Ebooks On Airplane Screens?

Will airlines begin to offer eBooks on flights the way they offer movies?

Last night I was flying on Virgin America and I was playing around on “Red,” the airline’s interactive entertainment system on the back on the seat and came across a “Read” button. When you push the button is says, “Coming soon,” which it has said since the airline launched back in 2007.

It made me wonder if they had plans to start featuring eBooks or short stories for free or for purchase. There are a number of ways that it could work. Perhaps you could sign in to an existing Amazon or Barnes & Noble account and access your digital bookshelf directly. Or perhaps the airline could sell bestsellers or short stories directly. Think Atlantic Fiction’s monthly short stories in the Kindle store.

It could also be a great place for publishers to market their books and give away sample chapters. I like to catch up on new music videos on Virgin’s entertainment system, so why not read a couple of chapters from a few new bestsellers to decide which ones I might actually like to buy and read.

It is also a good place to read newspapers, magazines or headlines. But there is something about reading books on airplanes that goes hand in hand.

What do you think?