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E-readers: the compatibility conundrum

With the Kindle, Nook, a raft of new e-readers comes an issue well known to early adopters: what’s next?

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Just as iPods replaced your record collection with a click wheel and a pair of white headphones, e-readers now want to digitize your bookcase. The problem is: they all want to do it in different ways.

Rich Clabaugh/Staff

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At this month’s International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the biggest tech convention of the year, attendants found a trove of e-reader devices.

Just as iPods replaced your record collection with a click wheel and a pair of white headphones, the Amazon Kindle, Sony Reader, Barnes & Noble Nook, and untold others now want to digitize your bookcase.

However, they all want to do it in different ways.

If you bought a Kindle a year ago, loaded it up with e-books but then became smitten with the Nook, your purchased books cannot follow you over to the new device – the Kindle files will be inscrutable to a Nook.

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