To all you Baby Boomers who haven’t discovered ebooks yet, boy are you in for a treat! I’ve been using a tablet to read Kindle ebooks for years, Now when I occasionally read a paperback novel, it feels restrictive and outdated.
What’s so great about ebooks? Oh, let me count the ways:
- Any laptop, desktop, tablet or mobile phone can be turned into an ebook reader (“eReader”) by simply downloading and activating a free application like Amazon’s Kindle.
- Electronic screens are readable in bed at night without turning on a lamp and disturbing your mate’s sleep.
- Don’t have anything to read? It takes just minutes to find an ebook online, conclude a transaction (if any) and then download it. Believe me, this is wonderful when you wake up in the middle of the night and have to read yourself back to sleep.
- Public libraries now carry volumes of ebooks which can be “checked out” for FREE! No more having to drive to a library and then spend time browsing the aisles hoping someone else hasn’t already checked out that book you really want to read!
- Major vendors, like Amazon and Barnes & Noble, have inexpensive plans that make access to ebooks very affordable.
- eBook formats and ereader devices offer many amenities not found with paper books. For example, font size adjustment, easy page swiping, bookmarks, content highlighting, optional audible narration, and immediate access to a dictionary.
- Taking a trip? Just download one or more ebooks before leaving and you’ll have immediate access to reading material without having to search for a wifi connection.
- You don’t have to deal with “What do I do with this book after I’ve read it?” No more accumulation of hard-copy books around the house or in the garage. No more trips to the library to donate them. Nope, purchased ebooks can be simply deleted to free up device storage or even loaned to a friend.
What Kind of eBooks are Available?
Everything from romance novels to textbooks! If it is in paperback or hardback, there is usually an ebook version of it. And typically sold at half the price (or less)!
eNewspapers and eMagazines Too!
I love reading a newspaper, catching up on local community and world news in a leisurely fashion. It’s a morning ritual with my coffee and toast. Well the coffee and toast are still there, but now I get my morning paper delivered to my tablet. The digital version is less expensive, more environmentally friendly and so much easier to read and navigate. I could never go back to a paper version on the morning newspaper!
Ditto for subscriptions to magazines.Why wait for the mailman to come through? Have your magazines automatically delivered to your ereader as soon as the latest edition is published.
Should Boomers Buy a special “eReader?”
A variety of devices beyond ordinary tablets and mobile phones have been developed especially for ebooks – various flavors of Amazon Kindles, the “Nook” from Barnes & Noble, and other devices from independent companies like Koba. They offer several advantages, such as compact sizes (6″-7″), more lighting options, more internal memory, longer battery life and less eye strain. There are even waterproof versions for fearless reading in the bathtub. And some have 3G as well as wifi connectivity.
Apple offers ereader software for the iPad to read their “iBooks.” Not wanting to miss a market, Amazon also offers a free version of their Kindle software for the iPad.
Typically, dedicated ereaders start around $50 and run as high as $300. If having a device devoted to edocuments appeals to you, these fast reads provide great advice:
Maybe someday I’ll make an investment in an ereader. Right now, my 10″ tablet serves me just fine. Most tablets have the Google Android operating system which supports a variety of free ereader software for ultimate flexibility.
The Bottom line for Baby Boomers
Once Boomers discover ebooks, they rarely go back! eBooks, enewspapers and emagazines offer superior reading experiences and enhanced convenience. Plus they cost less and even save forests! Moreover, they provide easy access to literature – Boomers can download digital documents at home from a public library or an online vendor while sitting in their favorite easy chair. In short, ebooks, enewspapers and emagazines open a whole new world of enjoyable reading during retirement without crunching a Boomer’s pocketbook.