Both of the nation’s leading technology columnists, Walt Mossberg at the Wall Street Journal and David Pogue at the New York Times (Not Yet the Season for a Nook), roasted Barnes and Noble’s ebook reader in their reviews today. Click through and read what the e-sages have to say. Note: you may have to register or subscribe to read the columns. You can also read Walt’s review at his All Things Digital site.
I have no comment yet, because I (like everyone else) have never seen a Nook. In general, I applaud developers of e-book readers and hope this additional product will spur consumer choice, but I think we will still have to wait for Apple’s tablet to get an iPod-class example of e-readers. Of course the biggest obstacle to e-books is not the merit or temporary bug-level of individual models but the predatory nature of the business models. Vendors want to trap consumers in their business model rather than replicate and expand the nature of reading and pocketing a profit along the way.
Don’t be misled, e-books are coming. Partly because of technological advantage, and partly because of blind greed on the part of publishers and retailers. They hope to continue to make profits from owning 85-96% of the retail price for books while keeping the price to consumers at the level of physical books. This cannot continue. Publishers and retailers see making huge profits selling an e-book for $24 and never having to ship, inventory or display a physical object. I can’t see this. But then I never saw all the colored lights in the 70s either.