Over the past decade or so, dramatic developments in our ability to experimentally determine the content and function of genomes have taken place. In particular, next-generation sequencing technologies are now inspiring a new understanding of bacterial transcriptomes on a global scale. In bacterial cells, whole-transcriptome studies have not received attention, owing to the general view that bacterial genomes are simple. However, several recent RNA sequencing results are revealing unexpected levels of complexity in bacterial transcriptomes, indicating that the transcribed regions of genomes are much larger and complex than previously anticipated. In particular, these data show a wide array of small RNAs, antisense RNAs, and alternative transcripts. Here, we review how current transcriptomics are now revolutionizing our understanding of the complexity and regulation of bacterial transcriptomes.