Saturday, October 24, 2009

Flight stories

The following were seen on a flight going between the U.K. and the U.S.:
  • Two people (a man and a woman) in the same row (on opposite sides of the plane) were spotted reading "The Lost Symbol" by Dan Brown. The woman read through it most of the flight and made significant headway; the man read a few chapters and then set aside the book in favor of his newspaper and a good nap.
  • A different man in the same row showed off his Kindle 2 to his travel companions seated on either side of him as the plane boarded. He displayed the way the Kindle flips pages, the weight, and presumably some of the higher brow books he had on it. He then put the Kindle away for the entire flight and read from a print newspaper. Go figure.
  • Near the end of the flight, a woman one row ahead pulled out her iPhone and began to read from it. After a few moments, it became obvious (via her method of flipping pages and her level of concentration) that she was reading an eBook. Amazon wins again?
  • And meanwhile, this correspondent was reading from a silver Sony Reader.
Once I may have been surprised to see two people reading the same book. Or a strangely titled book (also spotted a few of those). Instead, now I was surprised by the prevalence of eReaders in these three back rows: one Kindle, one Reader, and one iPhone. Apparently, eReaders are becoming more and more common by the day... well then.


  1. Possibly the passengers on a transatlantic flight are not completely typical - on a bus to Eastbourne the other day I saw no e-readers. No doubt this topic will be thrashed over frequently in the future. I am a bit of a tekkie, but find the allure of the printed page too much to abandon at the moment.

  2. Or perhaps they are becoming really common on airplanes? It seems that airplanes are one of the few places where it makes a lot of sense to have an e-reader, since it's a pain to travel with a stack of books. Well, perhaps there are a number of places e-readers make sense (I don't want to sound biased against them), but airplanes must be high on the list.

  3. Very interesting. I have yet to fly with my Kindle but I frequently take it with me on my public transit commute. I have never seen anyone else on the train with one, though a woman did ask me what I thought of mine. I did see a guy on the bus once with a Kindle, but only once.


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