Scenario 1 - Extinction of Traditional Books
In 2007, Google's book scanning project brings more publicity for the e-book industry. More and more people become aware of the new possibilities of e-books. As people are already able to read newspapers online, download music and movies from the Internet, they start to realize the possibility that they could also read and download e-books anywhere at any time.
Following the example of Sony, e-book reader manufacturers start utilizing the new possibilities of eInk–technology, and start to focus on developing the readability of e-book readers.
The first cellphones with rollable display for reading newspapers and books, launched by Telecom Italia and Polymer Vision gets lot of publicity worldwide. By the end of 2007, due to the instable situation in the Middle-East, the oil price is rising to almost 100 dollars per barrel and energy is more expensive than the past decades.
In 2008 interest towards new e-book readers starts to increase and Sony and its competitors invest big amounts for large marketing campaigns. The new reader is praised for its reading features and Sony is constantly developing its e-book store, based on the same idea that iTunes has become a success. Apple is developing their e-book offering to respond the growing competition.
The growing concern of global warming and the paper industry speeding up the climate change force governments to make new strict environmental laws. Also, book readers start to see the environmental benefits of e-books over printed versions. Environmental activists get lots of publicity when campaigning for e-publishers and against the paper industry.
In beginning of the 2008, United States and allies attack Iran and Syria. This was motivated by the information on terrorist collaboration of the governments. The Russian government disagrees with the methods used for war and cuts off the gas to Europe as a response.
By the end of the 2009, when the e-book reader manufacturers have seen promising sales figures, many new e-book readers have come to the markets, the prices of the readers start to decrease. Traditional book publishers start to bring more e-books to the market and start to develop more interactive content to the e-books, including pictures, videos and sound.
E-book publishers are trying to promote their own e-book formats to be a break-through in the markets, but they are starting to realize that one common standard has to be created before e-books can really take-off.
As a result of the co-operation of the e-books publishers and e-book reader manufacturers one unified standard for e-book format is finally developed. When one standard format has been agreed, the publishers and e-book reader manufactures can focus more on the quality and features of their products and the prices start to decrease.
In Christmas 2009, “the hit present” of the Christmas is an e-book reader and the sale rates are high especially in Europe, US and Japan.
In 2010, the most active e-book buyers are educational institutions, libraries and the readers in the age of 16-45.
Authors are becoming more concerned about their intellectual rights, and the publishers and many large IT companies are finally forced to start developing DRM that really secures copyrights.
In 2012, the sale of the e-books reach the sales numbers of printed books in Europe, US and Japan. With governmental support, libraries all over the world have increased the offering of the e-books. The rent percentages of e-books and printed books are 50-50.
The prices of the e-book readers have decreased remarkably in the last 5 years and prices vary from €100-250, which is affordable for the majority of the people in developed countries.
In 2012, European Union starts to promote the e-book as main facility for learning. The goal is to cut costs in education, e-books are environmentally friendly, the distribution is extremely convenient and updates for older books are totally inexpensive.
Google has gone into a much criticized partnership with Amazon were they agreed upon sharing technology and content to able to provide E-Books for a considerably lower price than their competitors.
In 2012, one standardized DRM system has been developed by publishers and leading IT companies. They have agreed to make their system available at low cost and let many manage the DRM. More and more publishers begin to use this low cost DRM system. This standard soon becomes the industry standard. This results in the price decrease of e-books.
People have become more concerned about their privacy, and e-book stores have to focus on improving the privacy issues in next years.
Due to the e-book boom, the general interest in literature has increased, and active readers have started to create own communities for book reviews, ratings etc. Readers are now fully able to customize their own e-books, add own pictures, videos and sound to make an individual story out of every book.
The number of traditional book stores has decreased by 40% in the last few years. Some of them have started “Starbooks” e-book cafes, offering a meeting point for literature fans, for example to collaborate writing in their e-book community or create books online in the cafe..
In 2014, yellow pages decide to abandon paper publishinging, and they go completely to electronic.
The business model and value-chain of traditional publishers has changed. Publishing only ebooks decrease operational costs because paper, ink or energy is not needed, distribution is easier and there is no need for big storages (physical buildings).
In 2017, 60% of the books are available in electronical format.
Cheap e-book readers, designed especially for developing world have become popular in Asia, together with increased literacy rate. The next generation of e-book readers is coming, especially in Japan people have started to download and read their e-books on their smart mobile phones.
By now people are able to read their ebooks online but also have the ability to download and read their books when there is no internet access available.
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