A famous movie character may have said "print is dead" back in the 1980s, but it is even more true today with the growth of online media. It's taken time for people to slowly let go of traditional media to embrace digital. Certain features have finally made online media truly more appealing than print:
It's More Engaging
Print is static and even with stunning color photos, it can be quite flat. When you can start to produce content that has active video and sound, then you really start to grab your reader's attention.
New formats have even led to animated "flipping" action, so you feel like you're turning pages, just as you would with a paper document. Jake Savin (jakesavin.com) offers a little more detail on this new content format.
It's More Convenient
Delivery or purchase of old-fashioned print media is a thing of the past. Now you can access magazines, books or news content with just a few clicks on a device you're probably carrying around anyway.
Buying media is practically instantaneous, and you can find a larger selection than you ever would in any brick and mortar book or magazine store. And all of these content is available in the palm of your hand, saving you the time and energy of going shopping.
Digital is also more convenient for reading once you've got your material. Your phone or tablet can carry dozens if not hundreds of magazines, books and articles for you, allowing you to read what you want whenever you please without actually having to carry anything around. The specific number you can have will depend on your file storage capabilities of course.
It's More Up-to-Date
Another key factor that makes online media better than traditional print is that you can update your documents in the blink of an eye. Once a print magazine is completed and printed, there is nothing you can do to update any content or change any possible errors.
Now, this doesn't technically apply to any documents or files that have already been downloaded and now reside on a reader's device. The point still holds for any online content that is read or accessed directly from the publisher's servers. Any changes you make are reflected in real time, making it an excellent medium for any content that may require updates or added information as time passes. Print publications can't accommodate this at all.
It's More Cost Effective
This is more of a benefit for the publisher than the reader, but still one important feature about online media that can't be ignored. Though there are costs associated with the production and distribution of digital documents, it can be much less than the costs associated with paper printing and shipping.
The cost factor is particularly true for small publishers who don't get the price breaks on printing or shipping that the larger houses do. Overall, it's not a guaranteed cost savings between digital and print but it can be a factor.