Writing in The Australian Financial Review, Rachael Bolton reports on the challenges facing traditional book publishing as e-book readers grow in popularity. She says 2009 was the watershed year for e-book readers and also for e-book sales.

Bolton said e-books have yet to take off in Australia (story behind pay wall) because of the poor range of available titles. This is also true in New Zealand.

She says experts expect sales to take off when e-books arrive, possibly early next year.

So, e-books are coming to Australia and New Zealand in volume. The AFR suggests their arrival will change the economics of publishing.

If anything e-books will see margins drop, at least for traditional publishers. They will trim their lists to compensate. Hopefully the disruption and lower cost of entry will see hungry newcomers emerge to replace them.

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