The Future of Physical Books – Is There One?

We are all aware of how fast technology is progressing – we are no strangers to virtual reality or even AI. These things are all making our lives easier, more convenient, and overall give us some abilities that we didn’t have before. The simple fact that we can chat with a person on the other side of the globe is crazy and we shouldn’t take that for granted. But with all of these new things coming into our lives and replacing less useful versions, you have to wonder about what we are losing in the process. We now have so many different ways of consuming books that some people fear that physical books will soon be forgotten and completely disappear. Could this really happen?

Other ways of consuming books

We have all heard about e-books and e-readers such as Kindle. These are very useful because it is a whole little library in one device that makes it so easy for you to carry all of your favorite books with you. One of these devices is lighter than a physical book (especially a hardback book) so it is more convenient for when you are traveling or commuting, or just carrying a lot of things with you. But that isn’t the only substitute for physical books. In the past couple of years, audiobooks have become so popular that some people choose only to listen to books and not read them. Audiobooks, just like e-books, are great when you are on the go, commuting, getting your groceries, or doing some random tasks around the house. You don’t have to sit down with a book and focus on it – you can instead listen to it while you also do something else.

Will this destroy physical books?

We can clearly see the benefits of both ebooks and audiobooks, but the truth is that physical books aren’t going anywhere. There are still a lot of people who love to read from physical books, even if they sometimes use e-books and audiobooks for convenience. There is something about physical books, perhaps the feel of the pages or the smell of a freshly opened book that you can never replicate with technology. That’s why I believe that physical books are not in danger.

Should we support non-physical books?

Of course! Instead of pinning these mediums against each other, why don’t we just accept that different people like consuming books in different ways and that they all have their good and bad sides. Instead of trying to get rid of audiobooks because you want physical books to thrive, try seeing the benefits of audiobooks and how some people (for example, people with poor eyesight, or people who cannot read) might really need them. We should appreciate all book forms, and simply choose which one serves us best.