The Kindle DX was announced just over a year after my post about paper newspapers being a generational thing. Although I have this feeling that the Kindle DX is going to seem very clunky and antiquated in the near future, this model, more so than its predecessors, heralds the end of paper newspapers as the dominant format for newspapers. That may seem like quite a bold thing to say and I am sure many of the responses to this sort of statement include talk about Sunday morning papers and the fact that no device could quite match the feel and usability of a newspaper. The simple fact is that newspapers are struggling and the costs of producing and distributing paper newspapers is high, as is the environmental cost.
Consider the Kindle DX’s suitability for newspapers, books, magazines, textbooks and more. The Kindle DX already presents a range of options and benefits for publishers and consumers alike. Mashable has the following to say in its post:
Most interesting to us, however, is what the company is doing with a number of universities and newspaper companies to make its device more widely available. Amazon has signed on The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Boston Globe to offer the Kindle DX at a reduced price in exchange for long-term subscription commitments, while 5 universities are launching pilot programs where the Kindle will be offered to students as a replacement for textbooks.
Specifically, the newspapers are using the Kindle to expand their distribution to areas where they don’t currently offer home delivery of the dead tree paper. According to Arthur Sulzberger, Jr., Chairman of The New York Times Company, “By offering a subscription through the Kindle DX to readers who live outside of our delivery areas, we will extend our reach to our loyal readers who will be able to more readily enjoy their favorite newspapers.”
You can’t help but think about the possibilities the Kindle and future devices like it offer. Just take a look at this demo:
One of my favourite features is built-in PDF support. I have quite a few PDF ebooks on my MacBook but my MacBook is hardly the ideal device to read ebooks anywhere but at my desk or at a table. A device like the newspaper in the Microsoft concept video below (28 seconds in but it is worth watching the whole video) would be a real improvement on the Kindle and satisfy hold-outs for paper newspapers but one thing that is clear is that the publishing industry must change. Paper publications are wasteful and inefficient.
Here is that montage video: