Augmenting physical objects like books has been the subject of science fiction for years. Science fiction moved to experimentation about 20 years ago, but experiments have mostly relied on cumbersome hardware additions and software that is far from adequate keeping most of this in the research stage. Google has recently been filing patents and appears to be much closer to something realistic. An early market may be augmented children's books.
Publishing Perspectives, a trade journal for the book publishing industry, reported that consultant Bruce Harris voiced enthusiasm for the role of augmented reality (AR) in publishing, saying there was potential in "a true amalgamation of digital and print."
Not just physical print forms but even digital forms could benefit from AR. Harris said, "In some ways, digital has been "a frozen print experience," in that the reader is often looking at the same thing in both print and digital versions."
Once you add AR, you are experiencing movement, extra sound, "a lot of extra qualities" with the content.
Reading behavior in the AR vein might involve people using their phones or tablet apps to scan their physical page and see extra elements pop up. You are not throwing your printed book into the dustbin to read the same online. Instead, "You use your device to discover more content. The content is digitally appealing and has stuff you can manipulate, but you need the actual book in order to do it."