TLDR: The next thing I want in an e-Reader is a rear display
I was given this assignment at the beginning of the week by my colleague Michael Fisher. And I was excited about it. I totally get it. That would be awesome! My mind instantly started thinking of the possibilities. I thought of the YotaPhone. I thought of low power consumption. I thought of Netflix. All in one device!
This is a killer idea.
One device to rule them all
Imagine hefting your Kindle Fire and firing up Netflix. You watch another episode of House of Cards. Kevin Spacey is killing it. Suddenly you get a notification that you’re down to 20% battery life – you forgot to charge! And it’s time to go to the DMV and renew your license. Your wife went three weeks ago and still hasn’t come back yet. You’re in for a long wait. What to do?
Simply flip that bad boy over to the e-ink display and crack open the Lee Child novel you’ve been working on. 20% battery on an e-ink display will last hours, even days! It’s genius!
So I quickly fired off an email to our esteemed idea-maker. As it turned out, he bought tickets for an entirely different train of thought.
One of the uses Mr. Fisher sees for that rear screen (be it e-ink or full color) is to display the cover of the book that is currently being read. This way, just like a normal book, people can look at the cover and say “Hey! I’ve read that. Mind if I sit?” You can then discuss your mutual affection for Jack Reacher and your philosophical views on whether Tom Cruise was a poor casting choice (spoiler alert: he wasn’t). This leads to a human connection that is absent from so much of our technology these days. In a world of privacy, and separatism, a rear display would be just one touch that could bring us all closer together.
And then he went on…
The kind of “oh, you’re reading Shades of Gray too? How do you like it?” conversations the girl at the coffee shop starts when she sees you’re reading total trash. Conversations that lead to sex… Kindle is killing those.
Kindle is killing sex. Run with that.