Reading into the Future
Back then, when you said you wanted to bring reading materials with you, that meant that you had to bring an actual book with you. That was at least 300 pages worth of easily destroyable paper that you had to keep safe in your bag or briefcase. There had to be a way to store books such that they took up as little space as possible, while at the same time were easily accessible. This was the need that the invention of electronic books, otherwise known as e-books, tried to satisfy.
Electronic books offered those advantages and much more. These digital versions of real books became big hits with the customers because they were easily storable, very portable (imagine storing around 500 books on a single compact disc instead of having to carry them individually) and offered a whole host of conveniences such as automated bookmarking and adjustable fonts. Electronic books needed no special hardware aside from a computer and the e-book reading software given by the retailer, although numerous handheld e-book readers are now available on the market and personal data assistants (PDAs) have also proven to be great at serving the same purpose.
Electronic books also became popular because they’re so easy to sell and buy. In comparison to real books, which you’ll have to order, pay for and then have shipped or picked up, e-books can simply be purchased online from a trusted retailer – there are hundreds of them on the web – and then downloaded at your leisure. The only waiting you’ll have to do is while you’re downloading the e-book itself, and that takes mere minutes on most internet connections nowadays. For almost all cases, you could download it for as long as you like because you already paid for the rights to that book. Even if you lose your copy or transfer to another computer, you’ll still have access to the books you bought previously. You also don’t have to worry about defective items because, if you’ll think about it, such a thing doesn’t exist with e-books.
While many online e-book retailers don’t offer returns on e-book formats of novels and similar genres of literature, many self-help retailers have a return policy that also works as their guarantee of quality. It basically allows customers to get a refund for a self-help or instructional e-book if the customer isn’t satisfied.
Because they combine books with today’s technology, e-books are able to offer many conveniences in several aspects that traditional paper books simply cannot. While many will argue that paper books are still important, it cannot be disputed that electronic books are much better and much easier to use for everyday reading. For books, at least, the future is here.