. The cultural significance?!?! Where do you get this that an eBook reader will "dwarf the iPod?" Seriously, more people are interested in listening to music on the go than reading books on the go. When was the last time you saw someone take a book over an iPod? Plus the addition that you can listen to books on the iPod through Audible adds that.

    There is no way Apple would make an eBook reader. There is no demand for it whatsoever.

    Wow. This thread... Just... Wow...
     
  9. DMS190 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2007
    #9
    Wow indeed

    Let's not focus on whether Apple will or will not add eBook reading capabilies to an iPhone as the iPhone can already read web pages so I don't think that there is a whole lot more to discuss -- the issue is decided. You can download text to an iPhone; the only issue is ease of use.

    Nor is the question about whether reading on an iPhone will be popular as it seems fairly obvious it will, at least so some degree, considering the negatives of small screen-size. (I mean for god's sake, how can one say you don't like reading on a screen when this whole Macrumors site as well as hundreds of thousands more are built around reading on a screen. Why fight it?) Whether anyone particular person holds out hostility to the idea of an "eBook reader" is completly irrelevant.

    The more interesting question is cultural significance, which by the way is NOT "popularity."

    There are parallels between book/magazine publishers and book publishers. But the impact of an eBook reader on the former will be far greater on the latter. What did the iPod do? It gave you a better way to listen to music out of the home than you had with the CD player. Great and obviously extraordinarily POPULAR. But I suggest that WHEN Apple adds a larger screen and better capability to read text to the iPhone it will transform the very definition of "the book" into a far more dynamic and interactive communications device than a static and fixed book could ever be. The is not new ground so I won't go into the details. But the possibilities for real-time "support" of an eBook by its author (not totally unlike support for a software program) will change the author's job considerably.

    The iPod did NOT transform music itself. The iPod did not change the relationship of the listener and the musician in terms of the work of art...I don't see people writing to musicians and telling them they played a note wrong etc etc. You'll have that in spades with dynamic eBooks.

    The iPhone will need a bigger screen and other improvements in order to transform the nature of the book, an item largely unchanged in 600 years. That's big. That's why Steve Jobs -- bless his ego -- will want to do it.
     

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