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The Future of Books

I love to predict the future when it comes to technology.  I'm not always right, but I love the conversations and dreaming of what's possible.  With the speed of technology we no longer have to wait decades for these new technologies by often only a couple of years or maybe months.  Over the next few days I will look at several areas affected by technology and share my predictions and would love to hear yours.  Know that these are only my opinions and predictions and not fact. Let's start with books.  Since I just released my first book, I've been studying this quite a bit recently.  So what's my prediction?  Here you go: I think they're going digital.  Okay, I'm joking as this HUGE shift has already taken place and will continue to grow and expand.  Paper books will never go away, but will continue to diminish at a fast rate as more and more readers adjust to reading books digitally.  It's simply cheaper and faster making it more appealing to a greater mass.

The shift to digital continues to open up exciting opportunities to new authors in writing a book.  You no longer have to use a publisher to release a book or spend great amounts of money to print it.  You simply upload it to Amazon and the book is available to millions.  This shift is dramatically changing the publishing industry as your online platform to reach an audience as a publisher becomes far more important than your equipment to print in mass quality.

The next major shift that comes from books going digital is the opportunity for them to become social.  I love BookShout and the experience they have created allowing users to add friends and as they read books they can see the notes and highlights from their friends.  It's a digital book club and adds community to the reading experience.  I expect Amazon and others to catch on to this soon and create a similar experience on the Kindle and other reading applications.

What do you think?  Do you agree or disagree?  What do you see ahead for the future of books?