Ten years ago, consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers and Director Nicholas Negroponte of MIT Media Institute predicted the end of paper books.
However, paper books are still actively selling today, and with the e-book market growing as well. E-books need to leverage their strengths by providing new experiences that can only be found in e-books.
We conducted a simple experiment to analyze the user’s eye pattern while reading an mobile e-book to see what ‘eye tracking’ could bring to the e-book experience, and we found there are two possibilities.
Turn the page with your eyes.
One of e-books strengths is the ability to read on the go, even in environments like noisy subways crowded with people. In such an environment, both touch and voice recognition can be difficult or uncomfortable to use. However, if you could simply turn pages with your eyes, you can ensure an uninterrupted and comfortable reading experience.
Recommend which book is good for you.
E-book platforms have the ability to recommend books when traditionally you would need to manually browse or hear word of mouth. With a recommendation algorithm based on vast amounts of gaze data of various books, finding the next suitable book becomes a smoother transition.
This means you could read some sample books while a recommendation algorithm analyzes your eye pattern. Without being based on yours or others’ ratings, you get recommended the book suited for you.
This is a totally new experience that only e-books can offer, and it is also an opportunity to help casual readers become more active readers.