Shannon Stacey

Resistance just might be futile

I’ll admit it—I’m an iPod Touch cheerleader. When Apple served up the Kool-Aid, I gulped it down and said, “Can I have some more, please?”

I absolutely love reading ebooks on the iTouch. Backlit, crisp screen, fits perfectly in my hand so I can read and swipe to the turn the pages one-handed. There was absolutely nothing I’d complain about (other than Harlequin not caring to give millions and millions of iPod Touch users a format, but that’s not Apple’s fault).

Until Saturday.

Usually I don’t read while taking Mini out. She’s a very sneaky dog who will pretend to go potty so she can get a treat, then five minutes later go out and go potty. Another treat. I have to watch her pretty closely to avoid falling for her bathroom shenanigans. But I was in the middle of reading a great scene, so I hooked her leash on and opened the door (which I could without looking up from my book because, hey, one-handed reading).

The second I stepped out the door I could no longer see the screen. Not good.

I don’t go to the beach, but we do go up to camp every other weekend from late April to mid-November, and that’s my leisure time. That’s when I get to sit on the deck and read for two days (when I’m not playing in the mud), and since I’ve been digital-only in 2009, that’s a serious problem. My deck has an awning, but it’s…more of a filter, I guess. I have a lot of trouble seeing my laptop screen on the deck, so I don’t see how it would be different for the iTouch.

Enter the e-ink device. The Sony Reader, specifically. Do. Not. Want. I don’t want another device. I don’t want another format. I don’t want another USB cord I have to tape a sticky note label around because I have 239 USB cords. I don’t want another power adapter.

I repeat: Do. Not. Want.

But you can read them in the sun. Bright sunlight, even.

But $300? Three. Hundred. Dollars. (I’m looking at the 505.) One nice thing about it—it won’t consign the iTouch to the Techno-Scrap Heap, like the iTouch did to the Palm TX. (My Alphasmart and a shiny new Asus eee900a also reside there.) My entire life is now managed by iTouch apps, so nothing will replace it.

I’d probably have more options: Access to Kindle-deliciousness through the iTouch. For the Sony, Harlequin ebooks, which I can’t read right now thanks to them not caring about the millions and millions of iPod Touch owners. (I’m not bitter. Do I sound bitter?) And I’d be able to read at camp.

But another device? A three-hundred-dollar one?


10 comments to “Resistance just might be futile”

  1. Jody Wallace
      · March 30th, 2009 at 10:03 am · Link

    What formats can you read on your iTouch? My beloved PDA is dying and I am considering another handheld instead of the Kindle or Sony as well. I LOVE the backlight and one-handed reading (not to be confused with…well, you know).

  2. Ally @ The Cata Network
      · March 30th, 2009 at 10:11 am · Link

    This sounds like the age old problem with ebooks. Multiple formats. Publishers not supporting some formats. Not being able to take an edevice everywhere you can take a print book. But ebooks do have some serious upsides that keep us interested in them. Better storage space. 50 books in your purse. Yeah, that sounds pretty heavenly…so does taking your ebook device out on the deck… :gaah:

  3. Shannon
      · March 30th, 2009 at 10:13 am · Link

    I buy most of mine in eReader from Fictionwise, and now the Kindle books from Amazon through that app.

    The Stanza app description says it reads ePub, eReader, PDF, Mobipocket or MS Reader, but I think they mean non-DRM’d. I’m not sure. Most of what I buy has DRM, unfortunately, so FW’s eReader works. Then I use the eReader app to grab it from my FW bookshelf and start reading.

    I’m a huge category fan, though, and not being able to read HQN’s ebooks KILLS me. (Well, I can, but I have to wait until they’re at FW, so I lose out on HQN promotions and the early releases.)

  4. Shannon
      · March 30th, 2009 at 10:15 am · Link

    The only place I can’t take an ebook I’d take a print book is the bathtub. Oh, and now on my deck, of course.


    But I love having all my books with me. And since the office remodel, I haven’t put bookshelfs back in. Those hundreds of books are still in boxes. I don’t even want to see them. They seem like clutter now, and when I do unbox them, only a few keeper authors will survive.

  5. Ally @ The Cata Network
      · March 30th, 2009 at 10:34 am · Link

    Yeah, no ebooks in the bathtub will NOT be a good thing. That’s where I do half my reading. :)

  6. azteclady
      · March 30th, 2009 at 1:21 pm · Link

    I feel your pain–I’m seriously saving the pennies for a Sony myself, even though I have the baby ‘puter. But the eink!!! I lust after it…

    (not the kindle, though, never the kindle, because I have no self control and I can just see the book addiction bringing me ruin. thanks no thanks)

  7. Jean
      · March 30th, 2009 at 1:33 pm · Link

    The idea of feeding kids is over-rated. Isn’t it about time they learned to forage for themselves? A month or so, and you could afford that sexy 505. No problem.

  8. Angela James
      · March 30th, 2009 at 1:35 pm · Link

    Where’s all the creative thinking in this thread? I take my Sony in the bathtub. Why do you think God invented gallon-size plastic bags? Not for storage! For Sony protection.

    Jody: 700 has built-in lights. And I do one-handed reading on all of the ebook readers, so the iTouch/iPhone doesn’t have an advantage there.

  9. Patti
      · March 30th, 2009 at 4:03 pm · Link

    I read all my books on paper still…I fell so old fashioned and embarrassed and …ashamed. I’m just happy I can use a digital camera.

  10. Shannon
      · March 31st, 2009 at 11:25 am · Link

    One other thing that might sway me…battery power. While it’s not too bad with Stanza, I’ve noticed reading with the Kindle for iPhone app eats battery power like I eat Doritos. NOM NOM NOM. I’m charging my iTouch twice a day. Doing that at camp doesn’t appeal to me, plus I’m not even reading a lot right now.

    But Patti, just think! Last time you went to Denver, you could have taken 50 books with you—in your coat pocket! :cheesy:

    Ha! I scrolled up and just noticed I used the word “bookshelfs” in my previous comment. That amuses me, even if it’s really embarrassing.

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