Amazon KindleThe netbook revolution never came – as Apple’s iPad (and subsequently, all the other notable Android-powered tablets) came into the scene, cannibalizing into the netbook’s already niche market. I guess the netbook was a good idea, but that was because the tablet segment had yet to be perfected. Well, there is another segment of hardware that crosses path with the tablet, and those would be dedicated e-readers, such as the black-and-white Kindles from Amazon. The thing is, research firm IHS iSuppli claims that e-readers are in an “alarmingly precipitous decline” this year after experiencing five years of rapid growth, and this is due to the fact that tablets have gotten far more useful and powerful.

In fact, the e-reader landscape has changed so much that Amazon now has tablets parked under the Kindle brand, with Barnes & Noble Inc. getting into the game with its Nook e-reader line. IHS predicts that shipments of e-readers will drop to just 14.1 million this year, compared to 23.2 million in 2011. I guess convergence devices are always the way to go in this modern age, otherwise, how else do you explain the rise of the smartphone?

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