Is it time the print media stopped printing?

newspapersAn article on the Business Week website suggests that some of the bigger American newspapers should stop printing physical copies and withdraw to publishing solely on the web – maybe not right away, but within the next year or two. It’s hardly a new suggestion, but it’s gaining more weight as time goes by – the logistics and overheads of print media are making it a tricky business in which to make a profit, and we’re consuming more media online all the time. The UK’s Guardian already lets you download the latest editions in PDF form, to print or not as you choose. How long will it be before all periodical publications are electronic? [Print Is Dead]

2 thoughts on “Is it time the print media stopped printing?”

  1. Great, no more newspapers. I have been muttering that since the early 1990s. I can’t stand the old fossil media. So now we need cheap, sturdy readables, something like 2XA4 in size, something you can roll up and put in your jacket, something that can handle coffee, icecold sleet, getting stepped on, is cheap as a pocket calculator and will still have a functional touch screen after all that. How about 2012?

    However if I can order my toys, I’d rather have all that in a functional, ergonomic, good looking *cheap* wearable – that also offers vid, surround sound, phone, GPS, interactive gesture-driven VR, wearable computing and high-resolution augmented reality. How about 2016? Contact lense driven AR with dispersed computing by 2025?

    These hardware/media/software people need a clue. Maybe I’ll get one somewhere and hit them with it real hard.

    Imagine the games ! Imagine the porn !

  2. There are a few technological sticking points that are working to keep print alive for the moment:

    -The battery life of portable devices is still not acceptable.

    -The screen real estate and image quality of portable devices is still not equal to magazine quality

    -Readability of text in the widest possible range of lighting conditions needs to improve drastically

    -The ergonomics of handheld devices needs to improve (too heavy, bulky, can’t be rolled up and stuffed in a handbag or back pocket, etc. )

    The reason I focus on portable reading and computing devices is that we’re at pretty much a cultural apex in terms of how much time people are willing to spend sitting at an actual desktop computer, looking at a monitor. The vast majority of people do not find this to be an engaging experience, and even hardended geeks don’t like reading PDF’s on a desktop.

    I’d say at a guess that all the current limitations with handheld devices should be resolved within 5 -10 years at the outside. That’s when we’ll see newspapers, magazines and books start to disappear as quickly as Vinyl did when CD’s first came out (The vinyl was mostly off the shelves in about 18 months)

Comments are closed.