Ballmer: Who Needs E-Readers When You've got a PC?



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As a Kindle owner, There are many advantages to having a dedicated reading device.  Even one that costs $260.

1) The screen is so much better than trying to read on your PC/Laptop/Netbook.  So Ballmer is clueless.

2) You can carry it and read almost anywhere you can read a book.  Beach, subway, train, plane, poolside, Dr office, etc.  Try that with your netbook.

3) You do not need Amazon to subsidize your purchase.  By being a good shopper, you can save tons of money on your own.  I have "purchase" some 67ebooks since Christmas.  My average cost per ebook is just $1.46.  I have read 32 of them.  I have saved over $450.  That does not include shipping and taxes.  So my savings is actually higher.  Even if you do not shop, NY Times best sellers will save you $5 each time.

4) The battery life is amazing.  Two weeks on a single charge with the wireless turned off.  Even with the wireless turned on, a charge will last a few days or more.


Now if you don't read books, then there is no reason to own a Kindle or other such device.  But those of us who read, there is no comparison.  Being able to finish one book and immediately start another is great.  Or someone recommeding a book and being able to sample it in less than a minute is just unbelievable before the Kindle came along.

This is more than a passing fad.  The number of devices coming into the market is great to see.  That means Amazon has to keep innovating.  The problem many competitors have is that Amazon has a huge selection of ebooks and keeps adding to its lead.  The device is only part of the pucture.

<And no.  I do not work for Amazon.  I am just a very happy customer>



Short term spikes in sales trends (a couple years is short term) is not any kind of an indicator of the "wave of the future." Just look at PDAs. Not ten years since they were a necessity for any self-respecting business man and they have already gone the way of the dodo. Granted they have been replaced by smartphones, but they were dieing off before those became common.

 My personal thoughts on the usefulness of e-readers is that I am unable to convince myself it is a good idea to spend $225 on a device which serves one function (e-reader) which is better served by a device which costs $300 and serves a myriad of functions (netbook).



I understand not wanting some frail, condecending nerd to be the face of Microsoft - but Ballmer makes even the computer illiterate look smart enough to talk Windows.

Oh wait...................BRILLIANT!


Peanut Fox

While I can't imagine paying
more than $50 for one, many others have and will take the plunge.  I'd
like to see Amazon offer their readers at subsidized pricing.  You buy
the reader for say $50 and pay a monthly fee
for (X) number of years (2 maybe) and you have unlimited access to all e-books in the store while you are paying the fee.  I'd be like a Zune Pass for books!!!


HC Robin Yahood

I LOVE the MS Reader program that is still available. It is especially useful on my HTC Phone! But apparently they haven't even tried to update it since Windows XP.

 Maybe its because the lit file format never took off like they wanted but I'm sure it wouldn't be to big a task for MS to rewrite the code. Yet I can still get a few new books in lit format.

MS not wanting to make an e-reader is FINE by me, but how about some software for all those "most popular devices" in the world?




There's a big difference between being passionate and being a complete loon. How can anybody take this guy seriously?




Sure I read articles and such on my PC but I would NEVER read a whole book on it. E-ink is WAAAY easier on the eyes than your average computer screen because it isn't constantly refreshing itself.  



I agree with your comment word for word, but if I'd had written it, I would have added some stuff about Ballmer being crazy. 




 e-ink book readers are a great device for certain kinds of book. Not ready for prime time for textbooks or magazines yet but for a novel they are great.

  For all you nay sayers out there, look at all the e-book readers coming out. Must be two dozen of them in the next year. Why on earth would companies put good money into R&D into a crowded market unless the potential is huge?

Luddites beware, like vinyl, like VCR, paper books will be a dated commodity in 20 years. 

 Until LCD displays are hand held and do not flicker of overwealm my eyes, the PC will not capture the E-book market.




Wow, how does anyone ever take Ballmer seriously.  Gates made sense, but this guy just seems like he's always flying off the handle or saying something idiotic.  If Ballmer doesn't ruin Microsoft forever, I'm gonna be shocked. (yes, I'm aware he was Bill's right hand man, but I don't feel he's doing a good job now at all.)
### I'm an idiot, and I approve this message ###



Maybe it's just because I haven't tried one yet but why spend $299 or more for an electronic book reader when I can just buy the book for $10? The only benefit I can imagine is the back light but they also sell little book lights for $4.99. Does the e-reader read the book for me or something?



When's he going to say "Who needs a game console when you've got a PC???"



 well who does really? the get ported to pc eventually

Coming soon to --Tokusatsu Heroes--
Five teenagers, one alien ghost, a robot, and the fate of the world.

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