Jun 7, 2011
Almost one year ago, Amazon announced that sales of books for the Kindle had for the first time outnumbered sales of hardcover books. Just last month, Amazon stated that the Kindle was outselling hardcover and paperback combined.
With the recent releases of dedicated e-readers and tablet computers, there has been a surge in electronic media for consumer consumption. Many companies offer magazines, newspapers, books, and other materials that were once only available in hardcopy in a digital format. This explosion in digital media has caused e-readers and tablets to become major consumer products.
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Feb 11, 2011
In the late 1970’s I read an article by a well-known strategic-planning guru (whose name I have now forgotten) that, among other good points, contained the observation that changes driven by technology often take longer than expected — sometimes MUCH longer — to develop, but once they start, they tend to accelerate rapidly. Another observation in the same article was that “technology giveth, and technology taketh away”. Both statements are apt right now for the paper industries in the advanced economies. After more than thirty years of availability of computing power at all levels (I attended the first “paperless office” demonstration in 1977), and 20 years of widespread Internet availability, it is only in the past decade, and more especially in the past five years, that all this technology has started really biting into demand for printing and writing papers. The fruition of these technology trends has made the current recession one in which, for the advanced-economy paper industries, the end of the recession will only staunch the bleeding, not heal the wounds. Read more »