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Will all color ereaders be the thing of the future? I look at the kindles that display black and white cover images, and think 'this reminds me of when mobile phones were monochrome only'. In other words, it wont last. What do you think?  ???
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Black and white all text books stuck around even after color magazines were published.  I think there will be a place for black and white devices for a long time because of the price point and the lack of need for color for the zillions of books out there.

However, they don't really reminde me of my monochromatic screen mobile phone; the eInk screen is too sophisticated.

Betsy
 

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You all have very valid points. I do think color will take over, simply because it always does! ;)
 

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Yeah. . . but in this case it could be argued it already has.  There is color on the many tablets available.  For someone who just wants to read. . . a basic b&w ereader is all they need.
 

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markknight said:
In other words, it wont last. What do you think? ???
Color is such a popular feature that it renders black and white an expensive low-volume niche item. It happened with photographic film and developing. It happened with computer monitors. It happened with television.

Go to a developing country and look for the simplest, cheapest cell phone you can buy. Color screen. Does color make the phone better? Not that I can see, but people like color.

As for books still being black and white, yes they are on the text pages. But the photo sections in most paper immersive reading non-fiction books -- at least ones I read -- are now in color.

Ann in Arlington said:
For someone who just wants to read. . . a basic b&w ereader is all they need.
This is true.

Of course, there are lots of consumer products where it gets to the point where you can't purchase an item with just the features you need. For my needs, every new car sold in the US is, I think, over-powered. And even the simplest cell phone has a slew of features I don't need, ranging from games to color.

But if I was at Amazon looking at sales figures, and saw how sales of immersive reading non-fiction is still mostly going to my brick and mortar competition (documented here), I would want to get as many people as possible over to a color platform. So they will, I predict, eventually stop making eInk readers.

Hopefully it will continue to be possible to buy repair parts, and load new books, on old eInk readers. But I'm not counting on it.
 

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Ann in Arlington said:
Yeah. . . but in this case it could be argued it already has. There is color on the many tablets available. For someone who just wants to read. . . a basic b&w ereader is all they need.
I agree. I have a couple of tablets and I've tried reading on them, but nothing beats the e-ink for reading. They're still selling well enough that I think they'll be around longer than most people think. I believe it's way too early to write them off.
 

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PhillyGuy said:
Color is such a popular feature that it renders black and white an expensive low-volume niche item. It happened with photographic film and developing. It happened with computer monitors. It happened with television.

Go to a developing country and look for the simplest, cheapest cell phone you can buy. Color screen. Does color make the phone better? Not that I can see, but people like color.

As for books still being black and white, yes they are on the text pages. But the photo sections in most paper immersive reading non-fiction books -- at least ones I read -- are now in color.
This is true.
By moving to color, photographic film, TVs and color monitors are able to show the real world as it is. It makes sense to leave B&W behind for those mediums.

But yeah, the cell phones in color? Even the non-smartphones? I don't see the need and yet it's there.

I think for people who only want one device, a color tablet makes sense. Non-fiction books and magazines benefit from color, because they typically have photographs. I have several and read those on my iPad. (And Fire, now.) But with the gazillions of fiction books out there without pictures, there will be a place for a dedicated B&W reader for some time to come. I think. Been wrong before. :)

Betsy
 

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Amekatay said:
Check this out! I think the color eink looked great.
Maybe, but the manufacturer is hand-picking images best suited for the technology.

It likely has the advertised 4,096 colors, but two colors that are missing will be, I predict, white and black.

I'm fine with reading dark grey on an off-white background. But the truth is that if I read a military history book with maps, on my eInk Pearl Kindle, they are too washed out to be easily read. I don't care much about that, but others do. eInk's imperfect contrast ratio probably explains why this board, and Amazon's eBook sales, have historically tilted towards fiction.
 

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PhillyGuy said:
Maybe, but the manufacturer is hand-picking images best suited for the technology.

It likely has the advertised 4,096 colors, but two colors that are missing will be, I predict, white and black.
You know, that's a good point. Even with the fairly high contrast of the PW, the 'black' is not quite 'black' and the 'white' is not quite 'white'. The contrast is even less with the light off. It is fine for straight-through text reading, but if you want really good quality images you have to be able to get a really white white and a really black black.

