How does traditional book reading differ from digital reading?

Books play a significant role in the life of a human being by laying down the foundation of learning at a young age. They aim to deliver authentic information to the readers.

In the last few decades, not just the appearance of books have been changed, but the mode of reading books has also taken a turn, which is mainly due to the digitization process. eBooks and audiobooks have come into vogue in recent years.

Printed books are the physical form of books, consisting of pages or sheets of paper fastened together inside the cover (often cardboard). It is a literary work of fiction and non-fiction, which contains information, stories, poetry, or similar stuff. In other words, a printed book is an extended published literary composition.

When a book is available in a digital format, it is termed as an eBook. It comprises text, graphics, tables, etc. which can be readable in a flat-panel or touch screen devices, such as a desktop computer, laptop, tablet, mobile or eBook reader.

In this article, we will discuss how traditional books differ from digital reading. 

Reasons of printed books are better than ebooks

  1. The feel of paper 

For some people, this is a very important factor. For wholehearted readers, holding a book in hand, the smell of the paper, nice binding and flipping through pages is a beautiful feeling which lacks in a digital device. Also, it feels great to always have a book nearby, no matter if you read it or not.

  1. Sharing the books 

You can share a printed book with any friend or colleague whereas paid ebooks  can be used with one account only. That means you cannot share purchased ebooks with a friend without sharing your account details. This is one very important factor in the debate of ebooks vs printed books.

  1. Illustrations and images 

Printed books are great when it comes to displaying images and illustrations. However, ebook readers are not so good at this. Along with this, ebook readers support the black and white display, not colored.  So the genres of photography, cooking etc are more successful as print books.

  1. Flexibility in Annotating 

Annotating a printed book is very limited in an ebook. In a printed book you can use pencils and pens of different colors to highlight, use symbols, drawings etc. But this feature is very limited in an ebook where you can only highlight lines, bookmark pages and add some notes.

  1. Ability to skim quickly 

It is easier to skim a real book than an ebook. a printed book is much faster as compared to that of an ebook reader.

  1. No need for electric power 

You don’t need to charge printed books. Since it needs no electric power. You can carry them anywhere without the worry of charging.

  1. Cheaper than ebook

A printed book is much cheaper than the ebook reader.  If you don’t read much, a print book will be more economical. But if you read a lot of books, the overall cost is reduced with an ebook reader.

     Reason of ebooks are better than printed books

  1. Ease of reading 

Reading on an ebook reader is great. Most of them provide one-hand experience. Most of the time, you won’t need to use two hands. You can read at any angle and posture. The ebook readers with inbuilt light allow you to read in dark without any eye strain.

  1. Access to thousands of books

An Ebook reader is very lightweight. You can carry thousands of books anywhere since ebook carries just a digital copy of the book. Imagine you are going for a long tour and you don’t want to carry a lot of books in your luggage. It is even lighter than a medium sized book. Printed books can be heavy, especially the one with thousands of pages and hardcover ones.

  1. Cost effective 

The ebook reader might look costly. But that is a one-time investment. When it comes to purchasing the books for the ebook reader. The price of ebooks is pretty less than the printed ones. Along with that, there are thousands of free ebooks available on the internet for download. This is considered a very important factor while talking about ebooks vs printed books.

  1. Highlighting & bookmarking 

Highlighting and bookmarking is really simple in an ebook vs printed book. Just one finger is enough for all this, no pencil/pen needed. You can quickly review the note. All the notes are accessible online in one place where you can view, share, download or print. No need to go through the entire book again.

  1. Inbuilt dictionaries, Wikipedia 

eBook has inbuilt dictionaries, Wikipedia features, this will help to explore the characters and summary of the book. You don’t need to carry a dictionary or phone while reading. When you don’t understand the meaning of any word, just tap on it and the definition will be displayed instantly.

  1. Instant availability of books

Ebooks never go out of stock. After all, they are digital copies. Once you purchase an ebook, you can download them instantly and start reading it. You don’t need to wait for the delivery of the book.

  1. Free samples

When you are looking for an ebook, generally the seller provides a sample which contains some parts of initial chapters, the table of contents etc. This helps you to start reading without actually purchasing the book. If you like it and want to continue, then you can purchase it.

Even though book reading always helps in gaining or learning something new, irrespective of the purpose, i.e. personal, professional or educational. There is a fine line of difference between printed book and eBook, with respect to cost, availability and features. A consumer has to weigh the options so as to arrive at a decision, concerning the kind of format they like to prefer.

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