Ebooks are electronic counterparts of a printed books that may be viewed on desktops, smart phones, laptops or e-book readers. Electronic books are easy to carry while traveling, and they make referencing easier than the traditional books. Moreover, e-book readers may permit the user to annotate book pages.
The digital books, or the ebooks, come with a variety of formats. In 2007, Amazon introduced its kindle e-book reader and e-book inventory. In 2010, Apple introduced the ipad tablet, which features e-books downloadable through a Wi-Fi connection. Other common formats are Kobo e-Reader, Kobo Vox, Nook Simple Touch and Sony Reader, all of which have their pros and cons.
The electronic books can be offered indefinitely; they do not go out of stock as ordinary books do. E-book collections contain thousands of books thus eliminate over dependence on space to stock the books. Numerous current ebooks have features for reading text a loud to help the blind, the partially blind, and the elderly to find the information contained in the books. In addition, they display motion and have settings that are capable of enlarging fonts. E-books contents are also available into a variety of languages.
The problem with ebooks is their numerous formats, such as Microsoft Reader, E-Reader, EPUB, Kindle, and Ipad, all of which are competitive for prime time. While some of them support direct dictionary look up, others do not, making it difficult to choose the best out of them. Initial investment cost in ebooks is also high since the cost of an e-book reader exceeds that of a single book. Further, due to lack of the relevant information, its market is not fully developed yet. E-book formats also evolve through time leading to inconvenience as they get outdated. Most of these formats also do not work with certain e-book devices. However, the e-book technology is the best option for self-publishers due to its lower publishing costs, convenient storage space, and ability to serve the blind and elderly.