I'm thinking about our color printer. . . it has a dedicated black cartridge, as well as the three colors. If the black runs out, it 'makes' black with the other three, but it's never quite as dark. Always more like a very dark gray.

Even people who don't notice such things directly -- like my husband can't tell the difference between close shades -- would likely notice that the picture isn't as 'clear'.

And, if you think about it, 4,096 is a lot -- but the best image resolution now -- and people expect this -- usually uses 'millions' of colors. :-\
 

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PhillyGuy said:
Maybe, but the manufacturer is hand-picking images best suited for the technology.

It likely has the advertised 4,096 colors, but two colors that are missing will be, I predict, white and black.

I'm fine with reading dark grey on an off-white background. But the truth is that if I read a military history book with maps, on my eInk Pearl Kindle, they are too washed out to be easily read. I don't care much about that, but others do. eInk's imperfect contrast ratio probably explains why this board, and Amazon's eBook sales, have historically tilted towards fiction.
I agree with the hand picking of the photos. I think the technology would work great for displaying book cover art in color on eink screens, which I would love to see, others may care less about the cover art. Books with graphs, maps and heavy art work would probably still be best suited for tablets and PC's.

Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk 2
 

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I don't think it will be too long until eReaders and tablets merge together completely - it's basically already happening now with the KF. So yes colour is inevitable!
 

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Cyanide5000 said:
I don't think it will be too long until eReaders and tablets merge together completely - it's basically already happening now with the KF. So yes colour is inevitable!
EXCEPT. . . a lot of people find the eInk style of screen much more comfortable for long reading. So I don't think dedicated readers will go away until they can make tablet screens nearly as comfortable. And I don't think the eInk style is ever going to be as good for color -- at least from what I know about how they work which is, admittedly, very little.
 

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Yeah, for me a e-reader must be e-ink. Or whatever the equivalent would be if there is some other technology like that.
Its not just the lack of backlight, its the way its made. The words are on the top. Not sure how to describe it. But I remember when I got my first Kindle, K1. I just kept staring at the screen and touching it. It was like I could almost feel the letters. They seemed to be right on the surface. It makes it so easy to read and my eyes just glide over the screen with no strain. It just felt like reading a book, but way way better.

For me it is never possible to get that with any kind of backlit screen. LCD, LED, doesn't matter. I will never be able to read on them for fiction.
I love my Fire HD, but I use it for everything but reading fiction. I can read a few pages on it, but then my eyes start going in circles. I have to concentrate so much reading on backlit. While on e-ink, my eyes literally relax. That is why I can read literally for hours in one block and not have issues.

When it comes to reading for me, I cannot compromise. Its just not possible. And for fiction, black and white is just fine.

So I think e-ink readers will stick around just like calculators are still around, toasters are still around. coffeemakers are still around.
 

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I was under the impression that e-ink readers were an innovative way to read books, not an entry level device to grow and improve over time, turning it into something else. I can see making some improvements such as the PW with it's built in light and maybe there will be other ideas addressed in the future to make a better reading experience. But as long as there are people who love, love, love to read, there will always be a need for a dedicated e-reader. Color isn't part of reading a good book. So I will be very surprised if my e-ink reader goes the way of black and white TV!
 

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I think color will take over eventually. The number of colors has to come up - 4096 colors was nice in the 80's - and the price has to come down. If it reaches the point were the price difference is insignificant between color and monochrome, the monochrome displays will vanish. I hope that the displays will be able to do well in monochrome for text.
 

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I'd love to see a good color eInk screen come down the pipes.  I read a lot of comics, and would really like to see a quality color eInk screen to read comics on.  It'd give me the impression that I'm actually reading a comic book.  It just doesn't look the same on an LCD screen. 

After reading a couple black-n-white issues of The Walking Dead on my Kindle...I was sold on the idea.
 

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For a while there, PixelQi and Mirasol were picking up steam in the color screen realm. PixelQi had a screen for netbooks that would switch between eInk and backlit color, but it really hasn't jumped out into the mainstream yet. Two years ago, the Mirasol display was being shown off at CES, and had reported a major company had signed on with them for their reflective-color screens. The last I heard, the Mirasol display was showing up somewhere like China or Japan, but not moving into other countries.

I always liked the idea of the PixelQi display. Flip a switch and it looks like eInk for daytime reading. Flip the switch again and the backlight turns on and the screen is in color. It's interesting that neither has caught on.
 
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