Magazines on E-paper E-reader Displays 'Approaching the Tipping Point,' Says Expert
INBOX: What can magazine publishers start doing now in order to capitalize on this phenomenon?
HAMPSHIRE: The publisher must:
1. Be fully ingrained in all aspects of digital magazines and digital publishing. Publishers must bear in mind that regardless of the performance of early digital magazines, the arrival of these new e-paper-based e-readers is going to change the marketplace fundamentally, especially with the arrival of large-screen, high-quality color devices.
2. Be fully ingrained in the repurposing of content so that it fits on any screen, including e-readers. This is just as valid today with digital magazines on a PC as it will be with e-readers.
3. Be ready to distribute content on e-readers (and separately tablet devices like the rumored Apple Tablet) within the next 24 months. The nature of this technology and the power of reading paginated content in an enabling digital context will help to continue the rapid growth and development of this market.
INBOX: What are some of the most effective uses of e-paper e-readers in publishing today? What seems to resonate with consumers?
HAMPSHIRE: Undoubtedly what resonates most with the consumer today is books, and e-book editions are starting to outsell their print equivalents. It is the ability to instantly buy an e-book, to be able to store and carry a whole library in a single portable device, to take notes, increase text size, look up definitions, bookmark pages, but above all it has been the arrival of e-paper display technology with its paper-like reading quality in ambient light that has been the real attraction.
Magazine publishers need to stop believing that the e-reader "threat" is still far away and have to start realizing that this future is rushing toward them at great speed. In 2012, we will see the first real high-quality color "magazine" e-readers with magazine-size displays.