Thursday, January 5, 2012

Downloads Top Album Sales For the First Time

Something we all know has arrived. The download is now preeminent in the music world and those CD players we have are now in the junk heap of history. Sure Sure. People will still buy a physical medium to claim ownership, but that accessibility will trump ownership eventually and the digital medium is proving it more every day. A million kindles sold every week by Amazon. A million. If the writing gets any bigger on the wall there will be no more wall.

Not that books are songs. They are not. Readers are a persnickety group and a lot of people will prefer the book, but when my eighty nine year old father in-law and my eighty year old mother in-law are sitting in their La-Z boys hunched over their Kindle screens then something is definitely up. The speed of this transition is taking away our collective breath and is already leaving authors and publishers scrambling to keep up. The proof is in the download.

The Kindle is not the IPOD. Not yet anyway. You still want a break from the Kindle with a book. I know I do and have read the last three novels in the old paper format. Music has no such physical drawbacks. In fact having all your music in your pocket is fantastic compared to carrying around a bulky CD player or worse a boom box. But, portability is a big factor in the Kindle reader also. You don't lug books, but the tech revolution of the IPOD just doesn't seem as much of a Watershed as the Kindle. It is still a better tactile experience to read a book if not visually as well.

But the Kindle is still evolving. Paper screens may not be far off along with brighter screens that are easier on the eye. Who knows, maybe they will even get that pulpy old book smell puffing out as you read.
Rocket Man...a hilarious well written novel about one mans search for the new American Dream James Frey

Books by William Hazelgrove