They also makes self-publishing a lot easier. This opens up avenues of opportunity for new writers, and there are a great many well-received books available for a pound or less.
It’ll be interesting to see whether the e-Reader substantially alters reading, and perhaps writing, habits beyond this.
Personally, I think I buy more books now than I did before. The speed of delivery and the ability to read a sample are real bonuses (although I hope authors start including approximate word counts so the size of a book can be roughly gauged).
I read somewhere or other that there’s a slight fashion towards slightly shorter books now. The smaller amount of text available on each page (as default, it can be varied somewhat) probably leads to books seeming a bit longer than they would if they were in physical format.
I wonder if interactive serials could ever take off. Books used to be released one chapter at a time, I think, and whilst I can’t see that as such working, it might, if, after each chapter, the audience got to make a critical plot decision. The author could then write the next chapter up, and the process occur again. Hmm.
E-books won’t ever fully replace proper physical books, though. For a start, a file is a rubbish present compared to a physical book. It’s also useful for certain types (cookery, art) to have a physical book.