Reading on the iPod Touch

I recently bought myself an iPod Touch. First, I wanted an iPod with a more storage. Second, I wanted a smaller wifi device (smaller than my laptop) for web connection and email while I’m on the move. Third, I want a better phone, and would like an iPhone, but stumping up the cash for both the phone and the contract seems a bit steep. I got the touch to test out the idea of the iPhone, and if I like it I’ll maybe get an iPhone later in the year.

The Touch, by the way, is pretty cool. I keep finding new things on it that are really useful. A main thing is the seamless integration with iCal, which I use for calendar stuff. And lots more I won’t go into now.

I thought I’d use it as a book reader too. If I can get new releases cheaper, and I don’t have to carry the damn things around with me on multiple airline journeys, I’d be a lot happier. Also, I’d like to read through my own fiction writing on the go, rather than having to print it or scroll through it on my laptop.

My first plan was just to read html or text formats with the Safari browser. I knew I could get public domain books from Project Gutenberg so surfed on over. I wanted science fiction, so picked a The Time Machine by H. G. Wells.

After four chapters I found that scrolling down a huge page on a browser wasn’t the way to go. I needed to be able to flip pages.

So I went to the App Store and downloaded two free ebook readers. One was eReader, but that seemed strongly tied to an ebook store, and transferring files looked tricky.

The second was Stanza. I opened it for the first time on the Touch and it said “The Time Machine. Wells, Herbert George.” I was confused for a split second, thinking “Wait, I’ve not even tried to transfer the file across yet! The iPod Touch is just the best device EVER!”

Then my brain caught up and I realised the novel I wanted to read as a test of the Touch as a book reader was the exact same novel that Stanza provides to let people use the Touch as a book reader. The reasoning is the same, of course; a classic short novel in the public domain. It’s just one of those small coincidences that make life so interesting.

Stanza seems to have all the features I want, with direct access between the Touch and my Macbook via wifi for transferring text files. Maybe I won’t need a kindle afterall.

EDIT: Four hours before I began looking for ebook readers for the iPod Touch, Amazon released an app that lets you view kindle content. Another coincidence, and a product I’ll look at later.