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Friday, 18 November 2011 00:47

eReader market expected to triple in five years

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Worldwide shipments of eReaders will nearly triple from the 25 million expected to reach the market this year to 67 million eReaders by 2016.


A new report by analyst firm, Juniper Research, says that Amazon's foray into the tablet space further enhances the business case for eReaders, and that the price of the market-leading Kindle has fallen significantly (from $349 to $79) since it was launched, but that electronic ink technology will ensure that the device continues to carve out a niche for itself in the wireless device ecosystem.

According to report author, Daniel Ashdown, many thought Amazon's recent announcement of its first tablet device, might signal a shift away from dedicated eReaders in its device strategy. 'However, in tandem, it announced three new Kindle models, two of which include touchscreen technology, borrowed from tablets, and now seen as a 'must-have' in mobile devices,' Ashdown said.

'Amazon has done its homework: it knows there is not a one-size-fits-all device that makes everyone happy. While the iPad 2 - which it sells - is a premium tablet for Generation Y, Amazon has the wider market covered.

'Amazon's new range of Kindles (priced from $79 to $149) offer a range of options, and the Kindle Fire (priced at $199) offers a mass market alternative to the iPad and others. Barnes & Noble - another leading eReader vendor - is also covering its bases with the Nook Color, a touchscreen LCD eReader with an app store, Ashdown noted.

According to Juniper, looking further ahead, vendors are exploring hybrid displays which integrate both LCD and electronic ink technology, and the research firm says that while LCD is superior for high resolution video, electronic ink provides a more comfortable reading experience and utilises less battery.

 


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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham - retired and is a "volunteer" writer for iTWire. He is a veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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