For months now I've been on the fence regarding the Amazon Kindle. The ease of downloading a book from Amazon in seconds, as well as the easy to read screen, have almost pushed me into the purchase camp. But I've held off because the design of the Kindle has all the grace and originality of a Glenn Frey guitar solo.
So I decided to wait for Kindle Version 2.0. Well, it's here -- and it's the iPhone 2.0.
Since the release of the new iPhone software I've been downloading lots of apps for the new phone. These new apps, more than the 3G, are what I believe is driving the huge sales of the new phone.
One of the new iApps is an ebook reader called Stanza. It will allow you to open and read pretty much any format of ebook, and it will sync with the ebooks already on your Mac (not Windows though; haven't you switched yet?). Stanza provides a surprisingly fluid and ergonomically pleasing reading experience on my iPhone. I've quickly gotten used to sitting in an airport reading a book on my iPhone. I know, I'm a geek.
What makes this interesting is the hint of a "platform transition" given during Apple's earnings conference today. I believe this next platform is going to be a new tablet computer, probably 3-4 times the size of the current iPhone. Remember the Newton? It's coming back.
Steve Jobs has criticized the Kindle, saying no one wants to read ebooks. He's right, in that the killer "platform" has yet arrived on which to do so. But it's coming in the form of Apple's tablet, which will have just about the perfect form factor for reading books. Throw in a glorious screen, and the ability to download books from Apple, and you can throw out your Kindle.