“For consumers travelling or on holiday having an additional ereader device to look after is awkward...”https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/apr/27/screen-fatigue-sees-uk-ebook-sales-plunge-17-as-readers-return-to-print
Have we reached a point of device fatigue? I have seen a lot of reviews of the following device saying people are using it to replace their laptops, tablets, and e-readers with an all-in-one, like the Samsung Chromebook Plus:
And they says 99-cent paperbacks are making a comeback, and I don't blame them. I still reach for physical books on a regular basis. I can take them anywhere and I don't have to worry about power, and they aren't really painful if they are lost or stolen. I can lend them to others. There is that tactful turning the page feeling that I grew up with, and I love the sensations - the smell of the ink, the feel of the paper, the sensation of weight, the bend of the spine, and the sound of turning a page.
I like e-readers and I like e-books. I like tablets. There is a huge convenience factor with e-books. A world of reading opens up to me, and I can sample so many new and varied writers it blows my mind. I can keep a library on my phone and I always have a library in my pocket.
But, I have device fatigue. My phone chirps at me for attention. My e-reader and tablet need charging and they are dependent on wall sockets like a junkie to a fix. Windows is a constant attention hog and I have to pretend I am a network security engineer to keep the thing safe while I am online, and stay abreast of security updates, hacks, and all sorts of intrusion news. My Mac is a little better, but it is an expensive beast that I worry about whenever it goes on the road with me.
And then I found this device a while back, a Samsung Chromebook 2:
Yes, there is that whole "Google sees what you do thing" and that bothers me a little. But what I do on this I do not worry, so I don't have an issue with that fact.
This goes everywhere I do. I did 20,000 words of Bolwarama out of 50K total on this while on vacation. No qualms about hotel WiFi, given my standard security practices with that type of access, and it does what I need it to do.
Browse the web and write books.
I still love this little laptop. There are some devices that when the discussion of "device fatigue" comes up I can put them in that category. I still love them and appreciate having them around, but, you know? You know that feeling that it is like "love but if...?" And then there are some devices when the subject of "device fatigue" comes up I will defend to the death. No freaking way I could live without that device. I would rather go without my iPhone than this laptop. Even though the screen sucks. Even though I need to lug around an extra charger. Even though it does not play Windows games. Even though it is an extra laptop, needs to be looked after, and secured when I leave the hotel room.
By all means I shouldn't be this much of a zealot, but I am just because the machine has never failed me or caused me heartache. It performs. I have less expectations for this than I do Windows or Mac, but what it does it does incredibly well. It is low distraction by design.
But my other devices? I could live without them if all I had was this. In fact, if I didn't have all these devices lying around I think I would get more out of one of them than I would a little out of five of them, each one begging for attention, each one requiring a slightly different skill set to use. I can see the point of the article above, people are tired of loading up on devices and switching between them. E-book sales are down because there is nothing really new in the world of e-readers, and like they suspect, that old-fashioned books have an inherent convenience factor and appeal to them.
And I feel that device fatigue. Most of my devices have not improved my life or made it any easier.
But one has.
In this world of insecure computing and constant worry, one device has won my loyalty and respect.
And now a new device, similar to the current champion, calls with its siren's song to me.
I can replace the rest of them.
This and a couple paperback books shoved in a travel bag? My phone in my purse?
I think I could live that life rather well.