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eReader Pros and Cons

Why buy an eReader? What are the advantages of eBook Readers?

by John Winger climair sonniboy Sonnenschutz Hyundai.

I must admit that a couple of years ago I just didnt think eReaders would make it in the marketplace. I opined that people who love to read books would not give them up for an electronic advice - in a way an artificial experience since Books have been printed on paper or papyrus for thousands of years. Can an electronic device make people feel comfortable enough that they will turn to electronic Books, I thought. Let's count the advantages and disadvantages to eReaders and let the facts decide.

Pro Advantages of eReaders over printed Books:

Convenience and Time Savings

It's not difficult to argue that eReaders are more convenient since the eBook can be ordered and instantaneously downloaded from your desk at work or from home, or from the local coffee shop through wifi connection or from the vacation cruise ship (if you have a 3G eReader). Think of the time savings, the browsing done online instead of having to drive to the store. What of the immediate gratification of ordering the eBook and receiving it, rather than having to wait for it to be shipped or driving to the book store to buy it.

Cost Savings; Will the eReader save me money

Some people claim that due to owning an eReader, they actually do not save any money because they buy more books. That's a good thing right? You own more books, you read more, you're gaining intelligence and knowledge.

But all things being equal with your book buy habits let's look at the following example:

Let's say you buy two books a month from the local book store, a hard cover that runs about $25 and a paperback for $8. Now consider making the same purchases on an ereader, the hard covers usually run about $12 and the paper back for $6. That comes out to about $396 per year at the bookstore and $216 for the ereader, a savings just on the books alone of $180. Now, if two of those books are classics you'll be saving that amount also as most classics are free. Add another $18 to $26 savings for classics. Now, let's add a couple of books for those books you buy but dont read the entire book due to disappointment, style or topic. Since a sample 1st chapter is often available for most books that saves another couple books a year - lets put the value at $20. All totalled cost savings using the eReader = $226/year savings. And dont forget to add something in there for gas and convenience either.

Travel Smaller and Lighter

In this day and age when travellers try to pack all their belongings into a carry on bag and briefcase (with laptop), space and weight savings are a big deal. Some eReaders weigh in at less than half a pound. This is a huge advantage as you avoid, magazines, books, and even periodicals - all organized the way you want.

Font Size Flexibility

eReaders normally come with between 2 to 4 different type fonts and with around 6 various sizes. This especially gives some flexibility to those that prefer larger type font - a feature Grandma might especially appreciate.

Cons/ Disadvantages to eReaders from printed Books

Eyestrain and Eye Fatigue

eInk and ePaper are non-backlit benign electronic print technologies that were designed to avoid eyestrain. The eInk appears just as print and in my opinion, does avoid eye fatigue. Most eReaders employ this technology, but in order to do so must use the eInk screen which currently is not produced with a color format.

LCD screens are also employed by some eReaders, especially those touting color like the Nook Color. The Sharper Image Literati also used an LCD Screen. This screen technology will naturally cause eye fatigue for two reasons: 1) it's a backlit technology so the reader is staring at the light, 2) LCD screen technology uses a refresh rate which imperceptibly causes the screen to redraw itself 60 or more times a second. Fortunately, the brightness can be turned down on most LCD Screen eReaders.

Battery Required

eInk screen eReaders can last for 2 weeks (with the wireless function turned off) with need of a recharge. The best new LCD screen eReaders can last for 8 hours before need of recharge. But of course, good old print books require no battery recharging.

Up front Cost

Of course, eReaders require that big up front cost of between $120 to $249. This is a big drawback for some, but it affords others (like me) the idea opportunity for a nice Christmas present for Mom.

11 Step Guide to Buying an eReader

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