Friday, June 12, 2009

iPhone is a Kindle killer?

Ann Kirschner, university dean of William E. Macaulay Honors College at the City University of New York and the author of Sala's Gift: My Mother's Holocaust Story (Free Press, 2006), recently reread Little Dorritt for her bookclub. She writes an extremely interesting article about the experience.

I went automatically to my old Penguin paperback, standing ready on the shelf. Never mind its familiar and friendly orange spine — I hesitated. Maybe it would make sense to read the book on the Kindle that my husband bought me last year. Then again, for my daily Manhattan life, I love audiobooks, the best choice for crowded public transportation and a wonderful companion for walking. And now that I use an iPhone, I have been surprised by the ease of reading its crisp, bright screen.

I decided to read Little Dorrit four ways: paperback, audiobook, Kindle, and iPhone.

It was often maddening to keep finding and losing my place as I switched from format to format. But as an experiment, it taught me a great deal about my reading habits, and about how a text reveals itself differently as the reading context changes. Along the way, I also began to make some predictions about winners and losers in the evolution of books.
(via, well, damn, I forget--if if was you, let me know and I'll link)

Her conclusion? That the iPhone is a Kindle killer.

I don't own an iPhone, so I can't really comment. (But I love my Kindle.) So what do you think?

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