Confessions of a fickle ebook fanboy

Summary:I read one to three ebooks a week, as I have for over a decade. I started with the pioneering Peanut Press, and have continued through the Kindle technology I use today. I haven't read more than a handful of novels in paper form in a decade, and those were gifts.

I love reading ebooks, and have done so since the infancy of the digital publishing industry. I read one to three novels a week, as I have for over a decade, and every one of them is an ebook. I started with the pioneering Peanut Press, and have continued through the Kindle technology I use today. I don't think I've read more than a handful of books in paper form over the past decade, and those were gifts.

The Peanut Press was started in 1998 to leverage the Palm Pilot screen for entertainment. I bought a Palm Pilot xv for the sole purpose of reading ebooks from Peanut Press, and never regretted the purchase. I stayed with them through the transitional years, when Peanut Press morphed into Palm Digital Media, eReader and eventually into the Barnes & Noble family where it resides today. My entire library starting with Peanut Press is still available to me today, with the first purchase I made on March 28, 2000 still there for me to download should I wish to read it again on either eReader or the Nook.

Even though my loyalty with eReader goes back over a decade, I admit I don't use it now. I have totally switched over to the Kindle ecosystem, and strictly because of the reading experience. Amazon debuted one feature with the Kindle system at launch that won me over almost immediately, and I haven't looked back.

The killer feature is WhisperSync, the technology employed in all Kindle readers and apps that makes the entire library instantly available from any device. Customers like me who use multiple devices to read books can pick up any device using the Kindle technology and instantly start reading. There is no struggling to sideload content as was the case with other apps, nor is there a need to remember the last reading position on another device. WhisperSync does all of that automatically, and it's significant enough to get me to drop a near decade-long business relationship.

The years of scrambling to make sure that the book I was currently reading was on the device I was grabbing to take with me are over. The hours spent paging through books to find where I left off on another device are a thing of the past. Now I grab any device I want, and I've used hundreds over the years, and simply read. This alone makes the reading experience as good as it can be, without the hassles.

Competitors to the Kindle must duplicate this feature, and implement it just as fully as Amazon. There can be no barriers to the interaction with the library or the reader, or the customer's bookshelf will look like the one above. I am proof positive of that.

Topics: Hardware, Mobility

About

James Kendrick has been using mobile devices since they weighed 30 pounds, and has been sharing his insights on mobile technology for almost that long. Prior to joining ZDNet, James was the Founding Editor of jkOnTheRun, a CNET Top 100 Tech Blog that was acquired by GigaOM in 2008 and is now part of that prestigious tech network. James' w... Full Bio

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