On one of my other author loops, we've been deep in a discussion about what would be the perfect ebook reading device. Obviously, opinions are as varied as the people involved in the discussion. <g>
I feel like I've got that covered. I've been a proponent of e-reading for a long time. When the hubby and I moved from New Orleans to Houston--as empty nesters--we had to downsize everything...and that included my extensive book collection. But I'd been adding to my ebook collection before that.
I like to read on two devices. I have my phone, a Palm Treo, that is always with me, so if I have unexpected waiting time, I always have something to read with me. (The Treo also plays music and movies, is loaded with a couple of games AND lets me create and edit documents, but that's another story!). I love it and have no trouble reading from the smallish screen because I had Lasik eye surgery a few years back. I got something called mono-vision (since I'm past a certain age), which means I have one eye for distance seeing and one eye for close up reading. Probably won't last forever, but for now, I can read small text with no trouble. Though my Mobipocket reader does allow me to increase the text size.
I also have an ebookwise reader, which I also love. It's bigger, more like a standard paperback book size. Currently it is loaded with about fifty books (about half its total capacity). I grab it when I know I'm going to be waiting for a while. Text can also be sized and the screen can be rotated for comfort. I also like that I can load my own stuff onto it and make notes on the screen. It has a search function, so I can easily find my notes later.
I'm a really fast reader, so I like having lots of choices. I also like the price of MOST ebooks. Some major publishers still don't get it, but I've found some great books out there from independent publishers. Classic books that are in the public domain can also be downloaded from Project Gutenberg for free.
I'm not totally against paper books. I have a collection of books that are dear to me and will stay with me until I die (and my kids sell them on ebay). But for me, a book is a story, first and foremost. For me, electronic is just a convenient format. I know some people really like audio books. For some reason, I have trouble concentrating on a book being read to me, so it doesn't work for me that well.
Another thing I love about the ebook market, I can try new authors at a price more compatible with my pocketbook. I've found some fun books out there in the independent publishing market. I know a lot of mystery authors are going to indie publishers as the NY market gets tighter and tighter.
When I start up my ebookwise, I think about my grandmother, who would have loved one. She was an avid reader and we used to share books, but as she got older, not only did her eyes give way. Her hearing gave her trouble and her hands got so they couldn't hold up even a small paperback any more. She would have loved having an ebookwise. She would have loved still being able to read.
So, what would it take to convert you to e-reading? Do you never see it happening? Would your perfect e-reader have to smell like a book? <g>