Will e-Book Readers Last?

With Amazon’s Kindle being so popular, other companies have rushed to produce their own e-Book Reader. Barnes and Noble’s offering, the Nook, is also quickly becoming very popular amongst the people who want to read their books without having to haul them around everywhere. However, other devices simply are not faring quite as well. Are we going to see these devices fade away, or are they around for the long haul?

Consumers want one thing from any device they buy… they want it to work. In the case of an e-Book Reader, they want to see a book they are interested in, purchase it, and then read it. That sounds simple enough, right? Sadly, it doesn’t always work that way. Many readers require specific file formats in order to have a book magically appear on their screen. Too often, the smaller companies’ versions of this tech wonder don’t even have very many selections available to choose from!

If I were to purchase an e-Book Reader, I’d want to find any – and every – book I am interested in, be able to quickly buy it, and have it work on my device. That’s the way it should be… but that isn’t really happening. Amazon and B&N are lucky in this regard… they have millions – and billions! – of digital titles available for our reading pleasure. They are doing things right.

Imagine going a step beyond this, though. Why must everything be so proprietary? I know, I know… they want us to only purchase our books from them. After all, they are in the business of making money, just like the rest of us. But how awesome would it be to buy an e-Book Reader from one company, and then be able to purchase books from ANY company that sells them… and have it work on our machine?! Were any company to come out with a device that can do this, I’d be the first one in line waving my credit card around wildly.

Do you have an e-Book Reader of any type? What have your experiences been with it? Do you feel that these gadgets will soon go by the wayside, or will they only continue to improve over time?