I was filling out a survey about e-books the other day, and it asked what I used to read on my iPad - the Kindle app or the Nook app?
I use on a regular basis:
- the Kindle app. Good for reading, well, things from Amazon. I have to admit, Amazon is easy. I go on their website, tell it to send the book to Russell (the iPad), and boom done. Most of what I pull down from Amazon are free books, though, of which there is no lack. Books are easy to search, color options are easy to change. My queendom for the ability to organize books, and not just sort by author, title, and recent. Archiving and deleting are completely non-obvious (press and hold to delete, swipe to get an archive button).
- the Nook app. I am more likely to buy from B&N than Amazon, because I want other people to continue to sell books besides Amazon. I like the Nook app better than the Kindle app for no real reason that I could put my finger on at the moment. Also does not offer organizational options. Does anyone who actually reads write these apps?
- Stanza. This is where everything that doesn't have DRM to deal with goes. I like it best of all. It has collections! But they're awkward to manage. (Tagging, people, it's 2011).
- the Overdrive app. This is what I have to use to read e-books from my library. I am so, so grateful that I can do this (for free!), but I've said some nasty things about the Overdrive app. You can't turn in a book from the iPad. If it's an Adobe epub, I can download it to my computer and turn it in from there; otherwise, you've got to wait for the lending period to expire. Overdrive can't directly download the books - it loads Safari, which you use to log into your account, which then you can download the book with, which loads it into Overdrive... blah blah blah so a first world problem, but it's still badly designed. Still. I can read library books on my portable mini-computer, and I love living in the future.
I have installed but have not used yet:
- Bluefire Reader, which I installed because a book I purchased has a whacksauce Adobe DRM and I didn't realize that I wasn't going to be able to somehow authenticate it in Stanza. Avoiding that from now on if I can, let me tell you. No idea if I like it or not. Still need to read the book. :)
- the Kobo app. I want to like this - Borders likes to give out coupon codes. But if I can't figure out how to turn off the blasted social networking "features", this is a no go (I've googled, a lot; all I find are articles about how great these features are. Ngggh.) I do not want to tell Facebook that I started a new book. I do not want it to ask me if I want to tell Facebook that I started a new book. (When did Facebook get so wrapped up in everything? Freaking Weight Watchers is offering to link my Facebook account with my WW account. Are they HIGH?) I turned off notifications while reading, and turned off icons for characters and locations, but I want to make it all go away. I do not need a "Primetime Award" because I was reading between 8pm and 10pm.
Whee. Okay, that was more effusive than I intended.
I do not use:
- iBooks. I do not need the pages of my virtual book to actually turn. This is a deal breaker in any app.
In sum: yay books.
I'm reading a lot more now that I'm reading e-books. I still like paper books, sometimes, but e-books are upping my reading volume; I'm still thinking about why. What I end up with in paper and what I end up with in e depends on what form factor the library has, how badly I want to read a book, how much I want to support the author, whether I'm likely to get it cheaper at the used bookstore (I am a reader on a budget), whether I'm going to want to loan the book out, and whether the books I want to read are digitized (most of Dorothy Gilman isn't. Charlotte Macleod isn't. Etc.) Some books I own in paper, but I'm getting ready to sell to the used bookstore and replace in e-book, because they're doorstoppers (S. M. Stirling, I'm looking at you). I don't audiobook (my audio attention span is about as long as an episode of This American Life). If you offer the first book in a series free, I'm more likely to buy the rest. Etc.
So. Do you read e-books? What's your preferred app/hardware? What are you reading now?
Meantime, I think I need to go to bed. And, well, read. And sleeeeeeeeeeeeep. :)