Why Ebook Is Not Disruptive (Yet)

One of my favorite strategy blog Stratechery recently has a great piece on ebooks. Apparently in 2015, the sales of physical books in the United States is still going strong while ebook fall down 10 percent. The market share of ebooks also did not grow very much, still steady at 20% for several years. The trend is even more disconcerting  due to the massive sales decline on ebook reader. Having single purpose device such as Kindle are apparently too cumbersome for general population. It is still too early to pull the verdict, but things are not going well for the state of electronic books.

Source: death to stock photos
Source: death to stock photos

This is very interesting because usually the emergence of the electronic media will disrupt the old establishment of physical ones. Case in point, the introduction of itunes and other digital music platform had brought CD sales to its knees. Disruptive Innovation as famously interpreted by Clayton Christensen. So why does this not happen with ebook ?. In the stratechery piece, there are three factors which held the adoption of ebooks: Price, Experience and Modularization.

Reflecting it to my experience as an avid book reader and the market condition in Indonesia, In this post, I will relate some of this drawback factors discussed in stratechery post to my personal experience. I will discuss some of the reasons which makes ebook worth to try and why physical books will still going to be around for the foreseeable future. Continue reading “Why Ebook Is Not Disruptive (Yet)”